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I usually stay away from considering myself to belong to groups1 because I don't have control over them and their reputation derived either from actions committed in the past, present or future by those who were, are or will consider themselves or be considered by others as members of such aforementioned groups, or from different definitions of what the groups are about, causing as a result different interpretations and assumptions with prejudice.

That way, from my view, most stereotypes and presumptions can be avoided even if I do have some similarities that would make someone associate me with a particular group.

Is there a term that resembles that of what I just explained?


1 Examples of what I mean by groups from the top of my head (list not exhaustive and possibly slightly incorrect):

  • Religion: buddhism, christianism, including (non-religions terms/philosofies) atheism, theism, nihilism, and so on.
  • Political parties/systems like anarchy, democracy, dictatorship, monarchy, those kinds of views and whatnot.
  • Particular subjects / others: gamer, virgin, weeaboo, introvert, extrovert.
  • Gender (online).
  • Etc...
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    So you would like a name that describes a categorization that you can belong to that says you don’t want to associate yourself with any categorization?? – Jim Jan 22 '20 at 17:16
  • @Jim Sort of a non-correlation to groups in general. In a way apathetic/non-participative/detached/disassociated from norms, I guess. It's not that I have something against everything, it's that I want to make clear that I'm me and not what any associations say I am. – user7393973 Jan 22 '20 at 18:22
  • Right, but whatever we come up with it will be you and all the others like you that will fit that group. – Jim Jan 22 '20 at 18:23
  • @Jim It does contradict itself to be "part of a group that isn't part of groups". What I'm looking for is not a group but a neutral term/word free from the usual prejudices that simply means kind of what I explained. – user7393973 Jan 22 '20 at 18:25
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    "Apathetic" is rather different. It means you can't be bothered to participate in a group, but I take the question to mean actively avoiding established groups. For example you play golf, but deliberately avoid the clubhouse and hole 19, and any invitations. Perhaps you are a loner or a nonconformist. – Weather Vane Jan 22 '20 at 18:56
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The most generic term available for this is undefined or not defined, depending on which flows better in speech.

Because a definition for undefined gives you something along the lines of not defined, here is the definition for define. I'll be going with the sense in #3 on Merriam-Webster:

define
verb

  1. Characterize; Distinguish
    you define yourself by the choices you make

This tells us that someone who is undefined is not characterized or distinguished. Forms of distinguishing someone by association are, then, caught by this phrase.

Are you a Christian?
No, I am not. As a matter of fact, I don't belong to any group, religious or social. I am undefined by those things.

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  • That's an interesting choice. I like it. – user7393973 Jan 24 '20 at 8:18
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A word which perhaps fits is unclubbable - but unfortunately it does carry a negative sense.

Its OED entry reads as follows:

Not clubbable; (of a person) not suitable for membership of a club owing to lack of sociability or desire to conform; (of a characteristic) that does not inspire friendly relations; unsociable.

?1764 F. Burney Early Jrnls. & Lett. (1994) III. 76 Sir John was a most unclubable man!

1859 G. A. Sala Twice round Clock (1861) 215 Moreover, they are a people who drink standing,..a most unclubable characteristic.

1867 E. Yates Forlorn Hope I. x. 222 Kilsyth is not popular at Barnes's, being decidedly an unclubbable man.

1960 Proc. Royal Music Assoc. 86th Sess. 11 As a musician he was certainly outstanding but he seems to have been a rather undisciplined and unclubbable character.

2016 Daily Mail (Nexis) 7 July She is stubborn, unclubbable, unimpeachable, not frightened by the will of others, quietly determined.

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  • Thanks for the suggestion. Though I think most people including me would have to search the meaning of it and still not get it too well or would have to ask which in that case I would have just explained in the first place. ^^' – user7393973 Jan 22 '20 at 20:52
  • @user7393973 Are you saying you would not use it because no one would understand what it meant? – WS2 Jan 22 '20 at 21:49
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Perhaps, you are looking for unbelonging or unbelongingness.

It is the opposite of belongingness defined as:

The state or feeling of belonging to a particular group. - Lexico.

Here is a relevant excerpt from the book Interrogating Belonging for Young People in Schools (edited by Christine Halse - 2018):

Unbelonging can be imposed, for example when a government rejects a refugee's application for asylum, a religion ostracises a member of its flock, or a peer group shuns one of its members. Unbelonging can also be an act of individual or group agency, a conscious choice or deliberate resistance to the idea, position or experience of belonging. This would be the case, for example, when a young person deliberately rejects the beliefs and practices of racist, misogynist or homophobic group or consciously defies the rules and governmentality that are a condition for belonging in a school community (see Hayes and Skattebol 2015).

(emphasis mine)

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The concept of a general non-believing group had some light traction as atheism plus.

In August 2012, Jennifer McCreight founded a movement known as Atheism Plus that "applies skepticism to everything, including social issues like sexism, racism, politics, poverty, and crime."

(The internal quote above is referenced in the above link, but that reference is no longer accessible.)

However, the naming the absence of a belief has been criticized:

I think that “atheist” is a term that we do not need, in the same way that we don’t need a word for someone who rejects astrology.

Atheism plus appears to have been a brief effort that is now largely defunct.

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