voyeurism

noun voy·eur·ism \ vwä-ˈyər-ˌi-zəm , vȯi-ˈər- \
Updated on: 17 May 2018

Definition of voyeurism

: the desires or behavior of a voyeur: such as
a : the practice of obtaining sexual gratification from observing others
  • Psychiatrists generally divide paraphilias into two groups: those focused on objects, like a foot fetish, and those focused on behaviors, like exhibitionism, voyeurism or frottage
  • —Benedict Carey
  • Ward, if he was guilty of anything at all, was guilty of observation. Looking, or (if you will) leering and ogling are not normally considered indictable offenses in British courts of law, but they do shade over into voyeurism
  • —Paul Thomas
b : the practice of taking pleasure in observing something private, sordid, or scandalous
  • Now there's a volume for those who are … bored by the salacious voyeurism of tell-alls.
  • —Steven M. Zeitchik
  • Voyeurism allows us to experience all the excitement of disaster, catastrophe, and pain, to witness the most horrible human events, without any danger of feeling real pain.
  • —Gerald Mast
  • But the voice of the diarist … will always exert a fascination close to voyeurism.
  • —Rosellen Brown

Recent Examples of voyeurism from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'voyeurism.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of voyeurism

1913

in the meaning defined above

See Words from the same year
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Medical Dictionary

voyeurism

noun voy·eur·ism \ -ˌiz-əm \

medical Definition of voyeurism

: the tendencies or behavior of a voyeur

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