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Hypocrite / Literature

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  • A Brother's Price has a Lampshade Hanging example, where Ren starts a sentence with "I may sound quite the hypocrite" or a version thereof. She refers to the fact that she thinks it is perfectly okay for Jerin to say "no" to her younger sister, while she herself ignored his half-hearted attempts to get her to stop seducing him. The topic of consent is discussed in the ensuing conversation.
  • The Pharisees from The Bible. They adamantly enforce Old Testament law yet they broke a lot of rules so they can have Jesus arrested. Jesus spends half the gospels calling them out on this, often painting them as an example of a person who acts like they're Holier Than Thou but is really a sinner hiding behind a facade of holiness.
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  • Bravelands: In Broken Pride, Stinger believes that the stubbornly tradtional Grub would bring danger and disaster upon the Brightforest baboon troop, the latter being close-minded and unable to listen to his critics. Yet in Code Of Honor, Stinger abuses his role as leader by imprisoning his critics and smearing his opponents' reputation, something that not even Grub would do. As soon as it's revealed that he goaded Stronghide the rhino into murdering the Great Mother, he had become even worse than what he accused the more conservative Grub of being.
  • The Cask of Amontillado: It's pretty ballsy for Fortunato to call Luchesi a drunk who doesn't appreciate fine wine when he himself is hammered on the stuff.
  • Willy Wonka from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. He considers chewing gum "really gross" and detestable, yet seemingly sees no wrong in making profit from selling it (in the book, he explicitly states his desire to get that flawed gum right so he can sell it). He also disdains fat children, yet sees no wrong in selling chocolate, and general candy, even though sweets are a leading cause of child obesity. It is also kind of hard to believe his claim that the Oompa-Loompas' songs about each badly behaved child's encounter with Laser-Guided Karma were spontaneous and not prepared in advance; if he did have those songs prepared in advance it would mean that he expected them to get into those dangerous accidents and took no measures to prevent them.
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  • In Coda, Anthem lampshades that he's this when he tracks—even more so after he becomes a Corp musician.
  • In "Consider Her Ways" by John Wyndham, one character claims that while the Gendercide was unfortunate, it had the positive side effect of liberating women from male oppression. She says this as a member of an elite ruling class in a strictly caste-based society in which reproduction and education are firmly controlled and dissidents are harshly punished, possibly even executed.
  • In the Deryni novels by Katherine Kurtz, some of the members of the Camberian Council express contempt for Morgan and Duncan because of their half-breed parentage (which of course they did not choose), despite the fact that there are other people who regard all Deryni (including the Council, if they were known) with contempt (and worse) and none of them chose to be be Deryni.
  • The Devil's Dictionary: Many of the entries invoke this, such as the one for "Christian":
    One who believes that the New Testament is a divinely inspired book admirably suited to the spiritual needs of his neighbor. One who follows the teachings of Christ so long as they are not inconsistent with a life of sin.
    • Then of course there is the definition itself:
    Hypocrite, n. One who, profession [sic] virtues that he does not respect secures the advantage of seeming to be what he despises.
  • In The Diamond Age hypocrisy is examined by several characters, notably Finkle-McGraw and Napier.
    "We take a somewhat different view of hypocrisy," Finkle-McGraw continued. "In the late-twentieth-century Weltanschauung, a hypocrite was someone who espoused high moral views as part of a planned campaign of deception — he never held these beliefs sincerely and routinely violated them in privacy. Of course, most hypocrites are not like that. Most of the time it’s a spirit-is-willing, flesh-is-weak sort of thing."
    "That we occasionally violate our own stated moral code," Major Napier said, working it through, "does not imply that we are insincere in espousing that code."
  • Violette of The Dinosaur Lords claims to embrace her sect's ideals of equality and pacifism, but clearly considers those who were once noblemen to be more equal than others, and takes great liking to brutally policing the people under Garden's rule.
  • Tris in the Divergent series oftentimes criticizes other characters for doing things she herself does all the time. One glaring example comes in the first book when she considers Al a coward for "refusing to act" (he doesn't want to knock fellow initiates unconscious) just one chapter after Tris herself stands idly by while her best friend hangs from a railing and nearly dies.
  • Catherine Dollanganger in V. C. Andrews' Dollanganger Series (to be fair, not until the final book of the series), in spades. She carries on an affair with her brother Chris, yet blasts her son Bart and daughter-in-law Melodie (who is married to Bart's brother Jory) for their adulterous affair. In response, Bart (who frequently cavorts with other married women as well) sneeringly reminds her "what I do with Melodie is far less sinful that what you do with Chris". Similarly, youngest daughter Cindy is constantly reprimanded for her promiscuity by both her mother and her brother Bart (to the point of verbal and physical abuse), when she's neither related to nor cheating on/with any of the guys she's involved with.
