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

Definition of coercive

: serving or intended to coerce coercive power coercive measures

Other Words from coercive

coercively adverb
coerciveness noun

Examples of coercive in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web That fits broader extensive research from cognitive science on how people can be impacted by nudges, meaning non-coercive efforts to shape the environment so as to influence people’s behavior in a predictable manner. Gleb Tsipursky, Fortune, 20 May 2022 To a large extent, women in China have already lived a version of The Handmaid’s Tale after the less coercive family planning campaigns of the 1970s gave way to the one-child policy by 1980. Jane Li, Quartz, 12 May 2022 When the United States was founded, a bill of rights got locked into the Constitution to ensure that personal liberties were protected from a coercive government. Dennis Wagner, USA TODAY, 2 Aug. 2021 Tripti Lahiri: China is pretty unique, because there probably isn’t another country that was able to, or could have implemented such a coercive policy for such a long time. Kira Bindrim, Quartz, 10 May 2022 The school argued allowing such prayer would constitute its unconstitutional endorsement of religion, with a coercive effect on players who participated and a stigmatizing effect on those who did not. Dan Eaton, San Diego Union-Tribune, 9 May 2022 Over the past few years, minor successes in rebuffing China’s coercive fleets has sparked something of a low-tech arms race. Craig Hooper, Forbes, 7 May 2022 This is not unusual for coercive spiritual organizations, says Benscoter, the former Moonie who now specializes in psychological manipulation. Ej Dickson, Rolling Stone, 18 Apr. 2022 In 2018, Boris Barrera, a member of the Chilean congress, launched an inquiry into the coercive adoptions. Jake Lefferman, ABC News, 12 Apr. 2022 See More

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.

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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Dictionary Entries Near coercive



coercive force

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Statistics for coercive

Last Updated

25 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Coercive.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for coercive


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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