Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The act or an instance of subverting.
  • n. The condition of being subverted.
  • n. Obsolete A cause of overthrow or ruin.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. the act of subverting or the condition of being subverted
  • n. a systematic attempt to overthrow a government by working from within; undermining

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of overturning, or the state of being overturned; entire overthrow; an overthrow from the foundation; utter ruin; destruction

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act of subverting or overthrowing, or the state of being overthrown; entire overthrow; utter ruin; destruction.
  • n. The cause of overthrow or destruction.
  • n. Synonyms Overturning, downfall, demolition. See subvert.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. destroying someone's (or some group's) honesty or loyalty; undermining moral integrity
  • n. the act of subverting; as overthrowing or destroying a legally constituted government

Etymologies

Middle English subversioun, from Old French subversion, from Late Latin subversiō, subversiōn-, from Latin subversus, past participle of subvertere, to subvert; see subvert.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French subversion. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Early Wednesday, as part of the strike, the lawyers presented a petition to the High Court in Kampala expressing their concern about what they called the subversion of the rule of law.

    Uganda Lawyers on Three-Day Strike

  • The result of this subversion is a surprisingly mature and complex look at gender politics — revealing the power of comics and science fiction to address feminist issues and to reach a younger, predominantly male audience with a enlightening message.

    It’s a Woman’s World | PopPolitics.com

  • Department and the White House always say that there are three obstacles to improving relations between Cuban and the United States, and they are your allegiance to the Soviet Union, what they call subversion in this hemisphere, and the large number of your troops in Africa.

    THE MACNEIL/LEHRER NEWSHOUR INTERVIEW W/CASTRO

  • It's the report that found assurance of future acts of Japanese-American subversion from the "disturbing and confirming" fact that none had yet been taken.

    Is That Legal?: Japanese American internment Archives

  • MZS again: "Gleefully sensationalistic and paced like an adults-only shoot-'em-up video game, [The Hills Have Eyes 2 is] ultimately less interested in subversion and subtext than in making viewers squirm, shriek and throw up into their popcorn bags."

    GreenCine Daily: Weekend shorts.

  • But as the Turkish society has been thoroughly Kemalized by the Kemalofascist military, bureaucracy, and judiciary for almost a century, and as it has also been thoroughly Islamized by the their Muslim leaders, with their strong economic base; there is no danger of any form of subversion from the Turkish people against the status quo or any wish for real democracy.

    Wake up Kurdistan!

  • Honestly, libertarians are dangerous anarchists and sociopaths, and any organization like this assisting in subversion of US and international law to create war should be arrested.

    Think Progress » Bush Meets Privately With Think Tank Promoting Military Strike On Iran

  • The Appendix can, therefore, be seen to be fore grounded against the genre of Appendices and to subvert readerly preconceptions as to what an Appendix should do; this subversion is suggested, moreover, by the very inclusion of an Appendix in a novel, since appendices are ordinarily associated with academic or technical works.

    Hope Begins in the Dark: Re-reading Nineteen Eighty-Four

  • To conclude then: the discourse of subversion is a site of political contention, but that discourse also constrains and determines the very nature of the contention.

    The Discourse of Treason, Sedition, and Blasphemy in British Political Trials, 1794-1820

  • The transition to an anti-democratic discourse of subversion is most evident in the changes in the legal status of blasphemy.

    The Discourse of Treason, Sedition, and Blasphemy in British Political Trials, 1794-1820

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