ex·​hi·​bi·​tion·​ism | \ ˌek-sə-ˈbi-shə-ˌni-zəm How to pronounce exhibitionism (audio) \

Definition of exhibitionism

1a : a perversion in which sexual gratification is obtained from the indecent exposure of one's genitals (as to a stranger)
b : an act of such exposure
2 : the act or practice of behaving so as to attract attention to oneself

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from exhibitionism

exhibitionist \ ˌek-​sə-​ˈbish-​nist How to pronounce exhibitionist (audio) , -​ˈbi-​shə-​ \ noun or adjective
exhibitionistic \ ˌek-​sə-​ˌbi-​shə-​ˈni-​stik How to pronounce exhibitionistic (audio) \ adjective
exhibitionistically \ ˌek-​sə-​ˌbi-​shə-​ˈni-​sti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce exhibitionistically (audio) \ adverb

Examples of exhibitionism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

This cycle of mimetic exhibitionism holds even for metaphysical things like moral values, which in a world colonized by capitalism have become a wearable commodity. Susan Crawford, WIRED, "Mark Zuckerberg Plays the Scapegoat for Our Facebook Sins," 17 Apr. 2018 With this kind of exhibitionism, de Waart had nothing to do. Marcus Overton, sandiegouniontribune.com, "A master at work: Edo de Waart makes Mahlerian magic with San Diego Symphony," 10 Mar. 2018 Instead of the exhibitionism of peers like Tracey Emin or Damien Hirst, Mr. Hume practices self-restraint, modestly producing near-abstractions that opaquely deflect straightforward narratives or easy interpretations. Barbara Pollack, New York Times, "Gary Hume Loves His Mother. His Art Is a Valentine to Her.," 27 Oct. 2017 By all means, go to mother! and enjoy its roller-coaster-of-weird exhibitionism. Laura Beck, Cosmopolitan, "13 Times Critics Couldn't Believe How Weird JLaw's New Movie Mother! Is," 12 Sep. 2017 As the pendulum swings toward maximalism, a look characterized by a profusion of pattern and design exhibitionism, the candid expressiveness of nudes seems fresh. Julie Lasky, WSJ, "Hanging Nude Paintings in Your Home: So Out, They’re In," 27 July 2017 His Lola perfectly epitomized the classic drag queen’s panache for exhibitionism and camp. Tirdad Derakhshani, Philly.com, "Jos N. Banks kills it as drag queen Lola in 'Kinky Boots' at Academy of Music," 4 Oct. 2017 Officials have also noted that voyeurism and exhibitionism will not be tolerated. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Parisian Nudists Get Designated Area to Frolic “au Naturel”," 31 Aug. 2017 Novogratz conveys Spike’s proclivity for exhibitionism and incessant yet shallow sunniness, and Keri Hellmuth aptly portrays Sonia and Vanya’s sometimes precognitive cleaning woman, aptly named Cassandra, as a comically eccentric misfit. Orange County Register, "Durang channels Chekhov with ‘Vanya and Sonia’ in Fullerton," 17 Jan. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of exhibitionism

1891, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about exhibitionism

Statistics for exhibitionism

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for exhibitionism

The first known use of exhibitionism was in 1891

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for exhibitionism



English Language Learners Definition of exhibitionism

disapproving : behavior that is meant to attract attention to yourself


ex·​hi·​bi·​tion·​ism | \ ˌek-sə-ˈbish-ə-niz-əm How to pronounce exhibitionism (audio) \

Medical Definition of exhibitionism

1a : a perversion marked by a tendency to indecent exposure
b : an act of such exposure
2 : the act or practice of behaving so as to attract attention to oneself

More from Merriam-Webster on exhibitionism

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with exhibitionism

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about exhibitionism

Comments on exhibitionism

What made you want to look up exhibitionism? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


showing courage and determination

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!