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Definition of "oppressive" []

  • Difficult to bear; burdensome: oppressive laws. (adjective)
  • Exercising power arbitrarily and often unjustly; tyrannical. (adjective)
  • Weighing heavily on the senses or spirit: oppressive weather. See Synonyms at burdensome. (adjective)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "oppressive" in a sentence
  • "In 1939, Manipuri women launched what was called Nupi Lan, or the women's war, against the maharaja that ruled the kingdom over what they called his oppressive policies."
  • "The feminists rejoiced because all the cash went to women, thereby deconstructing what they called the oppressive patriarchy, and the liberals rejoiced because these handouts required more bureaucrats and higher taxes."
  • "The key to keeping that form becoming unnecessarily oppressive is to put a hold on institutional punishments like this one."