One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An instance of unorthodox or controversial thinking, considered as a criminal offence or as socially unacceptable.‘thoughtcrimes are notoriously difficult to prosecute’
- ‘In this state Christian clergymen are threatened with jail for thoughtcrimes while vicious child molesters are released from prison to take up residence near schools and playgrounds.’
- ‘But his pleas were ignored, and two months later he was brought before Lysenko and an unnamed ally to answer for his thoughtcrime.’
- ‘But, as with most of these squabbles, he has been punished through sheer bureaucratic frogmarching as much as if he had been found guilty of thoughtcrime.’
- ‘Every single sentence is purged of any possible thoughtcrime, any suggestion that one's corporate goal is not striding confidently forward on its shining path.’
- ‘At a minimum, these guys are guilty of thoughtcrime, and at the worst, blasphemy.’
- ‘I'm perturbed at the subtextual agenda in this piece, which seeks to define thoughtcrime and convict the ex-leader of it, because after you remove the man the definition stands, and fits people like us quite neatly.’
1949: from George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four.
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