View synonyms for callousness


[ kal-uhs-nis ]


  1. the quality of being insensitive, indifferent, or unsympathetic; hardness of heart:

    Cutting off the unemployed from their benefits is a sad blend of callousness—a complete lack of empathy for the unfortunate—and unsound economics.

  2. a hardened or thickened condition of the skin or other tissue:

    Razors and shaving cause a callousness of the skin, which will encourage heavier hair growth and irritation.

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Other Words From

  • un·cal·lous·ness noun

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Word History and Origins

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Example Sentences

I use “safer” because, while we might have been protected from the insurrectionists, we were not safe from the callousness of members of Congress who, having encouraged the sentiments that inspired the riot, now ignored requests to wear masks.

It can seem callous to think about policy in these terms, but it cannot be understated how much anti-smoking policies have improved health and general well-being.

From Vox

Nestlé and Cargill could risk sounding baldly callous in the Supreme Court next week.

From Fortune

When Congress finally did amend the immigration statute, Truman conceded that the measure “discriminates in callous fashion” against Jewish refugees — but he signed it anyway.

Those were the callous words printed on a sign below one family’s plea for help.

From Health

Medical authorities of the day often acted less out of an “abundance of caution” than with a general callousness to humanity.

A certain callousness toward everyone else seems to be part of the package.

Two basic characteristics not related to memory are apathy and indifference or callousness.

Too often this dynamic results in a toleration of demagogues who show callousness to communities of color in the USA.

But the woman who did handle it has been under a storm of Internet outrage over her seeming callousness and unprofessionalism.

The man who had asked the question climbed down and obeyed the order with the callousness of a dog nosing a dead rabbit.

And they almost regretted—though none of them would have owned to such callousness—that their father was soon coming back.

Would you say that in this class of rare exceptions the absence of tears was always due to callousness in the mourners?

It is quite possible to employ judgment so as to produce acts which will increase this organic callousness.

This callousness is almost beyond our comprehension, the tone of feeling is so different now.