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Definition of "primitivism" [primitivism]

  • The condition or quality of being primitive. (noun)
  • The style characteristic of a primitive artist. (noun)
  • A belief that it is best to live simply and in a natural environment. (noun)
  • A belief that the acquisitions of civilization are evil or that the earliest period of human history was the best. (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 "primitivism" in a sentence
  • "One of the strong currents found within the avant-garde art movement was that of a certain fascination with "primitivism", which looked to non-European sources for inspiration and which was significantly rooted in a rejection of more traditional Western forms of art."
  • "For decades, we have not wanted to know, because it sounded too much like the old colonialist claims of African "primitivism", used as an excuse by our ancestors to pillage the continent's resources."
  • "It's called 'primitivism' when the ancient source comes from the apostolic age."