  • Dora, the eponymous character of Dora Wilk Series, considers shipping a terrible practice and is visibly annoyed with Baal when she finds out he's shipping her with Miron, but at the same time starts "playing little Cupid" to Inga and Olaf.
    • Her antagonist, Raphael, is much worse. He's the local poster boy for Fantastic Racism, preaching hatred of non-angels, and especially half-angelic hybrids. Yet he's also the one who has a half-magical son... Indeed, that's one of the things that make Dora consider other reasons for his jerkassery.
  • The Dresden Files:
    • In the book Skin Game, Ascher says that she hated Harry because he flirted with her...conveniently forgetting the part where she offered to have sex with him. This is one of many hints that Lasciel has suborned her mind.
    • In Cold Days, Murphy talks about how Harry's Mantle-induced tendency to battle scares her. Yet in Blood Rites, she reacts exactly the same way to fighting.
    • Also in Cold Days, Molly assures Harry (when she lets him stay in her apartment) that she's not asking him to shack up with her. 23 chapters later, she sexually propositions him. Again.
    • Then in the short story Cold Case, set right after Cold Days, where Mab informs Molly that all of the Winter Queens experience the same need for lust and power that the rest of their court goes through. Molly however as the Winter Maiden can't have sex while Mab the Winter Mother can. It's quite hypocritical to tell someone they have to have the same burden as everyone else when they're the only one that can't satisfy it. It's like saying everyone needs to take turns walking but only one of them never gets to rest because of reasons.
    • Harry believes knowledge is power and always rages when allies and those with more experience then him withhold information to protect him, but through out the series won't give his friends information in the name of protecting THEM. It in fact has gotten people hurt and/or killed more then once. Despite that Harry tend to only be upfront and tell people things when his back's against the wall with no other choice.
  • Sinclair Lewis's Elmer Gantry is a classic of the type. Although with a goodly amount of Snake Oil Salesman thrown in. Gantry works as a minister and says that his aim is to "save souls", even though he doesn't really believe in Christianity; he's a Dry Crusader, who actually loves drinking (though he eventually manages to quit) and he rails against sexual sins, while he cheats on his wife with a married woman. It's hard to think of a Sinclair Lewis novel that wasn't populated almost to the point of exclusivity with these.
  • Elsabeth Soesten's friend and companion, Brother Hieronymus is shamelessly so. He's constantly Slut-Shaming Elsabeth, despite frequently making lewd remarks about and hitting on her, all while frequenting brothels himself.
  • Everworld:
    • Senna tries to give David, Jalil, April, and Christopher to Hel. After the whole thing is said and done, they all give Senna crap for it, but she brushes it off with a really weak I Did What I Had to Do type excuse. Five books later, Senna's mother tries to give Senna to Merlin in order to make it so that Loki, Ka Anor, and the other gods can't use her as a Gateway and invade the real world. Senna completely loses her composure.
    • Later, David notes (in his narration) that while Senna believes that she can do anything to anyone, she also believes that anything done to her is unforgivable and that this should not come as a shock to anyone.
  • One of the defining traits of Hazel in The Fault in Our Stars. She spends a lot of time criticizing others for how they speak to cancer patients and how they react to details of their lives and any number of other things only to speak, think and react the exact same way herself in other situations - sometimes even saying outright that it's okay when she does it. When the antagonist (the author of her favorite book) shows up he is portrayed as a complete jerk but he behaves exactly like Hazel and Gus except he behaves that way towards them.
  • In the Father Brown story "The Chief Mourner of Marne", everyone is critical of Father Brown's attitude to a man who has hidden away like a hermit following a crime, thinking he's hypocritical in not offering forgiveness. When it transpires his actual crime was something different and arguably worse, they're equally horrified that Brown is even speaking to him. He quietly points out that his position hasn't changed, but they were only prepared to "forgive" someone they didn't really think was wrong in the first place.
  • In Flawed, most people who actively attack the Flawed are hypocrites, showing their own deep personality flaws while persecuting others. While tormenting Celestine, Logan proves himself a liar, and only avoids punishment due to more lying. Judge Craven, meanwhile, abusively gave her an extra, unlawful, brand and then went out of his way to cover it up, proving himself to also be a liar and a poor decision-maker.
