Egotism is the drive to maintain and enhance favorable views of oneself, and generally features an inflated opinion of one’s personal features and importance — intellectual, physical, social and other.

The egotist has an overwhelming sense of the centrality of the ‘Me’: of their personal qualities. Egotism means placing oneself at the core of one’s world with no concern for others, including those loved or considered as “close,” in any other terms except those set by the egotist.

Characteristics

Egotism is closely related to “loving one’s self” or narcissism – indeed some would say “by egotism we may envisage a kind of socialized narcissism”. Egotists have a strong tendency to talk about themselves in a self-promoting fashion, and they may well be arrogant and boastful with a grandiose sense of their own importance. Their inability to recognise the accomplishments of others leaves them profoundly self-promoting; while sensitivity to criticism may lead on the egotist’s part to narcissistic rage at a sense of insult.

Looked at differently, the conceit of egotism describes a person who acts to gain values in an amount excessively greater than that which he or she gives to others. Egotism may be fulfilled by exploiting the sympathy, irrationality or ignorance of others, as well as utilizing coercive force and/or fraud.

Egotism differs from both altruism – or acting to gain fewer values than are being given– and from egoism, the unremitting pursuit of one’s own self-interest. Various forms of “empirical egoism” can be consistent with egotism, but do not necessitate having an inflated sense of self.

Leave a Reply