inferiority complex

noun

Definition of inferiority complex

1 : an acute sense of personal inferiority often resulting either in timidity or through overcompensation in exaggerated aggressiveness
2 : a collective sense of cultural, regional, or national inferiority

Examples of inferiority complex in a Sentence

His shyness is the result of an inferiority complex.
Recent Examples on the Web In Ukrainka’s play, Oksana’s husband is servile, obligingly performing Ukrainian songs and dances for the czar’s entertainment, while the artist in Zabuzhko’s novel is wracked by an inferiority complex familiar to citizens of dominated nations. Uilleam Blacker, The Atlantic, 10 Mar. 2022 One downside is that this shift, along with China’s explosive economic development, has flipped an inferiority complex into triumphalism. Hugo Restall, WSJ, 1 Mar. 2022 Softball has struggled with an inferiority complex for years. Lori Riley, courant.com, 15 Nov. 2021 For 88 years, Spain didn’t beat Italy in a competitive match and an inferiority complex naturally grew. Tim Bielik, cleveland, 6 July 2021 Like all egomaniacs, his insufferable superiority complex comes entangled with a devastating inferiority complex; ambition and supremacy are matched by self-loathing and anger. Bilge Ebiri, Vulture, 23 Aug. 2021 For 88 years, Spain didn’t beat Italy in a competitive match and an inferiority complex naturally grew. Tim Bielik, cleveland, 6 July 2021 Dottie walks her home and tries to console her, but Kit is clearly riding an inferiority complex wave that cannot be stopped. Emma Specter, Vogue, 6 Aug. 2021 For 88 years, Spain didn’t beat Italy in a competitive match and an inferiority complex naturally grew. Tim Bielik, cleveland, 6 July 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of inferiority complex

1922, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for inferiority complex

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The first known use of inferiority complex was in 1922

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Dictionary Entries Near inferiority complex

inferior good

inferiority complex

inferior laryngeal

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Cite this Entry

“Inferiority complex.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/inferiority%20complex. Accessed 3 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for inferiority complex

inferiority complex

noun

Medical Definition of inferiority complex

: an acute sense of personal inferiority resulting either in timidity or through overcompensation in exaggerated aggressiveness

More from Merriam-Webster on inferiority complex

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about inferiority complex

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