Is there any synonym for 'role model"?

Discussion in 'English Only' started by roniy, Jan 28, 2007.

  1. roniy Senior Member

    Brooklyn NY
    ISRAEL: Fluent Hebrew ( Speak Russian, Learning English)
    Is there any synonym for 'role model"?
    Do you know any ?
    I was thinking about ' good example'.
    Does this phrase work in this example ?

    do you know any other widely used ?
    Thanks .
  2. Siberia

    Siberia Senior Member

    UK-Wales - English
    I think a good example is fine for role model. I can only think of someone to emulate, worthy of imitation. So I guess yours is better.
  3. gregitaliano

    gregitaliano Senior Member

    'Mentor' maybe?

  4. LV4-26

    LV4-26 Senior Member

    Is a role model necessarily a good example?
  5. Porteño Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    British English
    I would certainly have thought so LVA-26. Why do you ask?
  6. river Senior Member

    U.S. English
    Role model - someone whose life is taken as a good example to follow.

    So, no. Instead of "good example" use "example."
  7. LV4-26

    LV4-26 Senior Member

    I thought a role model was an example that you're eager to follow. Just that. An example you could consider good or suitable for you to imitate but that wouldn't necessarily be good in others' eyes. I mean I can imagine someone choosing a crook or a car stealer as a "role model".
    Or am I mistaken as to the actual meaning of the phrase?
  8. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    Good point, Jean-Michel. The usual use of role model has positive connotations, but it could be used to indicate an example of unattractive behavior: Hitler was Mussolini's role model. The copycat killer saw Mr. XXXXX as a role model. The naughty girl picked the class bully as her role model, and pulled other girls' pigtails.
  9. emma42 Senior Member

    North East USA
    British English
    "Hero" is sometimes used as a synonym for "role-model", although it doesn't necessarily mean one will actively copy one's hero. Perhaps one will simply admire him/her.

    I want to be just like him. He is my hero.

    Shakespeare is one of my heroes. I want to write plays like him.

    Aretha Franklin is a hero* of mine. I try to emulate her phrasing when I sing.

    *also, "heroine" (feminine), but "hero" is often used to refer to both male and female.
  10. Porteño Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    British English
    Indeed, that puts a new slant on things. Yes, it is conceivable that a role model might not necessarily be a 'good' example. In that sense the term 'mentor' could well fit the bill as a synonym.

    'Hitler was Mussolini's mentor.'
  11. emma42 Senior Member

    North East USA
    British English
    Hitler was Mussolini's hero.

    I am championing my own suggestion!
  12. Kamelie

    Kamelie Senior Member

    I think a "mentor" is somebody who teaches a younger person or furthers his or her talents. Your teacher/patron might well be your role model, but a role model could also be someone you've never personally met. A young girl in a casting show might think of Christina Aguilera as her role model, but Aguilera wouldn't be her mentor.

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