double standard


: a set of principles that applies differently and usually more rigorously to one group of people or circumstances than to another
especially : a code of morals that applies more severe standards of sexual behavior to women than to men

Example Sentences

She argued that society applies a double standard in dealing with women who commit adultery.
Recent Examples on the Web Featuring Serena Williams as a guest, the friends discussed the double standard society sets for women who chase their dreams, and Meghan revealed that a fire broke out in son Archie's nursery during the Sussex family's royal tour of Africa in 2019. Shafiq Najib, Peoplemag, 11 Sep. 2022 Reporters even questioned the double standard Biden holds for himself to his senior economic adviser Jared Bernstein on Monday. Lindsay Kornick, Fox News, 22 July 2022 In a post-game press conference Wednesday night, the 37-year-old NBA superstar, who has been increasingly vocal in recent years regarding racial inequity, spoke out about a seeming double standard regarding two recent sports-world controversies. Anna Lazarus Caplan, Peoplemag, 1 Dec. 2022 In a daze 40 Biblical creation with a double standard? Natan Last, The New Yorker, 20 Sep. 2022 The way in which Berger and Mrs. Clinton were treated is highly relevant in determining whether Mr. Trump is being subjected to a double standard of justice. Alan M. Dershowitz, WSJ, 14 Aug. 2022 There’s an obvious, problematic double standard at play here. Katie Donbavand, Glamour, 24 Dec. 2022 There seems to be an environmental double standard on the political left. James Freeman, WSJ, 20 Dec. 2022 In other words, women faced an impossible double standard: unable to control their image on social media but punished severely for it. Gina Neff, WIRED, 19 Dec. 2022 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1872, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of double standard was in 1872

Dictionary Entries Near double standard

Cite this Entry

“Double standard.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition

double standard

: a set of standards that applies differently and usually more harshly to one group of people or circumstances than to another

More from Merriam-Webster on double standard

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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