Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Exercising power arbitrarily and often unjustly; tyrannical.
  • adjective Difficult to cope with; causing hardship or depressed spirits: synonym: burdensome.
  • adjective Hot and humid; sweltering.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Unreasonably burdensome; unjustly severe: as, oppressive taxes; oppressive exactions of service.
  • Given or inclined to oppression; tyrannical: as, an oppressive government.
  • Heavy; overpowering; overwhelming; burdensome; causing discomfort or uneasiness: as, oppressive grief or woe.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Unreasonably burdensome; unjustly severe, rigorous, or harsh
  • adjective Using oppression; tyrannical.
  • adjective Heavy; overpowering; hard to be borne; creating a sense of heavy burden.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective Burdensome or difficult to bear.
  • adjective Tyrannical or exercising unjust power.
  • adjective Weighing heavily on the spirit; intense, or overwhelming

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

  • adjective weighing heavily on the senses or spirit
  • adjective marked by unjust severity or arbitrary behavior

Etymologies

Sorry, no etymologies found.

Examples

  • 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.

    NYT > Home Page

  • 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.

    ChronWatch - Articles

  • 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.

    ChronWatch - Articles

  • The key to keeping that form becoming unnecessarily oppressive is to put a hold on institutional punishments like this one.

    Your Right Hand Thief

  • Link via Neha, who also says this: I think it's crucial to remember that this just isn't about living in oppressive regimes.

    Archive 2006-01-01

  • What some perceive as oppressive is perceived as liberating for many second-generation American Muslim women, as they blend their parents 'religion with their place in the "new country" and American society.

    Science Press Releases

  • Proxies like Privoxy, FoxyProxy, Tor and Vidalia can be used by anybody, but most notably by web browsers in oppressive countries to disguise their identity and location.

    Speaking of Paranoid: Google is blocking privacy proxies

  • What's further oppressive is in denying that, as things stand currently, whether we like it or not, the people who are generally tasked with the charge of these marginally controllable human beings are largely female.

    Dru Blood - I believe in the inherent goodness of all beings: October 2005 Archives

  • What's further oppressive is in denying that, as things stand currently, whether we like it or not, the people who are generally tasked with the charge of these marginally controllable human beings are largely female.

    Dru Blood - I believe in the inherent goodness of all beings: Comparitive Oppression

  • After an exhausting drill in oppressive heat, Mia Hamm jogged off the field.

    USATODAY.com - Rejuvenated Hamm still a reluctant star

Comments

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  • "The silence is so oppressive"

    -Tygra, "SNARF TAKES UP THE CHALLENGE"

    March 12, 2008