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Definition societal disapproval or shaming associated with a behavior or a condition — (often used to describe unreasonable disapproval or shaming)

In botany, a stigma is part of a plant.

At one time, stigma referred to a brand made upon the skin of a criminal or slave. It can more broadly refer to any mark or symbol of societal disapproval. For example, in the novel, The Scarlet Letter, the scarlet "A" that Hester wore was called a stigma.
  • The stigma associated with sexually transmitted diseases makes diagnosis and treatment more difficult.
stigma = societal disapproval or shaming
  • We are working to further reduce the stigma of getting psychiatric counseling.
  • stigma = societal disapproval or shaming
  • Do not return to your families with the stigma of disgrace marked on your brows.
    Mary Shelley  --  Frankenstein
  • stigma = mark of societal disapproval
  • What imagination would have been irreverent enough to surmise that the same scorching stigma was on them both!
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The Scarlet Letter
  • stigma = mark of societal disapproval
  • They even all have the same last name, and she silently curses whoever it was who determined that they should all be named Ward—as if being one weren't enough of a stigma.
    Neal Shusterman  --  Unwind
  • stigma = something associated with societal disapproval
  • The stigma gone, Hester heaved a long, deep sigh, in which the burden of shame and anguish departed from her spirit.
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The Scarlet Letter
  • stigma = mark of societal disapproval
  • He tells you, that, with all its mysterious horror, it is but the shadow of what he bears on his own breast, and that even this, his own red stigma, is no more than the type of what has seared his inmost heart!
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The Scarlet Letter
  • stigma = mark of societal disapproval
  • Others contended that the stigma had not been produced until a long time subsequent, when old Roger Chillingworth, being a potent necromancer, had caused it to appear, through the agency of magic and poisonous drugs.
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The Scarlet Letter
  • stigma = mark of societal disapproval
  • But, in the lapse of the toilsome, thoughtful, and self-devoted years that made up Hester's life, the scarlet letter ceased to be a stigma which attracted the world's scorn and bitterness, and became a type of something to be sorrowed over, and looked upon with awe, yet with reverence too.
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The Scarlet Letter
  • stigma = mark of societal disapproval
  • There's got to be a way to get rid of the stigmas that come along with the numbers, but that's my goal."
    Kiera Cass  --  The One
  • Both problems created serious stigmas at the time.
    Ben Carson  --  Gifted Hands

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