de·​vi·​ance | \ ˈdē-vē-ən(t)s How to pronounce deviance (audio) \

Definition of deviance

: deviant quality, state, or behavior

Examples of deviance in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This Catholic form of revanchism would obliterate church-state barriers and superimpose a terrestrial layer of morality and control, under the auspices of natural law, to root out deviance and knit together the republic. Peter Hammond Schwartz, The New Republic, "Originalism Is Dead. Long Live Catholic Natural Law.," 3 Feb. 2021 Early urban reformers, such as Jacob Riis and Jane Addams in the first decades of the twentieth century, were quick to link urban blight and social deviance. Max Holleran, The New Republic, "The Future of Staying Home," 3 Dec. 2020 Schools in the country will also remain open, a deviance from the first round of quarantines. Spencer Neale, Washington Examiner, "'We must stop this wave': Greece reenters lockdown amid coronavirus surge," 6 Nov. 2020 Associating disease with deviance fosters inequality, and has been associated with poor compliance with testing, prevention and treatment policies. WSJ, "Trump: Anti-Covid Commander and Patient," 9 Oct. 2020 The reason reality shows about hoarding flourished a decade ago, the critic Scott Herring has argued, is that hoarding was a special case in which the larger culture tipped into definable deviance. Rafil Kroll-zaidi, Harper's Magazine, "Reason Not the Need," 15 Sep. 2020 Lopez, however, brings such a breathless, seemingly effortless blend of manic desperation, sincerity, and deviance to Hustlers that to nominate anyone else who doesn’t bring at least that caliber to the screen is just a crime. Candice Frederick, Harper's BAZAAR, "12 Snubs and Surprises from the 2020 Oscar Nominations," 14 Jan. 2020 Most of Trump’s loyal Republican officials and thought leaders have allowed the normalization of his political deviance by their deeds and failure to speak out. Doug Friednash, The Denver Post, "Friednash: Trump’s assault on the truth has endangered our republic," 22 Nov. 2019 Mr Trump’s deviance from prior norms raises this bar. The Economist, "The move towards impeachment marks a dangerous shift," 26 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'deviance.' 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 deviance

1941, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for deviance

Time Traveler

The first known use of deviance was in 1941

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Statistics for deviance

Last Updated

11 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Deviance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for deviance


de·​vi·​ance | \ ˈdē-vē-ən(t)s How to pronounce deviance (audio) \

Medical Definition of deviance

: deviant quality, state, or behavior

More from Merriam-Webster on deviance

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for deviance

Britannica English: Translation of deviance for Arabic Speakers

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