I realise this is by now an old post, but can someone explain to me what, in this context, the word ‘chutzpah’ means? As a brit, this word doesn’t come up in daily life for me (never once heard it said out loud) and the Wikipedia definition simply seems to state that it means boldness or audacity for the quality of good or bad. In this context, what does that entail?
The classic example of chutzpah is a man who kills his parents, and then pleads for the court’s mercy on the grounds that he’s an orphan. Think “brazen effrontery.”
I live in America and don’t really hear this word being used much either, but I believe the “boldness” comes from trying to use the actions of another person to absolve yourself from being responsible for an incident you initiated.
After all, it takes a special kind of audacity to claim self-defense in for stabbing a guy who shot you if you stabbed first.
EDIT: Just saw Nathan’s post and am sad there’s no edit button. I suppose a marginally better definition would be “the guilty party attempting to claim innocence via something that the guilty party was directly responsible for.”
The British equivalent would be “brass neck”.