  • Happens in The Great Gatsby with some Double Standard thrown in. Tom proudly shows off his mistress to Nick and has repeatedly cheated on his wife before but becomes incredibly pissed off when he finds out she and Gatsby are having an affair.
  • Max Beerbohm's The Happy Hypocrite. And why is he happy? Because he became the mask. Literally.
  • Halo:
    • Halo: Hunters in the Dark: 000 Tragic Solitude claims that the people of the modern galaxy are a violent, hopeless case, unlike his ideal image of the Forerunners. Olympia Vale reminds him that the Forerunners most likely went through the exact same thing in their millions of years of development (she's right, in case you were wondering); Solitude just replies that maybe the Forerunners ultimately deserved to die too.
    • The Kilo-Five Trilogy: The main human characters, including ONI head Admiral Parangosky, universally condemn Dr. Halsey's role in the SPARTAN-II program as abhorrent, specifically the part where children were kidnapped and transformed into super-soldiers, with doomed-to-die clones taking their original place. However, Parangosky not only approved of everything Halsey did but worked with Colonel Ackerson to do the virtually same thing with the Spartan-IIIs, by taking orphaned children from glassed planets and deliberately sending them on suicide missions; while Halsey genuinely cares about her Spartans and made sure they had all the tools needed to survive, Parangosky considered the IIIs as expendable commandos (in Halo: Ghosts of Onyx, she even mocks Halsey as being a "bleeding-heart"). It's hinted that Parangosky mostly scapegoated Dr. Halsey to cover the rest of ONI's ass (herself included). Topping this off, the members of ONI unit Kilo-Five all consider Halsey to be the devil as well but have considerably less problem working for Parangosky.
  • Harry Potter:
    • Lord Voldemort and his Death Eaters are prejudiced against wizards with less than pure wizarding blood and non-human magical creatures in general despite he himself having a muggle parent. While he's counting on the anti-Muggle feelings of his followers, he genuinely despises Muggles and anything he considers Mud-blood — and he apparently has a one drop rule for everyone except himself and personal Death Eaters like Snape. While they also recruited Giants and Werewolves, they probably rationalized them as second and third-tier "citizens" in Voldemort's new England.
      • It was suggested a few times that he was exploiting the prejudices of his own followers more than enforcing his own and that he really didn't care about anything but his own power anymore. Voldemort's own half-blood status was one of the reasons he started going after power. He considered his father to be lowly and weak and cowardly for turning away his mother and was determined to ignore his own history and go with wanting power.
    • And then we have Dolores Umbridge. Although fans have a lot of reasons to hate her with relish, her hypocrisy is certainly one of the main ones. In her introductory book, she is seen as an agent of the Ministry, sycophantic to its causes and forcing tyrannical laws onto the school in order to get her own way, yet at the same time, she gleefully (although secretly) engages in activities that are highly illegal and certainly unforgivable, even by the Ministry. Worse, she punishes Harry most severely for asserting that Voldemort is at large, insisting that he "not tell lies" while aping the official Ministry line on Voldemort, which is patently and obviously false (though this may be a case of Believing Their Own Lies instead). In the final book, she persecutes Muggle-borns for "stealing magic" which she should certainly know is a nonsensical charge while claiming that the locket she took as a bribe is an old family heirloom supporting her own bloodline. The injustice and cruelty of this enrages Harry so much that he attacks her immediately without resorting to a more subtle plan.
    • Draco Malfoy loses his temper at Harry and tries to curse him because Harry has insulted his mother, even though Malfoy insulted Ron's own mother mere lines earlier.
      • Draco is an even worse hypocrite in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child as he gets furious at Harry calling him out for splitting up his son Scorpius with his Harry's son Albus, Draco is the last person who call anyone out on segregation or morals. He is also very critical of Hermione's work as Minister of magic, even though Voldermort and the Death Eaters (whom he was one of) took over the Ministry by force.
    • Sirius Black, too, despite his axiom that the measure of a man is how he treats his inferiors, he behaves detestably towards Kreacher (since Kreacher reminds him of the house and the family he hated while growing up). Indeed, this is one of his least admirable qualities. It also bites him in the arse. Hard. But as Dumbledore clarifies, Sirius was kind to House Elves in general but Kreacher was special as a reminder of his home and the bad childhood that he hoped to escape.
      • Also, his belief that "the world isn't split into good people and Death Eaters" goes out the window during the argument with Snape. Though the latter is himself not blameless in that regard. Word of God admits that this is a serious flaw for Sirius, but she also admits that it's difficult to be morally consistent in life.
