Definition of streetwise in English:



  • 1Having the experience and knowledge necessary to deal with the potential difficulties or dangers of life in an urban environment.

    ‘I wasn't streetwise enough to figure out what he had in mind’
    • ‘Yeah, she's got grade A's in every O-level, but when it comes to general knowledge or being streetwise, she struggles a bit sometimes.’
    • ‘This trick was quite common in Kingston Hill at the time and streetwise citizens were probably becoming rather too wise to it.’
    • ‘With this level of fear it is questionable to what degree today's working class children are becoming streetwise, and able to look after themselves.’
    • ‘His experiences are contrasted with those of Joe, who is much more politically aware, cynical and streetwise.’
    • ‘We have also got a lot more streetwise, and playing against the best sides has raised skill levels and mental awareness.’
    • ‘You can very quickly go very high and very low in the same week and I think it makes London kids very streetwise and very society-wise.’
    • ‘I am streetwise and clever and realise that any other course of action might have led to me having my head kicked in.’
    • ‘The striker is only 19 but was still streetwise enough to cut across Balde as he entered the box.’
    • ‘You had to be young, streetwise and easy to talk to as well as being able to do the practical things - literacy and numeracy, doing presentations, working with other people and all that.’
    • ‘Unfortunately, too much of Blige's appeal is wrapped up in her gruff, streetwise persona and not enough is focused on her enjoyable but often pedestrian musical instincts.’
    • ‘Poulter is streetwise enough not to bite the hand that feeds.’
    • ‘They've just got to be a little bit more streetwise and that comes through making mistakes - as long as they learn from them.’
    • ‘She would say that she was streetwise and it wouldn't happen to her, but I was terrified.’
    • ‘In accepting the challenge of writing a chapter on the relationship between theory and research in criminology, I am streetwise enough to know that I invite at least two lines of criticism.’
    • ‘He was streetwise, but at the same time there was this fragility about him.’
    • ‘PC Hall said: ‘A lot of children over the age of five are very streetwise and get a basic understanding from their parents.’’
    • ‘They even share a house servant, Manuelo, more worldly and streetwise than anyone else around.’
    • ‘Another reason for the jump was the big influx of students in Sheffield who ‘were not necessarily streetwise,’ said Mr Hedges.’
    • ‘He is an amazingly streetwise guy with a tremendous intellect.’
    • ‘She has all the intellectual abilities, but is more streetwise than the other two.’
    • ‘Forced to play this ‘home’ fixture at Northampton, the Londoners attracted a crowd of just 3,595 and were edged out in an entertaining game by their more streetwise visitors.’
    wise, clever, intelligent, showing great knowledge, with great knowledge, knowledgeable, sensible, sage
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Reflective of modern urban life, especially that of urban youth.
      ‘streetwise fashion’
      • ‘It seems trite to refer to this band as sassy or streetwise or sophisticated because that's what everybody says.’
      • ‘It's stuffed full of Japanese cultural references, slang, and streetwise situations.’
      • ‘In the near future, he is planning to add a new company to cater to more streetwise fashion garments for the younger, impressionable audience.’
      • ‘Skinny suggests active. Skinny is more fashionable, more streetwise, more plugged-in, but not if you are seen to be struggling to maintain it.’
      • ‘Putner's satire on the supposedly streetwise US stand-up scene is biting: he conveys masterfully the gulf between Stevens's self-image and the bathetic reality.’
      • ‘Think modern fabrics and traditional tailoring, with streetwise twists.’
      • ‘The designer said she's trying her hand at streetwise fashion with a musical twist.’
      worldly wise, sophisticated, suave, urbane, polished, refined, mature, cultivated, cultured, knowing, initiated, media-savvy
      View synonyms