Definition of emotive in English:

emotive

adjective

  • 1Arousing or able to arouse intense feeling:

    ‘animal experimentation is an emotive subject’
    ‘the issue has proved highly emotive’
    • ‘These issues involve difficult and emotive ethical problems.’
    • ‘I believe the emotive issues will prove most important in the long run.’
    • ‘I think I would be too emotional; I couldn't make an objective decision on such an emotive subject.’
    • ‘Film is an emotive medium, uniquely able to manipulate through lighting and music as well as words.’
    • ‘Certain subjects are taboo, or too emotive to be examined with objectivity.’
    • ‘Urgent, thorough debate is needed on this very emotive subject, but the right people must be involved in that debate.’
    • ‘The question I keep asking myself is why has fox hunting become such an intensely emotive issue in this country?’
    • ‘The Great Famine affected all aspects of Irish life and remains one of the most emotive issues in modern Irish historiography.’
    • ‘I knew how emotive and personal a subject it was and, therefore, my goal has been to question not to judge.’
    • ‘All I am saying to you is that all the rather emotive matters you are talking about can be dealt with in these other grounds.’
    • ‘The debate ranged over many emotive ethical issues and in doing so lost sight of what was of benefit to the area as required by the statute.’
    • ‘Slavery is an emotive subject but has to be addressed head on.’
    • ‘It is a problematic and emotive issue as it relates to the most vulnerable and marginalised group in any society: children.’
    • ‘Money of course is a highly emotive subject, and often people allow their emotions to cloud their better judgement.’
    • ‘It is also, I fancy, a far too emotive subject for me to handle in great depth.’
    • ‘The presence of women in the armed services is an emotive subject.’
    • ‘When a subject becomes as emotive as this one, then people will believe what they want to believe.’
    • ‘This emotive subject was close to the hearts of many councils and generated a lot of comment.’
    • ‘The media's exploitation of emotive issues to boost circulation and to win rating battles is par for the course.’
    • ‘It is easy to see why the issue is a particularly emotive one.’
    inflammatory, controversial, contentious, emotional
    sensitive, delicate, difficult, problematic, touchy, awkward
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Expressing a person's feelings rather than being neutrally descriptive:
      ‘the comparisons are emotive rather than analytic’
      • ‘Though her subject matter is emotional, her voice remains neither emotive nor nostalgic.’
      • ‘Is it not too late to have a rather more sceptical and much less emotive debate about global poverty?’
      • ‘In fact, words are often chosen as much for their emotive as their cognitive force.’
      • ‘Tabloid newspapers also favour emotive words over objective descriptions of events.’
      • ‘I guess my cynical nature is rearing its head here, because it looks to me like your position is emotive rather than reasoned.’
      • ‘Journalists answer that terrorism is an emotive term that compromises their objectivity.’
      • ‘When it was suggested that his policy was a system of insurance, he at first accepted the term, but quickly backed away to a less emotive description.’
      • ‘I was equally disappointed to read the rather silly and emotive language used by the two councillors quoted.’
      • ‘Sorry if I am a bit emotive but I found the article really offensive.’
      • ‘Once I have assurances from both authorities I will look at the town as a whole and take a holistic view of the problem, rather than an emotive one.’
      • ‘Susan has a whimsical, descriptive and deeply emotive writing style.’
      • ‘The refusal to acknowledge emotive arguments is annoying and very much in the vein of English Language Positivism.’
      • ‘We tend to become either pedantically descriptive or abstractly emotive, or both.’
      • ‘Note how the arguments for a monarchy are couched in emotive rather than rational terms.’
      • ‘I applaud the council for considering the facts rather than being swayed by emotive and at times inaccurate information.’
      • ‘At the end of the day, it is entirely up to you whether you buy or rent your home, and this is often an emotive rather than rational decision.’
      • ‘However, the minister called for a less emotive and better informed debate on incineration and waste management.’
      • ‘The result is also meaningless as an emotive response to a complex problem.’

Usage

The words emotive and emotional share similarities but are not simply interchangeable. Emotive is used to mean ‘arousing intense feeling’, while emotional tends to mean ‘characterized by intense feeling’. Thus an emotive issue is one which is likely to arouse people's passions, while an emotional response is one which is itself full of passion. In sentences such as we took our emotive farewells the word emotive has been used in a context where emotional would be more appropriate

Origin

Mid 18th century: from Latin emot- moved, from the verb emovere (see emotion).

Pronunciation

emotive

/ɪˈməʊtɪv/