What would you call a word created or coined to harm someone or some group of people or cause havoc. I think there is a need for such a word as a from someone's point of view there are always words of this kind, and someone needs to be able to point out the word as such, possibly by backing such designation with an argument.


2 Answers 2


I'm not quite sure what you mean by "created to cause havoc" but words that are intended to harm people or groups of people are often called slurs, particularly if they are based around race, religion, ethnicity, sex, etc.


There are several words that are close to this meaning. The first is "invective":

invective (n): criticism that is very forceful, unkind, and often rude. "A stream of invective from some sectors of the press continues to assail the government."

"Invective" is a general term for language intended to provoke a forceful, usually angry, reaction, which may or may not include actual "havoc".

Alternately you can describe the language itself with a metaphor such as "inflammatory": "likely to start a fire", or metaphorically "intended or likely to cause anger or hate"

The speaker's inflammatory rhetoric stirred up intense anger in the crowd, although he fell just short of advocating any actual violence.

"caustic": "burning as if with acid", or metaphorically "harshly critical"

The columnist launched into a caustic diatribe against the government, accusing them of rampant corruption from top to bottom

"virulent": "like a dangerous virus", or metaphorically "fierce and full of hate":

The politicians virulent attacks against the government incited many of his supporters to send death threats to their local representatives.

and various others. Alternately still, there is the verb "incite"

incite (v): to encourage someone to do or feel something unpleasant or violent, or to cause violent or unpleasant actions. "The ads were trying to incite public opinion against the government."

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