self-jus·​ti·​fi·​ca·​tion ˌself-ˌjə-stə-fə-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce self-justification (audio)
: the act or an instance of making excuses for oneself

Examples of self-justification in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This connects to how the Puberty Alarm cartoon substitutes for the egotism some people never outgrow — the self-justification featured in groomer films such as Eighth Grade and Love, Simon and Emerald Fennell’s Saltburn. Armond White, National Review, 14 June 2024 The major predicament for contemporary Jews of all varieties, in his view, is not that the struggle for meaning and self-justification is too burdensome or intractable. Gideon Lewis-Kraus, The New Yorker, 15 Feb. 2024 Specific behaviors breed byzantine worldviews that emerge out of self-justification. Jordan Castro, Harper's Magazine, 9 Jan. 2024 This is in line with findings from a 2017 study led by psychologist and researcher Noelle Nelson that focusing on your emotions, rather than thinking about the failure (which tends to generate self-justification), helps people learn and improve. TIME, 2 Jan. 2024 But perhaps this is merely so much self-justification. Meghan O’Gieblyn, Harper's Magazine, 8 Dec. 2021 And Taylor is hilarious as a very stoned listener to Harvey’s self-justifications. Celia Wren, Washington Post, 16 Feb. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'self-justification.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1775, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of self-justification was circa 1775

Dictionary Entries Near self-justification

Cite this Entry

“Self-justification.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Jul. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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