    • Lupin in the third book tells Harry that he's appalled that Harry never brought the Marauder's Map to a teacher's attention given how useful it would be to catch Sirius or how useful it'd be to Sirius if he found it. Yet Lupin never bothers telling Dumbledore (or anyone except Harry, Ron, and Hermione) that Sirius is an animagus and knows about the tunnel from the Shrieking Shack onto Hogwarts grounds.
    • Even though he was bullied by the Marauders, Severus Snape does nothing to stop Malfoy and the Slytherins from bullying Harry and company and even bullies them himself. Snape's bullying of Hermione in particular is very ironic since she's a gifted muggle-born witch very similar to Lily whom Snape deeply loved all his life. Snape even gets angry at Phineas Nigellus Black calling Hermione a "Mudblood" likely remembering his Moment of Weakness when he called Lily that, yet he had no qualms bullying Hermione viciously.
    • Molly Weasley's complaints about her oldest son Bill (who's 26) jumping into marriage too fast and how just like in the previous war "people are eloping left, right, and center." One of her other children points out that she and Arthur got married right out of school, meaning she got married even younger than Bill and Fleur, but Molly brushes it off as her and Arthur being "meant for each other".
      • Earlier in Goblet of Fire, despite her protests she clearly believed the lies Rita Skeeter wrote about Hermione... and then berated Amos Diggory for believing the lies Rita Skeeter told about people.
    • Hermione, while she is a very good person, is still an Insufferable Genius and her actions and words do contradict each other a lot.
      • She's a huge Soap Box Sadie for House Elf's rights and frequently lectures Harry on the best way to treat Kreacher and even states Sirius deserved what he got for how he treated Kreacher. While her intentions are pure, it's worth noting Harry is the one who freed Dobby and inspired Kreacher while Hermione's own attempts to liberate House Elves are complete failures in comparison. Also her efforts to liberate House Elves involve hiding woolen hats under rubbish which the Elves will unthinkably pick up, meaning she's essentially trying to trick and force them into freedom which is an incredibly scummy thing to do, Ron rightly calls her out on it. Worse of all during the Yue Ball Hermione was having such a good time that she doesn't even comment on how the event is probably overworking the House Elves in the kitchens to the extreme, in essence showing the same neglect to them that she despises in others.
      • She frequently bemoans Harry, Ron and others for not reading as many books and studying as much she does. Yet in the sixth book when Harry starts reading the Half-Blood Prince's potion's book and doing very well in Potions because of it, Hermione gets extremely pissy not being the best in the class and becomes a real Sore Loser in the process. She also claims Harry is cheating by using the notes in the Prince's book, Hermione herself in the third book used the Time-Turner to get to as many classes as possible improving her overall grade through suspect means, just like Harry.
      • Hermione is highly vocal against violence, cruelty and torturous methods such as the Cruciatus Curse. However she herself has absolutely no qualms delivering some Disproportionate Retribution to Marietta Edgecombe for ratting on DA cursing her permanent pimples that read "SNEAK" across her face which Marietta still has a book later.
      • In the seventh book Hermione out of guilt for destroying Harry's Phoenix feather wand encourages him to get used to a new wand and writes off his complainants that it feels wrong. When she is forced to use Bellatrix Lestrange's wand to infiltrate Gringotts, Hermione moans and frets not liking it at all, Harry thinks about calling her out on it but decides to not antagonize her.
      • Hermione also prides herself as "sensible" (which JK supports) yet in the books, we see that Hermione is very much capable of being immature when things don't go her way and is highly temperamental especially when it comes to poor Ron. This includes attacking him with conjured birds in a fit of jealously after seeing him kiss Lavender Brown.
  • Zoey is juggling three-to-four boys for the first half of The House of Night, yet she calls Aphrodite out for being "slutty."
  • Knight Templar Claude Frollo of The Hunchback of Notre Dame believes that Sex Is Evil and that his chastity makes him better than everyone else and that gypsies are sinful pagan scum. Then he falls in lust with Esmeralda, a gypsy dancer.
  • The Hunger Games: Various characters have their moments, but a few from Katniss stand out. One being that she judges Madge for having an expensive pin that could feed starving families, yet isn't bothered when she herself is later clad in incredibly expensive outfits. There's also her judgement of fellow tributes because of their killing when she doesn't make any attempt to restrain her own killing — on a few occasions, she even mentions how her fingers are itching for her knife/arrows just because Johanna snapped at her. She also complains a great deal about the wasting of food, when she, in fact, does it herself (when she threw out the gift of cookies from Peeta's father, for example).
