Grammar Monster
Grammar Monster

immoral and amoral - the difference

The Quick Answer
Immoral means morally wrong.
Amoral means not related to morality.


The adjective immoral means not adhering to moral principles (i.e., deliberately breaking the rules of right and wrong).

  • Stop looking at Peter's answers. Your conduct is immoral.


The adjective amoral is very technical and quite rare. It means not related to morality. It pertains to the noun amorality. Amorality is a state in which the concept of right and wrong is invalid. Examples:
  • Deciding which scent you like best is an amoral decision.
  • The scientists try not to consider whether their research is right or wrong. They are encouraged to adopt a totally amoral attitude.
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