polarization

noun
po·​lar·​i·​za·​tion | \ ˌpō-lə-rə-ˈzā-shən How to pronounce polarization (audio) \

Definition of polarization

1 : the action of polarizing or state of being or becoming polarized: such as
a(1) : the action or process of affecting radiation and especially light so that the vibrations of the wave assume a definite form
(2) : the state of radiation affected by this process
b : an increase in the resistance of an electrolytic cell often caused by the deposition of gas on one or both electrodes
2a : division into two opposites
b : concentration about opposing extremes of groups or interests formerly ranged on a continuum

Examples of polarization in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Chronic skepticism and the cognitive DDoS will increase polarization, leading to a consolidation of trust in distinct sets of right and left-wing authority figures – thought oligarchs speaking to entirely separate groups. Casey Newton, The Verge, "A looming strike over Project Dragonfly is putting new pressure on Google," 30 Nov. 2018 Overall, McCaskey displayed pliability in a debate defined by polarization, even dancing around a question about President Trump injecting himself into the equation so not to incite a presidential tweet or tantrum. David Haugh, chicagotribune.com, "Bears Chairman George McCaskey balances respect and tradition on anthem issue," 7 June 2018 The sensitive lens on the mantis cam can detect changes in underwater polarization, allowing researchers for the first time to create an underwater GPS system. Jenny Staletovich, miamiherald, "Lost at sea? This camera mimics way shrimp see and might help rescuers find you | Miami Herald," 4 Apr. 2018 The end result is a platform with more emphasis on private groups and visual stories, and less on the News Feed where abusive content and polarization took root in recent years. ... Jeff Horwitz, WSJ, "Facebook Tries a New Look as Zuckerberg Proclaims a New Era," 30 Apr. 2019 Reverting to tribalism is the taproot of our social and political polarization. WSJ, "It’s Hard to See Democracy Coexisting With Tribalism," 7 Nov. 2018 Now there is hard data showing political polarization caused quite a few people to skip the pie. Lydia Denworth, Scientific American, "Thanksgiving Dinner May End Sooner If Guests Pass the Gravy across a Partisan Divide," 1 June 2018 Southern Democrats’ ideological proximity to conservative Republicans reduced polarization and facilitated bipartisanship. Ezra Klein, Vox, "The political tribalism of Andrew Sullivan," 11 Dec. 2018 But, whatever polarization one photon has, the entangled one has the opposite. Chris Lee, Ars Technica, "Entanglement allows one party to control measurement results," 16 Sep. 2018

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

1812, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

26 Jun 2019

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The first known use of polarization was in 1812

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More Definitions for polarization

polarization

noun
po·​lar·​iza·​tion
variants: also British polarisation \ ˌpō-​lə-​rə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce polarisation (audio) \

Medical Definition of polarization

: the action of polarizing or state of being or becoming polarized: as
a(1) : the action or process of affecting radiation and especially light so that the vibrations of the wave assume a definite form
(2) : the state of radiation affected by this process
b : an increase in the resistance of an electrolytic cell caused by the deposition of gas on one or both electrodes

More from Merriam-Webster on polarization

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with polarization

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about polarization

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