co·​er·​cive | \ kō-ˈər-siv How to pronounce coercive (audio) \

Definition of coercive

: serving or intended to coerce coercive power coercive measures

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Other Words from coercive

coercively adverb
coerciveness noun

Examples of coercive in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Its definition of domestic abuse will include not only physical harm, but also emotional abuse, coercive behavior, and even financial abuse. Shafi Musaddique, The Christian Science Monitor, "Domestic abuse surged in pandemic. Britain pushing back with legal reform.," 23 Apr. 2021 China has taken increasingly coercive action to undercut democracy in Taiwan. Joel Gehrke, Washington Examiner, "China conducts live-fire military drills as Biden friends arrive in Taiwan," 14 Apr. 2021 In his report, the investigator determined that a lot of the information Tapp stated during his interrogation was provided to him by law enforcement and that statements the polygrapher made during the polygraph examinations were coercive in nature. Boaz Halaban, ABC News, "A mother's pursuit for justice overturns wrongful conviction, catches the true killer," 12 Mar. 2021 Smallpox, one of the only pandemics to have been defeated through human effort, was eradicated after a grueling 13-year-long global vaccination drive that sometimes involved coercive and violent efforts, Gross notes. Washington Post, "Vaccination rates are rising, but so are covid cases," 1 Apr. 2021 According to The Institute For Women’s Policy Research, Black women also experience significantly higher rates of psychological abuse—including humiliation, insults, name-calling, and coercive control—than do women overall. Charli Penn, Essence, "The Internet Is Outraged By A Video Showing Saweetie and Quavo In A Physical Altercation," 30 Mar. 2021 The other major coercive, racist, and anti-Chinese act that emerged in the late 19th century is the Chinese Exclusion Act, which banned the immigration of Chinese men as well, doubling down on the Page Act. The Atlantic, "Listen: A History of Pandemic Xenophobia and Racism," 26 Mar. 2021 His groundbreaking work on coercive control has had a major impact on approaches to domestic abuse around the world. Patricia Fersch, Forbes, "Domestic Violence: Coercion And Control Equates To A Loss Of Liberty, Sense Of Self, And Dignity For Women," 19 Mar. 2021 President Joe Biden is engineering a sharp shift in policy toward China, focused on gathering allies to counter Beijing's coercive diplomacy around the world and ensuring that China does not gain a permanent advantage in critical technologies. David E. Sanger And Michael Crowley New York Times, Star Tribune, "Biden forms plan to counter China," 18 Mar. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'coercive.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of coercive

circa 1600, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for coercive

coerce +_ -ive

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Time Traveler for coercive

Time Traveler

The first known use of coercive was circa 1600

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Statistics for coercive

Last Updated

1 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Coercive.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for coercive



English Language Learners Definition of coercive

formal : using force or threats to make someone do something : using coercion


co·​er·​cive | \ kō-ˈər-siv How to pronounce coercive (audio) \

Legal Definition of coercive

1 : serving or intended to coerce
2 : resulting from coercion to protect women from coercive intimacy— Kimberle Crenshaw

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Comments on coercive

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