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degradation (noun) a gradual loss of quality; a state of loss of self-respect or the respect of others.
A gradual loss of the quality of something is degradation. There is a degradation of ethical standards in general if there is a gradual fall in the sense of principles in a society. As the wooden rafters of the building are in a state of degradation, the building is ready to collapse. That is, the rafters have lost their strength and are in no position to support the building. A life of degradation is the kind of life in which the person gets no respect from others and which makes them lose their self-respect. Poverty and bankruptcy lead to the degradation of one's life. That is, when a person is utterly poor, they lose their self-respect as also the respect of others.
- Kaufman was a respected CEO until he was found guilty of embezzling the company funds, and the degradation of his career and life followed naturally.
- By the time people realized the adverse impact of large-scale industrialization on environment it was too late, as by then, the environmental degradation endangering life on earth had become irreversible.