Definition of insensitivity in English:



mass noun
  • 1Lack of concern for others' feelings.

    ‘his comments demonstrate gross insensitivity’
    ‘Huck, despite his occasional insensitivity to Jim, is not a cruel boy’
    count noun ‘cultural insensitivities’
    • ‘A media firestorm ensued, with critics accusing the newspaper of sensationalism, poor journalistic judgment, and insensitivity to the victim's family.’
    • ‘We were the victims, and others acted with outrageous insensitivity to us.’
    • ‘Their insensitivity is matched only by their overriding self-belief.’
    • ‘Our challenge is to be cautious not to take on a tone of self-righteousness and insensitivity to those whose policies we critique.’
    • ‘The officers have shown insensitivity towards the prisoners, who all share a common faith.’
    • ‘This player could not get away with such insensitivity, nor should his team.’
    • ‘Euro-American stereotypes about native people arise from prejudice and insensitivity.’
    • ‘The racial offensiveness and insensitivity of his remarks and actions must be acknowledged, criticized, and vigorously resisted.’
    • ‘This larger emptiness went hand in hand with the insensitivities endured by the poor and working class residents who were removed from neighborhood after neighborhood.’
    • ‘He never ceased to surprise her with his insensitivity.’
  • 2Lack of response to a physical sensation, chemical, etc.

    ‘signs of malnutrition include insensitivity to pain’
    ‘a major characteristic of type 2 diabetes is insulin insensitivity’
    • ‘The degree of insensitivity to the two stereoisomers is different from that in wild type.’
    • ‘These strains provided essential controls demonstrating the reproducibility of the quantitative assay and its insensitivity to general growth defects.’
    • ‘This single amino acid substitution has already been shown to confer such insensitivity in the monarch butterfly.’
    • ‘This prompted us to test whether any of these proteins could rescue the mutant insensitivities to pheromone.’
    • ‘We trace the evolution of this particular insensitivity in this group of beetles by analyzing a DNA sequence.’
    • ‘If such insensitivity was an inevitable property of multienzyme systems, then dominance in metabolism did not require an evolutionary explanation.’
    • ‘Because we are monitoring germination rates rather than a static time point, we could get a kinetic measurement of insensitivity.’
    • ‘This relative insensitivity results from the balance of two countervailing factors.’
    • ‘Remarkably, the insensitivity to antibiotics exhibited by these cells is nonheritable.’
    • ‘Some of the alleles showed no significant difference in insensitivity to either isomer.’
    1. 2.1 Lack of awareness or ability to respond to something.
      ‘the growth of our insensitivity to things of beauty’
      ‘a complete insensitivity to the power of the written word’
      • ‘In recent years, there has been no other court justice with a personal history so loaded with insensitivity to racial discrimination.’
      • ‘It indicates a critical insensitivity to the meaning of Hawthorne's text.’
      • ‘Their defense ministry is accused of cultural and environmental insensitivity.’
      • ‘The indifference and insensitivity to democratic principles start here.’
      • ‘Insensitivity to social cues may produce maladaptive interpersonal styles characterized by low levels of prosocial behavior and high levels of aggressive behavior.’
      • ‘Its failure to delve properly into the past also explains its insensitivity to certain kinds of censorship and to the continued, heavy presence of secret police.’
      • ‘This is just another example of our insensitivity to cultural diversity.’
      • ‘One side accuses the other of insensitivity to cultural losses.’
      • ‘Insensitivity to the past also helps explain the absence of judicial and prison reform.’
      • ‘His arrogance of manner and insensitivity on matters of social concern made him an unpredictable colleague in an era of populist politics.’