repression

noun
re·​pres·​sion | \ ri-ˈpre-shən How to pronounce repression (audio) \

Definition of repression

1a : the action or process of repressing : the state of being repressed repression of unpopular opinions
b : an instance of repressing racial repressions
2a : a mental process by which distressing thoughts, memories, or impulses that may give rise to anxiety are excluded from consciousness and left to operate in the unconscious
b : an item so excluded

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Other Words from repression

repressionist \ ri-​ˈpre-​sh(ə-​)nist How to pronounce repressionist (audio) \ adjective

Examples of repression in a Sentence

the state's repression of its citizens They survived 60 years of political repression.

Recent Examples on the Web

Pro-democracy activists and opposition parties say nine months is not enough time to muster resources, prepare voter rolls and strengthen civilian institutions after three decades of repression. Aryn Baker, Time, "Sudan’s Military Calls for Election After Violent Crackdown on Protesters," 6 June 2019 The theocratic political system put in place after the revolution has persisted since then, but Iran’s leaders have had to contend with the changing cultural norms of Iranian society with varying degrees of repression. Sune Engel Rasmussen, WSJ, "Iran Vows to Continue Military Expansion Despite U.S. Threats," 11 Feb. 2019 What Chinese internet users rarely talk about is Putin's legacy of repression. Jonathan Kaiman, latimes.com, "Presidents for life? A conversation about Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin," 2 Mar. 2018 Newsom’s Monday order said the increase in Central American migrants crossing the border is the result of a desire to escape violence and repression fueled in part by the activities of transnational crime organizations. Kathleen Ronayne, The Seattle Times, "California governor rebukes Trump in border troop withdrawal," 12 Feb. 2019 But the system of repression in the province goes far beyond anything that would be justified by such proclivities and affiliations. The Economist, "China has turned Xinjiang into a police state like no other," 31 May 2018 The discussion Friday was arranged by the Committee to Protect Journalists, which also highlighted the repression and abuse of reporters in countries including Bangladesh, Egypt and Kyrgyzstan. Fox News, "Amal Clooney: Pardon Reuters reporters jailed in Myanmar," 28 Sep. 2018 And Mr Ortega is aping the repression of the Somozas. The Economist, "Daniel Ortega is causing a bloodbath in Nicaragua," 12 July 2018 Both are poster boys for repression and are personae non gratae among the region’s democracies. Mary Anastasia O’grady, WSJ, "Mexico’s Democracy Test," 25 Nov. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for repression

Last Updated

10 Jun 2019

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The first known use of repression was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for repression

repression

noun

English Language Learners Definition of repression

: the act of using force to control someone or something
: the state of being controlled by force
: the act of not allowing a memory, feeling, or desire to be expressed

repression

noun
re·​pres·​sion | \ ri-ˈpresh-ən How to pronounce repression (audio) \

Medical Definition of repression

1 : the action or process of repressing gene repression
2a : a process by which unacceptable desires or impulses are excluded from consciousness and left to operate in the unconscious — compare suppression sense c
b : an item so excluded

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