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Dominatrix by root would fit but has become intrinsically related to S&M. I'm thinking of a former Human Resources director, who created a Vice Presidential role for herself - that mindset. She attempted to "take me down" and terminate me, only to be defeated in arbitration.

Our former HR Director was a ______, taking great pleasure in eliminating employees, as she felt was her right.

Thesaurus.com's #2 definition is correct, a woman who dominates, oppresses, or behaves in a dictatorial way. but I need a word that does NOT have sexual connotations.

I tried thesaurus.com, synonym.com, and apparently Roget's Thesaurus Online has "died", per a link to a 1999 web page.

I found, deep within answers to a similar (but NOT duplicate) question the answer of IMPERIOUS, which with the https://www.collinsdictionary.com/us/dictionary/english/imperiousf definition seems to fit the bill. She was hired by committee into the HR role, and against logic, into the VP role as well, so that part was justified. Just not all of the tyrannical behaviour that came with it all. ;)

SOLVED ENOUGH. Thanks to all.

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  • What about virago? merriam-webster.com/dictionary/virago
    – user 66974
    Oct 6, 2022 at 19:10
  • Your question is self-contradictory. You want a non-sexual term specific to a woman. Oct 7, 2022 at 5:07
  • Do you want a term specific to a woman, or a general term that can suit either gender? People seem confused about this.
    – Stuart F
    Oct 7, 2022 at 14:29
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    @StuartF - woman is clearly cited in the headline. Then “I'm thinking of a former Human Resources director, who created a Vice Presidential role for herself - that mindset. She attempted to "take me down" and terminate me, only to be defeated in arbitration.” what more do you need to understand the OP refers to a female human being?
    – user 66974
    Oct 7, 2022 at 16:33
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    No one has yet suggested bully which describes the misuse of power to gain pleasure or satisfaction. Bullying is often thought to involve physical harm, or the threat of it, but misusing the power of a superior position or stronger personality is bullying as well.
    – BoldBen
    Oct 10, 2022 at 6:29

1 Answer 1

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I would refer to such a person as a:

  • petty tyrant (or just "tyrant")
  • petty authoritarian
  • malicious control freak
  • power hungry bitch

I think all those fit nicely into your statement. And none have sexual connotations.

Our former HR Director was a ______, taking great pleasure in eliminating employees, as she felt was her right.


tyrant

2b: one resembling an oppressive ruler in the harsh use of authority or power

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tyrant

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  • 1
    "Bitch" is definitely sexist.
    – Greybeard
    Oct 6, 2022 at 22:29
  • @Greybeard, the requirement was "not sexual". This answer meets that requirement. "Sexist" is something else. Oct 7, 2022 at 0:13
  • There seems some confusion about whether the OP wants a female-specific term or not. The heading mentions a woman but it doesn't specify that the term must be female-specific, just that the OP wants to describe a person they know who is female. Regardless, I'm not sure that here (under this answer) is the place to discuss if the question should be closed/is a duplicate.
    – Stuart F
    Oct 7, 2022 at 14:31
  • It would be useful if this answer explained the different meaning and connotations of each suggestion, as the four phrases are not equivalent.
    – Stuart F
    Oct 7, 2022 at 14:32
  • She ("i") meant this person, who is female, but would likely have bad behaviour either way, seemed to take a particular sense of pride and self-satisfaction in her role in eliminating employees that got on her bad side somehow. Personally, I would judge a male or female or other all in the same way, if they were in a power position acting in a similar manner. I have no bias for nor against BECAUSE she is a woman, it is just happenstance.
    – Victorious
    Oct 9, 2022 at 22:46

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