  • In Death series: Principal Mosebly is revealed to be this in Innocent In Death. She claims to stand for the school and its best interests. However, it turns out that she was not only aware that one teacher (Reed Williams) had been having sex with the parents of schoolchildren and engaging in sexual harassment, but she had sex with him in the pool and in her own office! She only took steps to have him resign when she found out that he had rape drugs in his possession and that he was the prime suspect of murdering a teacher in the school. Peabody refers to her as a Hypocrite at one point.
  • In the Conference arc of The Irregular at Magic High School, Tatsuya says that the magical community does not enforce Arranged Marriages (only encourage them). This prompts Mari to ask how much choice Tatsuya and his sister had in who they were married to.
  • Mr. Brocklehurst in Jane Eyre has the girls at Jane's boarding school, over which he is superintendent, fed meals lacking in nutritional value and given sleeping quarters that are less than fit for any humans, ostensibly to teach humility...yet his own children are comfortably clothed, housed and fed.
  • There's a very subtle example in The Lord of the Rings (which is explained outright in Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-earth). Saruman openly berates Gandalf for his use of tobacco, but in private, in an attempt to imitate Gandalf, becomes addicted to pipeweed himself. Note that in the movie, Saruman says, "Your love of the halflings' leaf has clearly slowed your mind" but Merry and Pippin find several large barrels of tobacco in Saruman's home later on.
  • Henry Crawford of Mansfield Park claims to be a Ladykiller in Love with the heroine, yet has no problem running off with her cousin after proposing to her and considering them engaged; fancies himself a Prince Charming who wants to make Fanny Price happy, yet deliberately averts I Want My Beloved to Be Happy because, truthfully, It's All About Me. In context, even he has no idea how contradictory his statements and actions are.
  • The Lost Years of Merlin: Nimue steals Merlin's staff in The Seven Songs of Merlin, calling him a thief when he snatches it back from her with the help of an air spirit.
  • In G. K. Chesterton's The Man Who Was Thursday, Syme discusses poetry with some examples from health and sickness.
    "Really," said Gregory superciliously, "the examples you choose—"
    "I beg your pardon," said Syme grimly, "I forgot we had abolished all conventions."
    • Later, when Gregory has brought Syme to an anarchist stronghold, and Syme has revealed that he is a policeman (both under The Promise to not reveal the information), Syme makes a fire-breathing anarchist speech. Gregory calls him a hypocrite. Syme says he is only doing his duty.
  • The Mortal Instruments:
    • Valentine Morgenstern expresses hatred and disdain for the mixed-breed Downworlders and contends that the Shadowhunters must keep the world safe from demons. But he deliberately taints his own son with demon blood, making him into a strange human/angel/demon hybrid, and even tried using demon blood to change himself with unclear results. He also readily summons and uses large numbers of demons to fight for him, as well as dealing with the powerful Greater Demon Lilith. Raziel calls him out on it.
    • The vampire Raphael Santiago badgers Simon relentlessly about the need to accept that he is dead to humanity and must sever all ties to his former life. However, it's said that he puts on a cross and visits his family every Sunday.
  • The eponymous villain of Mortarion's Heart uses psyker powers extensively while mocking the "little witches", i.e. Grey Knights order. Horus Heresy, set ten millenniums earlier, shows that he's always had that problem.
  • One Of Us Is Lying: Simon acts as if his gossip app is a public service, exposing people's nasty secrets, when in fact he just enjoys the power that comes from tearing people down. When he talks to Bronwyn at the beginning, he gives the example of a boy he's recently exposed who taped girls without their knowledge: surely people are better off knowing what he's up to? It doesn't seem to occur to him to actually do some good by taking that information to the police. He also looks down on the popular kids and those who look up to them but is really desperate to be popular himself and rigged the Junior Prom vote so he'd be on the court.
  • Paradise Lost: Satan's arguments against God are founded largely on principles of democracy and egalitarianism, but he himself is an absolute monarch in Hell and asserts that everybody agreed to make him leader without asking anyone to vote. The demons are all too stupid to notice the hypocrisy, but Gabriel exposes the Devil's lies with every verse he gets.
  • Julien Sorel in The Red and the Black idolizes Napoleon and dreams of being a war hero. But he figures he can earn both social status and a good income by becoming a priest, so he pursues that unsuitable vocation, fully aware of his hypocrisy.
