Word for prejudiced person encompassing racist, sexist, homophobic, etc etc?

What’s a broad term for a person who is prejudiced and discriminates on the basis of demographic identity? This term would be more general than “racist” or “sexist” but would cover both of those terms and more.

I was thinking “bigot”, but when I look “bigot” up I see it’s actually about opinions – a bigot is somebody who is intolerant of different opinions.

I think in terms of modern usage, ‘bigot’ would do.

Don’t discount ‘asshole’ or ‘dickwad’, though. Those are always useful.

“bigot” doesn’t seem quite correct to me and I’m not sure what to replace it with.

“identity politics” as a concept seems to encapsulate a lot of that general sort of thinking, i.e. Someone who thinks in that way may make an assumption of a persons beliefs or attitudes or prejudge their actions based on one of their demographic categories because if someone is a man they *must *think or behave in *this *way, or a woman must obviously think or behave in a *different *way. The same lazy thinking applies to issues around ethnicity, sexuality, religion, political persuasion etc.


“Chauvinist” might work. The word “chauvinism” originally meant “extreme patriotism”, but it has expanded to mean something more like “excessive or prejudiced support for one’s own cause, group, or sex” (from the Google dictionary feature.)

I also do think that “bigot” has expanded in common usage to include all sorts of prejudice, not just prejudice against other religions & ideas.

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BeardOfBees, political jabs are against the rules in General Questions. Since you are new here, I’m making this a note instead of an official warning. But don’t do this again.

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Bigot is a fine word for the concept.
Dictionaries also define the word with: * especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (such as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance *.

I’ve always considered “asshole” and “jackass” two good all-purpose words.:smiley:


“Bigot” seems perfectly cromulent.

Or one could invent a word for the performative act that’s common to all such prejudices - how about “otherer”?

It isn’t always about hatred and intolerance though is it?

If you are a black person and you assume that another black person will hold the same beliefs and opinions and act the same way as you do, that is precisely the concept that the OP refers to but it isn’t anything to do with hatred.

Not necessarily, but very often the opinion that’s assumed to be shared isn’t along the lines of “this person will share my taste in music”; it’s along the lines of “this person will share my prejudices”. And when that person is discovered to not share those prejudices the reaction is first disbelief, then intolerance; often insults or even assault. Note that even when what’s expected to be shared is something one might considered neutral or positive, it’s based on prejudice: my people act/believe/opine this way, this person is of my people, therefore this person acts/believes/opines this way. The person is perceived, not as an individual with their own complex history, but merely as an element on the uniform set “my people”.

A bigot is someone who splits the world in two along the lines of “people who are like me” and “the others”; the others may have some subsets. The defining characteristic used for the split varies: skin tone, religion, apparent sex, nationality… but that characteristic is assumed to completely define the person. All women are high-maintenance, all men are sexual assaulters. All Spaniards are lazy, all Mexicans lazier still, and all Germans have an engineering degree.

I dunno about this. The word originally meant someone who frequently and loudly professed strong religious opinions - the origin is uncertain but it may be based on “By God!” or an equivalent expression in another Germanic language. The word was pejorative from the outset, and the implication was that the person was either a hypcrite or a superstitious, credulous or insecure believer.

It fairly quickly evolved a parallel sense of a person considered to adhere fanatically or obstinately to a particular belief or practice, especially one which is intolerant or strongly partisan. And that’s where we get the current sense; if my entrenched beliefs or systematic practices are intolerant of others, however those others are identified or defined, I’m a bigot.

“Chauvinism” seems to have been stuck to sexism (and male-against-female sexism specifically) through frequent use of the phrase “male chauvinist pig”. I think using it in some other context, while potentially technically correct, would be confusing to a general audience.


Ironically, true misanthropes are the **least **discriminating people in that they hate everybody.

‘Omnibigot’? Not in anything but urban dictionary, but kind of fits somebody that is generally bigoted about pretty much anything.

I’m not sure misanthrope really is the best fit, as you can be bigoted towards everybody, but not necessary hate and try to avoid everybody, which a misanthrope would do.

I’ll add another agreement on “bigot” as a good catch-all word for someone holding intolerant prejudices.

IMHO, misanthrope has too often a curmudgeonly sense of “bah, humbug” attached to properly capture assholeness.

Addendum to add that in looking up some words inspired by this thread, I learned a new word:

Misology: a hatred of argument, reasoning, or enlightenment. (And hence, misologist, one given to misology.)