neo·​lib·​er·​al | \ ˌnē-ō-ˈli-b(ə-)rəl How to pronounce neoliberal (audio) \

Definition of neoliberal

: a liberal who de-emphasizes traditional liberal doctrines in order to seek progress by more pragmatic methods

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Other Words from neoliberal

neoliberal adjective
neoliberalism \ ˌnē-​ō-​ˈli-​b(ə-​)rə-​ˌli-​zəm How to pronounce neoliberalism (audio) \ noun

Examples of neoliberal in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web One of the reasons the world is in such a mess is that neoliberals became carried away with their own ideology. The Economist, "The study of history is in decline in Britain," 18 July 2019 Intellectual advocates of the job guarantee believe their proposal serves a larger purpose of restoring the Democratic Party to its prelapsarian state of working-class innocence, before neoliberals took control. Jonathan Chait, Daily Intelligencer, "Democrats Are Rushing Into a Job Guarantee. It Could Be a Huge Mistake.," 25 Apr. 2018 But this conflates pro-government liberals such as President Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton with pro-market neoliberals such as House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) and Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.). Walter Hatch, Washington Post, "Cornel West accused Ta-Nehisi Coates of being a neoliberal. Does neoliberal still mean anything?," 23 Jan. 2018 Neoliberals should be thinking about how to use law and regulation to halt the menace of industrial concentration. Noah Smith, The Denver Post, "Defending neoliberalism from the extremes of left and right," 23 May 2017 Homophobes and gun freaks aren’t all that eager to have their presumptions questioned on national TV, and neither are radical feminists, Black Panthers and neoliberals — even by someone who’s genuine, sincere and pure. The Washington Post, The Denver Post, "Ron Currie doesn’t do metaphors in One Eyed Man, but he’s fine with gimmicks," 2 Mar. 2017 In Europe, neoliberals are free-market capitalists who impose rigid and — judging by the sluggish European economy — unsuccessful austerity measures on debtor nations. Jonathan Alter, New York Times, "‘The Populist Explosion’ Dissects the History of the Anti-Elite Worldview," 7 Oct. 2016 Using the word almost interchangeably is confusing, not to mention unfair to American neoliberals, who may have gone overboard on financial deregulation in the 1990s but have staunchly opposed Republican austerity measures. Jonathan Alter, New York Times, "‘The Populist Explosion’ Dissects the History of the Anti-Elite Worldview," 7 Oct. 2016

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

1921, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for neoliberal

neo- + liberal entry 2

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The first known use of neoliberal was in 1921

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Cite this Entry

“Neoliberal.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 14 December 2019.

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