uni·​po·​lar | \ ˌyü-ni-ˈpō-lər How to pronounce unipolar (audio) \

Definition of unipolar

1 : having or oriented in respect to a single pole: such as
a : having or involving the use of a single magnetic or electrical pole
b : based on or controlled by a single factor or view China mistrusts a unipolar, U.S.-dominated world.— Thomas A. Stewart
2 psychology : being, characteristic of, or affected by unipolar depression unipolar depressive episodes unipolar patients

Examples of unipolar in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The unipolar world of American leadership that came before, where crises were dealt with, was hardly a model of good governance, calm, and strategic thinking. Tom Mctague, The Atlantic, 2 Nov. 2021 The end of the unipolar moment was hastened by these wars, and by much else. Michael Krepon, Forbes, 30 Aug. 2021 But it's been especially so since 1989, when the collapse of our superpower rival inspired providential reveries of a unipolar world led, largely unimpeded, by the U.S. and its allies. Damon Linker, TheWeek, 9 Dec. 2020 The book, published in 1987, came out just before the fall of the Soviet Union and America’s unipolar moment of glory. Tom Mctague, The Atlantic, 20 Oct. 2020 But this does not mean anyone wants to return to a unipolar world. Parag Khanna, Quartz, 16 Dec. 2019 The countries in Asia have no desire to be dominated in a unipolar world by either China or us. CBS News, 27 Nov. 2019 Scholarship frequently examines how rising powers like China challenge the geopolitics of a unipolar world dominated by the United States. Thomas Gift, Twin Cities, 5 Sep. 2019 Clinton’s views of America’s relations with Russia date back to the unipolar triumphalism of the 1990s and found clear expression during her time as secretary of state. Adam Tooze, The New York Review of Books, 6 June 2019

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

1806, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of unipolar was in 1806

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unipolar depression

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Last Updated

15 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Unipolar.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unipolar. Accessed 28 Nov. 2021.

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More Definitions for unipolar


uni·​po·​lar | \ ˌyü-ni-ˈpō-lər How to pronounce unipolar (audio) \

Medical Definition of unipolar

1 : involving or being an electrode or lead attached to the surface of a bodily site (as the chest) for recording the difference in electrical potential between the site and that of another electrode or lead having zero potential
2 of a neuron : having but one process
3 : being, characteristic of, or affected by unipolar depression unipolar depressive episodes unipolar patients — compare bipolar


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