Pariahs are outcasts: people who have been cast out of society or totally rejected. It's a harsh word that expresses one of humanity's ugliest tendencies toward exclusion and intolerance.
So let's lighten things up and recall a funny word that also relates to casting things out-- out a window! When you d___________ something, you chuck it right out an open window.
make your point with...
A pariah is someone who is hated and rejected by society.
puh RYE uh
Part of speech:
(Countable nouns, like "bottle," "piece," and "decision," are words for things that can be broken into exact units. You talk about "a bottle," "three pieces," and "many decisions."
Likewise, talk about one pariah or multiple pariahs.)
"Pariahdom" and "pariahhood" are both nouns for the idea or condition of people being pariahs.
You can also use "pariah" as an adjective.
How to use it:
When it seems too informal to refer to someone as "an outcast" or "a reject," use "pariah," which carries an ugly history of describing an entire class of people who were considered unclean and therefore untouchable.
Talk about someone who's treated like a pariah, someone who becomes a pariah to a certain community or group, someone who is turned into a pariah among some group, someone who avoids some behavior because it'd make them a pariah at school or work, and so on.
To use "pariah" like an adjective, talk about pariah status, a pariah class, a pariah regime, etc.
To be figurative, you might describe a place, a behavior, or even an abstract concept like "truth" as a pariah. Tread carefully, though; this kind of usage is rare.
Middle school is rough. Something as insignificant as carrying the wrong kind of backpack can turn you in a seventh grade pariah.
The whistle blower was labeled a pariah and quite literally cast out.
study it now:
Look away from the screen to explain the definition in your own words. You’ll know you understand what "pariah" means when you can explain it without saying "social reject" or "untouchable."
try it out:
Think of something that would be totally unacceptable to your whole family, either seriously or jokingly, and fill in the blank: "_____ would make you a pariah in this family."
Example: "Bringing a low-calorie diet dish to Thanksgiving dinner would make you a pariah in this family. Start every recipe with a whole stick of butter, or else."
before you review:
Spend at least 20 seconds occupying your mind with the game below. Then try the review questions. Don’t go straight to the review now—let your working memory empty out first.
When it comes to word roots, everybody knows what some of them mean, like “ambi/amphi” (“both”) and “circum” (“around”) and “hetero” (“different”). This knowledge helps you explain why words like “automobile” and “autobiography” look similar—in this case, it’s because they both involve the concept of “self.” But what about some of the less obvious roots? Could you explain, for example, why “contain” looks so much like “sustain” by defining “tain”? This month, we're exploring the meanings underlying common words you know. You can usually figure these out by looking for an extremely basic concept common to all the words in each group. We’ll start with easier, more obvious roots and move on to trickier ones as the month goes on!
Yesterday's question: In abject, adjective, conjecture, dejected, eject, injection, interject, object, project, reject, subject, and trajectory, what does “ject” mean?
Answer: To throw.
Try this one today: In aspect, circumspect, expect, inspect, introspection, specimen, spectrum, suspect, spectacle, spectator, and speculate, what does “spec” mean?
review today's word:
1. One opposite of PARIAH is
2. Can you believe that he once was _____ as a pariah?
A. accepted B. initiated
Answers are below.
a final word:
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Disclaimer: Word meanings presented here are expressed in plain language and are limited to common, useful applications only. Readers interested in authoritative and multiple definitions of words are encouraged to check a dictionary. Likewise, word meanings, usage, and pronunciations are limited to American English; these elements may vary across world Englishes.
Answers to review questions:
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