pa·​thol·​o·​gize | \ pə-ˈthä-lə-ˌjīz How to pronounce pathologize (audio) \
pathologized; pathologizing

Definition of pathologize

transitive verb

: to view or characterize as medically or psychologically abnormal natural hormonal shifts have been pathologized— Joyce C. Mills

Examples of pathologize in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web As an executive and leadership coach, my goal is to go deeper with my clients and reveal what's under the surface—not to do personal archeology but just to reveal a little emotional vulnerability and to normalize, not pathologize. Patrick Williams, Forbes, 17 Mar. 2021 This is a prominent pattern in origin stories and conspiracy theories of diseases, which often pathologize exotic places and allege foreign malfeasance to make a new threat seem more comprehensible and controllable. Sabrina Sholts, Smithsonian Magazine, 5 Mar. 2021 The answer to the question of whether America’s Great Society would center racial and economic justice or further criminalize and pathologize black communities came in 1968 with the Safe Streets Crime Bill. National Geographic, 12 June 2020 The film, in which each of Simmons’s accusers affirms her prior affection for the mogul and love of black men in general, doesn’t set out to pathologize an entire demographic. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, 1 June 2020 Through Marianne, the show depicts the complexity of a young woman’s sexuality with empathy, even avoiding some of the book’s tendency to pathologize her desires. Eleanor Stanford, New York Times, 17 Apr. 2020 To pathologize your own creative frustration feels to me like an act of ego. Rumaan Alam, The New Republic, 5 Dec. 2019 Fat discrimination is unacceptable and so is the scientifically debunked diet industry that continues to ridicule, pathologize, and obsess about fat people. Samhita Mukhopadhyay, Teen Vogue, 29 Aug. 2019 The opportunity to pathologize certain behaviors is appealing. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, 28 June 2018

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

1649, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pathologize

pathology + -ize

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Time Traveler for pathologize

Time Traveler

The first known use of pathologize was in 1649

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Statistics for pathologize

Cite this Entry

“Pathologize.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for pathologize


transitive verb
variants: or chiefly British pathologise \ -​ˌjīz \
pathologized or chiefly British pathologised; pathologizing or chiefly British pathologising

Medical Definition of pathologize

: to view or characterize as medically or psychologically abnormal natural hormonal shifts have been pathologized— Joyce C. Mills pathologizing childhood behavior— Ruth Shalit

Other Words from pathologize

pathologization or chiefly British pathologisation \ pə-​ˌthäl-​ə-​jə-​ˈzā-​shən \ noun


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