The Latin word humiliatus indicates that the person has lost self-respect and status.

Features of humiliation:

(1) The person is degraded, often through the intentional action of another to demonstrate dominance.

(2) The person is shown to be inferior, inadequate, of little value and not worthy of respect.

(3) This status is demonstrated in front of others.

(4) In response the person feels a range of negative emotions which may include anger, loss of self-esteem, embarrassment, and/or shame.

(5) The person is powerless to respond, at least initially.


The humiliation may occur once or as a recurring pattern of behavior.


Humiliation can serve as a form of psychological abuse.

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