  • Jane Rizzoli of the Rizzoli & Isles series:
    • She spends the first book lusting after her handsome partner and the second one lusting after a handsome FBI agent...but blasts said partner for falling in love with a beautiful doctor and is quite contemptuous of any man who falls for a beautiful woman. Apparently only women can be attracted to someone comely. When a man is, he's a shallow jerk.
    • Also, she blasts her partner for falling in love with the doctor as she's a victim/witness in their case and his lack of objectivity could compromise the investigation. Ironically, she has a point about this, but she still conveniently ignores the fact that her dislike of the woman could cause the same problem.
    • She constantly complains about how she's dismissed and mistreated because of her plain and average looks...instantly assumes that every attractive woman that she meets is dumb, bitchy, etc., and treats them like dirt. Worse yet, she actually has a sliver of sympathy for beautiful women who are the victims of stalkers, rapists, etc., musing that it must be hard to deal with the harassment that can come from looking a certain way, yet is somehow completely oblivious that she herself contributes to the problem with her own nasty attitude towards such women.
    • She constantly complains about how female cops in general are ill-treated by their male counterparts...screams at a female cop who vomited at a gory crime scene and blasts her for making all female cops look bad (it's heavily implied that she took an instant dislike to the other woman because she's good-looking) while coddling the male cop who had the same reaction. She has a Heel Realization a few days later when the poor woman later ends up dead because she's so humiliated by the whole thing that she tries to compensate by rushing into a dangerous situation without proper backup and ends up killed by the suspect.
    • She prides herself on not showing any weakness or vulnerability, not wanting to give her opponents anything to use against her...when Dr. Catherine Cordell does the same thing, refusing to break down while discussing the night she was raped and almost killed, acts like she's some abnormal freak.
  • Daylen in Shadow of the Conqueror, as a running theme:
    • As emperor, he eventually used tactics and policies that contradicted every ideal he claimed to be fighting for, such as giving special privileges to his soldiers to keep them loyal to him—effectively creating a new aristocracy. He declared that no one would own property in the Dawn Empire, not even him, but as the absolute monarch of a totalitarian government, that effectively meant that the entire empire was his own personal property. He also outlawed sex slaves, then proceeded to kidnap and rape hundreds of girls who were still in their teens.
    • After undergoing his transformation and beginning his Redemption Quest, Daylen constantly complains how petty, immature, overly sensitive, and self-righteous everyone around him is. As Ahrek points out, the person who best exemplifies all of those traits is ... Daylen himself. Daylen responds with a Hypocrisy Nod.
    • Daylen immediately starts executing rapists and murderers in the most brutal fashion possible, taking every opportunity to say how despicable those kinds of people are. Daylen also won't tolerate anyone judging him, who has hundreds of rapes and tens of millions of murders under his belt.
    • After pissing Lyrah off by mashing one of her trauma buttons, Daylen is "stunned" at what a Mood-Swinger she is. He then immediately proceeds to froth at the mouth in rage over her calling him "a pubescent troublemaker" and "kid." He makes another Hypocrisy Nod over this, marveling at how absurd it is for him to be angry with her of all people for such a small thing as being bossy, but Daylen's unstable emotional register doesn't always keep up with his reasoning.
    • After administering some corporal punishment on Sain for not standing in the correct position, Daylen refuses to accept that Sain just forgot about Daylen's orders. Later in the book, after ranting at Lyrah and feeling guilty over it, Daylen tells himself that he only did it because he "forgot" who she was. Really, Daylen?
  • Sisterhood Series by Fern Michaels: Well, now! Prosecutor Jack Emery tries to have the Vigilantes least until the book The Jury. There he was, practically spewing about how lawbreakers should be punished, and yet he never seems to notice that he broke a thousand laws himself in trying to arrest the Vigilantes. Indeed, several authority figures pretty much turn into this in helping the Vigilantes and said authority figures eventually resign from their posts. Double Standards rear their ugly heads more than once, by showing that men mistreating women is a terrible thing and that women mistreating men is a great thing. The books Deja Vu and Home Free show the consequences of this.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire:
    • Tywin Lannister threatens to hang the next whore he finds in the bed of his son Tyrion. Then Tyrion happens to get into his father's bedroom uninvited and unchecked, and guess who he finds there? Shae, Tyrion's own concubine.
    • Tywin's daughter Cersei also exhibits this. She's incredibly misogynistic and shows complete contempt for women, but believes herself to be an exceptional, reasonable and brilliant ruler, even though it's quite obvious she's a cruel, incompetent tyrant.
