- [C-] the philosophy of the Cynics
- the attitudes or beliefs of a cynical person
- a cynical remark, idea, or action
The definition of cynicism is an attitude of suspicion where you believe the future is bleak and that people are acting only out of self interest.
An example of cynicism is when you always think the worst and have a hard time seeing the good in anyone.
- An attitude of scornful or jaded negativity, especially a general distrust of the integrity or professed motives of others: the public cynicism aroused by governmental scandals.
- A scornfully or jadedly negative comment or act: “She arrived at a philosophy of her own, all made up of her private notations and cynicisms” ( Henry James )
- Cynicism The beliefs of the ancient Cynics.
(countable and uncountable, plural cynicisms)
- (uncountable) a distrustful attitude
- David T Wolf: "Idealism is what precedes experience; cynicism is what follows."
- (uncountable) an emotion of jaded negativity, or a general distrust of the integrity or professed motives of other people. Cynicism can manifest itself by frustration, disillusionment and distrust in regard to organizations, authorities and other aspects of society, often due to previous bad experience. Cynics often view others as motivated solely by disguised self-interest.
- (countable) a skeptical, scornful or pessimistic comment or act
- His influence was weakened, however, by his cynicism and by his ultra-aristocratic views.
- Disregarding all the accidental excrescences of the doctrine, Cynicism must be regarded as a most valuable development and as a real asset in the sum of ethical speculation.
- The cold cynicism with which he acted towards de Witt is only matched by the heroic obstinacy with which he confronted Louis.
- Cynicism, often followed by religion in a poet's later life, is common.
- Her cynicism has influenced me more than I thought; I am now skeptical of almost everything.