Definition of rationalize
- rationalize a myth
- rationalized his dislike of his brother
- rationalize the problem
- rationalize a denominator
She tried to rationalize her grandson's strange behavior by blaming it on the boy's father.
He couldn't rationalize buying such an expensive car.
She knows she shouldn't have done it—she's just trying to rationalize.
Management is thinking of ways to rationalize our system of production.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rationalize.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
: to think about or describe something (such as bad behavior) in a way that explains it and makes it seem proper, more attractive, etc.
: to find ways to make (something, such as an industry, a company, etc.) waste less time, effort, and money
What made you want to look up rationalize? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).
Words Used by Nabokov Quiz
Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?TAKE THE QUIZ
Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.TAKE THE QUIZ