in·​sen·​si·​tive | \ (ˌ)in-ˈsen(t)-s(ə-)tiv How to pronounce insensitive (audio) \

Definition of insensitive

1a : lacking feeling or tact so insensitive as to laugh at someone in pain
b : not responsive or susceptible insensitive to the demands of the public
2 : not physically or chemically sensitive

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from insensitive

insensitively adverb
insensitiveness noun
insensitivity \ (ˌ)in-​ˌsen(t)-​sə-​ˈti-​və-​tē How to pronounce insensitive (audio) \ noun

Examples of insensitive in a Sentence

He's just a rude, insensitive jerk. It was insensitive of her to say that.
Recent Examples on the Web Land retired after apologizing for plagiarizing and for making racially insensitive comments about the death of Trayvon Martin. The Salt Lake Tribune, 19 May 2021 He is also accused of making insensitive comments about George Floyd, a Black man who was killed by former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. Minyvonne Burke, NBC News, 30 Apr. 2021 The move is part of the company’s effort to transform its internal culture after racially insensitive comments from its eponymous founder lost the agency a number of high-profile clients last year. Dom Difurio, Dallas News, 28 Apr. 2021 At the same time, his sometimes racially insensitive comments have been downplayed as mere gaffes or as examples of his charming willingness to allow political incorrectness to break the ice. Washington Post, 17 Apr. 2021 Still, Ellen’s disability sometimes leads to unwanted attention and insensitive comments. Alaina Leary, Good Housekeeping, 16 Apr. 2021 Candidate Saba Haider, who spoke at a rally organized by Obed-Horton in downtown Naperville March 21, said insensitive comments on a Facebook post about her speech are proof these topics must be addressed in schools. Rafael Guerrero,, 1 Apr. 2021 Growing up, she was tormented by classmates and peers whose insensitive comments and continuous harassment wreaked havoc on her self-esteem. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, 23 Mar. 2021 Just three days after Creighton men's basketball coach Greg McDermott was reinstated following a suspension for racially insensitive comments made after a recent loss, the program lost one of its top recruits. Lorenzo Reyes, USA TODAY, 12 Mar. 2021

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

1834, in the meaning defined at sense 1b

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about insensitive

Time Traveler for insensitive

Time Traveler

The first known use of insensitive was in 1834

See more words from the same year

Statistics for insensitive

Last Updated

3 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Insensitive.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Jun. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for insensitive



English Language Learners Definition of insensitive

: showing that you do not know or care about the feelings of other people
: not responding to or caring about problems, changes, or needs
: not greatly affected by something


in·​sen·​si·​tive | \ in-ˈsen-sə-tiv How to pronounce insensitive (audio) \

Kids Definition of insensitive

1 : lacking feeling : not sensitive He's insensitive to pain.
2 : not caring or showing concern about the problems or feelings of others an insensitive remark

Other Words from insensitive

insensitively adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on insensitive

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for insensitive

Nglish: Translation of insensitive for Spanish Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Name that Thing: Dog Breeds

True or False

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


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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