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honour killing

This page is about the doublespeak term honour killing

Meaning: the murder of one family member by another after a social taboo has been broken

For example:

  • The police suspect the girl's murder was a so-called "honour killing".

  • Ahmed's parents said the "honour killing" of their gay son was necessary to protect the family name.

These murders occur in conservative Middle Eastern and South Asian families that feel "shamed" because a family member is thought to have broken a social taboo, esp. one related to love, sex or sexuality. Examples include brothers killing their sister because she has a boyfriend, or parents killing a son because he's gay or because they or their neighbours suspect he's gay. Also "honor killing" (US spelling).

Quick Quiz:

Her murder was called an "honour killing" because she was

a. killed by her family

b. ashamed of her family

c. honoured by her family

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Contributor: Matt Errey