Resentment (also called ranklement or bitterness) is a complex, multilayered emotion that has been described as a mixture of disappointment, disgust, anger, and fear. Other psychologists consider it a mood or as a secondary emotion (including cognitive elements) that can be elicited in the face of insult and/or injury.
Inherent in resentment is a perception of unfairness (i.e. from trivial to very serious), and is a generalized defense against unfair situations (e.g. relationships or unfavourable circumstances).
The word originates from French "ressentir", re-, intensive prefix, and sentir "to feel"; from the Latin "sentire". The English word has become synonymous with anger, spite, and holding a grudge.
Resentment can result from a variety of situations involving a perceived wrongdoing from an individual, which are often sparked by expressions of injustice or humiliation. Common sources of resentment include publicly humiliating incidents such as accepting negative treatment without voicing any protest; feeling like an object of regular discrimination or prejudice; envy/jealousy; feeling used or taken advantage of by others; and having achievements go unrecognized, while others succeed without working as hard. Resentment can also be generated by dyadic interactions, such as emotional rejection or denial by another person, deliberate embarrassment or belittling by another person, or ignorance, putting down, or scorn by another person.