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Definition of "optimism" []

  • A tendency to expect the best possible outcome or dwell on the most hopeful aspects of a situation: "There is a touch of optimism in every worry about one's own moral cleanliness” ( Victoria Ocampo). (noun)
  • Philosophy The doctrine, asserted by Leibniz, that this world is the best of all possible worlds. (noun)
  • Philosophy The belief that the universe is improving and that good will ultimately triumph over evil. (noun)

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 "optimism" in a sentence
  • "Reagan optimism is code for status quo Republican agenda."
  • "The term optimism as thus extended would also include "meliorism", a word first used in print by Sully to designate the theory of those who hold that things are, indeed, bad, but that they can be better, and that it is in our power to increase the happiness and welfare of mankind."
  • "You may not agree with their philosophy for creating a better future for America, but the optimism is the same."