    • Renly Baratheon tries to usurp the Iron Throne ahead of his elder brother Stannis Baratheon, claiming why the oldest brother and not the best-suited? However, Stannis has had years more experience helping to run the Seven Kingdoms and while his social skills are poor he is devoted to doing his duty to the realm. Renly was basically just a Yes-Man on the Small Council and shows no actual ruling skills outside of good PR.
  • In The Stormlight Archive, Dalinar Kholin constantly has to wrestle with his own hypocrisy, as he often pushes for cooperation for the greater good and demands that people obey the words of the Alethi Codes of War while at the same time hoarding power and breaking religious traditions. he is frequently accused of hypocrisy by other Alethi highprinces and he admits to it, and in particular is called out for the hypocrisy of once being a terrifying and ruthless conqueror who is now pushing for unity and peace. In Oathbringer, he freely admits that he is a hypocrite, but also one who is trying to be a better person.
    The Stormfather: You are not a hypocrite, Son of Honor.
    Dalinar: I am. But sometimes, a hypocrite is nothing more than a man who is in the process of changing.
  • Elizabeth Wakefield in Sweet Valley High. Frequently criticized or looked down on Jessica for being snobby and stuck-up, yet never realized that she was doing the exact same thing. Insisted and practically demanded that HER friends be given a second chance and insisted that people could change for the better, yet always refused to give JESSICA's friends the same consideration.
  • Sword of Truth:
    • Darken Rahl and Queen Milena spout pseudo-communist rhetoric saying people must share the wealth, while both are rich monarchs. They even have the nerve to lecture a peasant about this. Rahl even lives in a vast "People's Palace". Emperor Jagang takes this even further as he advocates this even more strongly while living even more in contradiction to his stated ideal, taking the best for himself. This reflects the Objectivist view, which says no one can ever consistently live out this principle, making hypocrisy inevitable (or just a ploy to attain power).
    • The anti-magic Blood of the Fold's leader himself uses his sorceress sister's magic. At least the Imperial Order excuses this as "using magic to destroy it".
  • Survivor Dogs has Alpha hating Fierce Dogs (Doberman Pinchers) for what they did to him as a pup and he abuses Storm for being one. But in The Endless Lake, he ends up betraying his own pack for the dogs he claimed to hate.
  • Tales of the Bounty Hunters: Much of Fett's behavior isn't justifiable by his own stated morals. Not only that, but he condemns things like drug running in Han Solo, even claiming he's worse than a mass murderer, yet willingly works for Jabba the Hutt (who's a major drug lord) without letting this stop him. Of course, this may have been deliberate to show that Fett's self-image as a fair, just man is totally delusional.
  • Angel Clare oh so much in Tess of the d'Urbervilles. He poses as an intellectual man, which he is, and accepting of other classes. But it takes about a year of suffering in Brazil for him to realize that perhaps abandoning his bride Tess, just because she was not a virgin (by rape nonetheless!) was a cruel, cruel act.
  • In To All the Boys I've Loved Before, after hearing that Lara Jean and Peter supposedly had sex (they just kissed in the hot tub), Margot rants to Lara Jean about becoming another teen statistic. However, Margot herself had slept with her boyfriend Josh during her time at high school (at Lara Jean's age). Lara Jean calls her out on this.
  • The Traitor Son Cycle: The archbishop of Alba condemns the use of magic as being of the devil, yet has a sorcerer in his employ.
  • The Trumpet of the Swan: Louis' father once tells his son that one can pick up more information by listening than by talking. Good advice, except that Louis' father himself never shuts up. One must wonder if he is a distant relative of a certain infamous owl from a certain famous video game.
    "Do not let an unnatural sadness settle over you, Louis," said the cob. "Swans must be cheerful, not sad; graceful, not awkward; brave, not cowardly. Remember that the world is full of youngsters who have some sort of handicap that they must overcome. You apparently have a speech defect. I am sure you will overcome it, in time. There may even be some slight advantage, at your age, in not being able to say anything. It compels you to be a good listener. The world is full of talkers, but it is rare to find anyone who listens. And I assure you that you can pick up more information when you are listening than when you are talking."
    "My father does quite a lot of talking himself," thought Louis.
  • In the fourth Twilight novel, Jacob breaks free from Sam's mind control and leaves his pack, saying, "I'll never take anyone's will away from him." It's set up as this epic, moral-defining moment...which kind of falls apart when one realizes that — in the last two books alone — Jacob sexually abused a girl and guilted her into kissing him, though she clearly did not want to.
    • At the end of the book, the Cullens laugh and consider the Volturi cowards for leaving when they don't have the clear advantage anymore. Not only have the Cullens run from fights where the odds are even slightly against them, the climax of the first book only happened because the seven of them chose to run from three dangerous vampires (actually two, since one later defects).
