Degradation is the act of lowering something or someone to a less respected state. A president resigning from office is a degradation. It’s also a downcast state. Once the president has resigned, he might feel degradation.

The noun degradation is related to the verb degrade, which comes from the Latin degradare. Degradare comes from de-, meaning “down,” and gradus, meaning "step." You can think of a degradation as a step down, or feeling as though you’re a step below.

Definitions of degradation
  1. noun
    changing to a lower state (a less respected state)
    synonyms: debasement
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    dehumanisation, dehumanization
    the act of degrading people with respect to their best qualities
    animalisation, animalization, brutalisation, brutalization
    an act that makes people cruel or lacking normal human qualities
    barbarisation, barbarization
    an act that makes people primitive and uncivilized
    bastardisation, bastardization
    an act that debases or corrupts
    corruption, subversion
    destroying someone's (or some group's) honesty or loyalty; undermining moral integrity
    demoralisation, demoralization
    destroying the moral basis for a doctrine or policy
    constipation, deadening, impairment, stultification
    the act of making something futile and useless (as by routine)
    popularisation, popularization, vulgarisation, vulgarization
    the act of making something attractive to the general public
    degradation of something worthy of respect; cheapening
    abasement, humiliation
    depriving one of self-esteem
    vulgarisation, vulgarization
    the act of rendering something coarse and unrefined
    decline to a lower status or level
    type of:
    change of state
    the act of changing something into something different in essential characteristics
  2. noun
    a low or downcast state
    synonyms: abasement, abjection
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    decadence, decadency, degeneracy, degeneration
    the state of being degenerate in mental or moral qualities
    (usually plural) a low moral state
    type of:
    state of disgrace or loss of self-respect
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