un·​adapt·​able ˌən-ə-ˈdap-tə-bəl How to pronounce unadaptable (audio)
: not adaptable: such as
: not capable of adjusting to new conditions or situations
people who are unadaptable to change
: not capable of being easily modified to suit other conditions, needs, or uses
An economy that is … unadaptable is not efficient.Jane Jacobs
an unadaptable computer system
unadaptability noun

Examples of unadaptable in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The novel has been adapted by Noah Baumbach into a feature film starring Adam Driver and Greta Gerwig, despite a reputation for being unadaptable because of its density of detail and its fractured, occasionally absurdist plot. Jordan Kisner, The Atlantic, 9 Dec. 2022 For years, Frank Herbert’s sweeping 1965 sci-fi novel — set in the distant future on a desert planet where powerful clans fight for control over the most precious substance in the universe — was considered all but unadaptable. Los Angeles Times, 1 Jan. 2023 It must be said that DeLillo’s novel has long been considered unadaptable for precisely this reason of tone. K. Austin Collins, Rolling Stone, 30 Dec. 2022 The latter sentiment is the key to understanding both the assets and challenges of making a TV series out of a comic book long held as one of the medium’s greatest, but also one of its most unadaptable. Alan Sepinwall, Rolling Stone, 5 Aug. 2022 So maybe its backers simply need to keep reminding people how Frank Herbert’s novel was considered unadaptable ... and Jon Spaihts, Eric Roth and Villeneuve did it. Los Angeles Times, 9 Mar. 2022 That film’s failure gave the book a reputation for being unadaptable: too long, unwieldy, and dense with lore to work on a blockbuster scale. David Sims, The Atlantic, 27 Oct. 2021 Who better than his fellow filmmakers to understand the difficulties involved in bringing Frank Herbert’s nigh-unadaptable novel to the screen? Nate Jones, Vulture, 22 Oct. 2021 Apple TV+, striving to make its mark with a modest number of high quality series, opted to embark on the impossible and adapt the unadaptable. Jeff Ewing, Forbes, 24 Sep. 2021 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'unadaptable.' 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

1882, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of unadaptable was in 1882

Dictionary Entries Near unadaptable

Cite this Entry

“Unadaptable.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unadaptable. Accessed 2 Oct. 2023.

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