    • Bella constantly calls other people shallow, but constantly describes Edward's appearance. She claims to be mature for her age, but throws temper tantrums and can't decide between two boys. She claims to respect her father the police chief, but often breaks the law and is willing to leave him.
  • Undefeated Bahamut Chronicle:
    • Listelka criticises her younger sister Aeril for pulling a Heel–Face Turn out of love for Lux, a member of a family who'd betrayed theirs. Leaving aside the fact that it wasn't solely out of love (it was also because she didn't agree with the tyrannical ways of her family), Listelka herself is head-over-heels for Fugil, Lux's older brother who's even less trustworthynote . Literally everyone else, including Aeril and Lux, is wary of Fugil, while Listelka trusts him unconditionally. Sure enough, Fugil ends up literally backstabbing Listelka.
    • The last Emperor of Arcadia is revealed to be surprisingly knowledgeable about how his ancestors, with the help of Fugil, overthrew the aforementioned Listelka and her family for treating the citizens and the Arcadia branch family like cattle. Despite his knowledge and his admiration towards Fugil for saving his ancestors from persecution, he has the audacity to question why his family's hero turned against him, despite how he oppresses his own citizens and performs deadly human experiments on them, becoming much like the previous empire.
    • On two occasions, a person who's become a Nocturnal calls another person a monster: Mel to Krulcifer and the King of Vices to Philuffy. Note that in both cases, the ones being called monsters act much more like humans than the ones doing the calling. What's more, Mel and the King of Vices undergo the transformation willingly while the latter had no choice in their inhuman status: Krulcifer was born an Xfer while Philuffy was subjected to an experiment that turned her into a part-Abyss. Similarly, Hayes mocks Philuffy for being a monster, despite willingly fusing with the strongest Ragnarok and being the person who turned the latter part-Abyss in the first place.
  • The Vagrant (first book of The Vagrant Trilogy):
    • Sir Phia is a Seraph Knight who hates people defying orders. She defies orders herself and risks the mission in order to rescue her lover, then abandons the Vagrant when he won't leave innocents behind. When they meet up again, she blames him for everything.
    • The people of the Six Circles teach their children to hate and fear anything with even the slightest infernal taint, and threaten anyone they don't like with a witch hunt to find evidence of the taint. But when the First arrives and offers to give them all a small amount of taint that will make them stronger and healthier, the people turn on the guards and accept the gift greedily.
  • Warrior Cats has some hypocritical cats:
    • Tigerstar despises kittypets (house cats) and thinks of them as inferior to Clan cats...yet he is mates with one and sires her kits.
    • Hollyleaf believes murder is wrong...yet she murdered Ashfur in cold blood...and after that, she got over it. She also scolds Lionblaze for being friends with a cat from WindClan (Heathertail), yet Jayfeather reminds her that she's friends with Willowshine from RiverClan. When reminded of her punishment of helping RiverClan behind Firestar's back, she defends herself by saying "That was different".
    • It's a part of the Warrior Code to protect your territory and not cross boundaries without reason. Yet, Oakstar ordered his warriors to encroach on kittypets territories and attack them in their own yards.
  • We Are Legion (We Are Bob):
    • When the Free American Independent Theocratic Hegemony gained power, they declared that all frozen humans were dead and immediately sold them for profit. Bob points out that it would have made more sense from their perspective to give them proper burials, and Dr. Landers wryly notes that hyper-religious nutjobs are rarely consistent.
    • A Brazilian Empire gunship fires a missile at HEAVEN-1, and FAITH blows it up. The Brazilians claim that destroying their gunship is an act of war.
  • The Race from Harry Turtledove's Worldwar series has a lot of this going on, potentially as a Take That! at the concept of Manifest Destiny. They denounce all human religions as nonsensical superstitions, but have their own religion and believe in it fervently. They're fine with dropping atomic bombs on human cities,note  but are utterly horrified when humans use nuclear weapons on them. They have no problem with kidnapping babies to see if humans can be raised into "good members" of the Race's star empire, but are disgusted when they find out that the Americans did the same with two immature members of the Race note . And they have absolutely no qualms about importing native fauna to Earth that cause massive ecological damage but hit the roof when a single pair of mice gets released on their homeworld.note  And just to cap it all off, whenever a human character calls them out on their attitude (and it happens a fair bit), they respond with something along the lines of "But it's different when we do it because we are the Race" as if that's the only justification they need.


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