The definition given in this image comes across as a bit strange to me. I guess that I have never thought of chutzpah in this light.. but I am from New York City. When I think about the word I think about a person standing their ground and not being intimidated.

What do you think when you hear it?
Unmitigated gall or great fortitude?


  1. Started to think about how chutzpah compared to another word of Yiddish origin: moxie.

    I think whether you have Moxie or Chitzpah, you are worthy of admiration. You've got the cleverness, creativity and (pardon the vulgerness) cojones to deal with a potential threat.

    Maybe when its within the boundaries of something you yourself would do, it's moxie. Otherwise, its chutzpah.

    I'm sure someone with more linguistic or Yiddish knowledge could shed more light than this! But no, the simple "unmitigated gall" doesn't do it for me.

  2. I definitely don't think of someone who killed his parents. I've always heard chutzpah used a lot more positively.

    I think of both gall (not necessarily unmitigated) and fortitude, except that chutzpah would be fortitude expressed in some brazen way.

  3. @Ed - Love the comparison with moxie!

    @Paul - Ditto what you said about the parent killer. That would seem to be more in the realm of delusion rather than chutzpah.

  4. It use to mean unmitaged gall and then came to be used as someone who was strong or brave. The word is actually not a very positive word. It projects self-serving, insolent, mis-placed bravery.


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