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Definition unaffected by self-interest

Much more rarely, disinterested can literally mean "not interested in something."
  • "General Service Administration," intoned a disinterested switchboard operator.
    Robert Ludlum  --  The Bourne Identity
  • He stared as Jace reached out a hand and gently, almost disinterestedly, caressed the hilt of the sword that had been driven into the floor.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Bones
  • "Going far?" asked the smaller man in a pleasant disinterested way.
    F. Scott Fitzgerald  --  This Side of Paradise
  • He didn't know me, his help was disinterested ....
    Ralph Ellison  --  Invisible Man
  • Why keep this thing alive, this rumor of disinterestedness?
    Thornton Wilder  --  The Bridge of San Luis Rey
  • (Editor's note:  The suffix "-ness" converts an adjective to a noun that means the quality of. This is the same pattern you see in words like darkness, kindness, and coolness.)
  • Or at least, they pretend to," he adds with a disinterested shrug.
    Victoria Aveyard  --  Red Queen
  • Gritting her teeth, she glanced around, but the nearby guards and servants remained as disinterested as a concrete wall.
    Marissa Meyer  --  Cinder
  • There was a bare wooden stage with two hairy-stemmed palm trees on each end and four girls in the center, swaying gently, disinterestedly.
    Maureen Daly  --  Seventeenth Summer
  • Thanks to his scientific mind he understood—a proof of disinterested intelligence which had pleased her and comforted her enormously.
    Virginia Woolf  --  To the Lighthouse
  • He was either so crushed by his own words that he couldn't proceed with his charade, or he truly did not care for her and was now disinterested.
    Ted Dekker  --  White: The Great Pursuit
  • It is this: in what we have done, and whatever you may think of it, we have been perfectly disinterested.
    T.S. Eliot  --  Murder in the Cathedral
  • He nodded, disinterested.
    Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl  --  Beautiful Creatures
  • I, who have so disinterested an affection for you, may increase your miseries tenfold by being an obstacle to your wishes.
    Mary Shelley  --  Frankenstein
  • Did you ever in your novel reading come across the old situation of the disinterested wife falling in love with her own husband?
    Margaret Mitchell  --  Gone with the Wind
  • Disinter—disinterested—disjoin—dis(She backtracks, indignant.
    William Gibson  --  The Miracle Worker
  • DUDARD: It was obviously a disinterested gesture on his part.
    Eugene Ionesco  --  Rhinoceros
  • It's hard to tell how quickly they'll reach the police—the volunteers seem utterly disinterested.
    Gillian Flynn  --  Gone Girl
  • I was probing him for details, and he spoke for seven or eight disinterested minutes.
    James Bradley  --  Flags of Our Fathers
  • Would he only sit, disinterested, on the boy's arm, while Cort struck him brainless with the ironwood?
    Stephen King  --  The Gunslinger
  • I was simply developing her, entirely disinterestedly, trying to rouse her to protest....
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky  --  Crime and Punishment

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