displacement

noun
dis·​place·​ment | \ (ˌ)dis-ˈplā-smənt How to pronounce displacement (audio) , di-ˈsplā-\

Definition of displacement

1 : the act or process of displacing : the state of being displaced a storm that caused the displacement of thousands of people
2a physics : the volume or weight of a fluid (such as water) displaced (see displace sense 2a) by a floating body (such as a ship) of equal weight
b : the difference between the initial position of something (such as a body or geometric figure) and any later position
c mechanical engineering : the volume displaced by a piston (as in a pump or an engine) in a single stroke also, automotive vehicles : the total volume so displaced by all the pistons in an internal combustion engine

3 psychology

a : the redirection of an emotion or impulse from its original object (such as an idea or person) to another the displacement of his emotions
b : the substitution of another form of behavior for what is usual or expected especially when the usual response is nonadaptive or socially inappropriate

called also displacement activity, displacement behavior

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Examples of displacement in a Sentence

The war has caused the displacement of thousands of people. displacements in the Earth's crust soil displacement caused by farming
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Recent Examples on the Web

Both large rent increases and predatory evictions lead to displacement and exacerbate our homelessness crisis. Marisa Kendall, The Mercury News, "After early defeat, California lawmakers try again on eviction protections," 1 July 2019 Mali Rebellion in the north and a coup in 2012 led to refugee departures and the internal displacement of hundreds of thousands. Cynthia Gorney, National Geographic, "African migrants in Europe trade one hardship for another," 25 June 2019 The displacement of black people isn’t only physical but is psychic, too. Collier Meyerson, WIRED, "The Last Black Man Searches for ‘Authenticity’ but There Is None," 6 June 2019 Facial aging is caused by a loss of elasticity, as well as by the gradual displacement of fat pads between muscle and skin, which tend to slide downward over time. April Long, Town & Country, "Do Facial Exercises Really Work?," 4 June 2019 The internal displacement of people, as well as movement of Congolese refugees to neighboring countries, increases the risk of transmission. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "Ebola outbreak reaches city of 1 million residents," 14 Dec. 2018 The goal behind the sidewalk program is to eliminate cracking concrete and trip hazards with no more than one-inch of displacement. John Benson, cleveland.com, "North Olmsted targeting tripping hazards with 2019 sidewalk program," 12 June 2019 Rooted in the Latinx communities of southeast Los Angeles, Vértiz’s poems touch upon survival, resistance and family in the face of displacement and discrimination. Rosa Boshier, Washington Post, "Ten books that explain the complicated nostalgia of being a child of diaspora," 17 June 2019 Problems of displacement and effacement in the Bay Area continue to intensify. Nathan Heller, The New Yorker, "“The Last Black Man in San Francisco” and the Fear of Being Erased," 7 June 2019

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

1611, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for displacement

see displace

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Statistics for displacement

Last Updated

18 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for displacement

The first known use of displacement was in 1611

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More Definitions for displacement

displacement

noun

English Language Learners Definition of displacement

: the act of forcing people or animals to leave the area where they live
: the movement of something from its original or regular position
technical : the amount of water that is moved by an object when it is placed in water

displacement

noun
dis·​place·​ment | \ -ˈplā-smənt How to pronounce displacement (audio) \

Medical Definition of displacement

1a : the act or process of removing something from its usual or proper place or the state resulting from this : dislocation the displacement of a knee joint
2 : the quantity in which or the degree to which something is displaced
3a : the redirection of an emotion or impulse from its original object (as an idea or person) to something that is more acceptable
c : the substitution of another form of behavior for what is usual or expected especially when the usual response is nonadaptive

called also displacement activity, displacement behavior

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Comments on displacement

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