Definition of countercurrent in US English:



Pronunciation /ˌkoun(t)ərˈkərənt//ˈkoun(t)ərˌkər(ə)nt/
  • A current flowing in an opposite direction to another.

    • ‘Throughout the history of naïve, misleading realism, there has been a countercurrent of pseudorealism, which has satirized the shortcomings of this mode we have been conditioned to unquestioningly accept.’
    • ‘The countercurrent could be interrupted when the cold surface water in the Arctic becomes less salty and fails to sink, and the water could become less salty when the warming climate increases the Arctic rainfall.’
    • ‘Swirling beneath the seemingly simple storylines of the black musicals Krasner discusses are complex countercurrents of resistance.’
    • ‘While we've seen a flood of antiwar activity over the past eight months, we've also witnessed a powerful countercurrent of political repression.’
    • ‘So, although there is a certain comfortable feeling that attaches to the word ‘tradition,’ the word contains many countercurrents.’
    • ‘In the months, or sometimes even years, between flows, a silent countercurrent moves in the opposite direction.’
    • ‘Our plan was to cruise eastward, taking advantage of the countercurrents along Cuba's south coast.’
    • ‘A Clinician's Guide is part of a growing countercurrent within psychiatry, psychology, and allied disciplines, aimed at redressing the shortcomings of that legacy.’
    • ‘But while my peers reveled in their social ascent, a countercurrent of despair lay directly in my particular path.’
    • ‘These films are a steady countercurrent to the seemingly endless paeans to World War II, a recognition that there have been quite a few wars and generations since the ‘greatest.’’
    • ‘Subservience, sexuality, and hostility surfaced in her relationships with her companions, creating countercurrents to trust, support, and love.’
    • ‘Fortunately, an ethical countercurrent exists which is actively promoting the concept of personhood in dementia.’
    • ‘Yet from the beginning there were countercurrents of criticism and protest even within orthodox Iberian Catholicism.’
    • ‘It has a powerful mainstream, but it also has many countercurrents.’
    • ‘The winds associated with this broader wake spawn a narrow eastward countercurrent that draws warm water from west to east.’
    • ‘When I went through the Brandenburg Gate, I had to push through a countercurrent of girls parading their lovely selves through a temporary narrow passage of plywood.’
    • ‘Each of the farms had a deep water, cold storage unit connected to a long cable that could be winched up and down to provide drag from deep countercurrents.’
    • ‘Not a jellyfish appeared, of course, but the day was chilly and breezy, and the shoreline countercurrent was running at double its usual force.’
    • ‘Dark, dense lines sweep down from the top in many drawings, echoed and at points countered by paler liquid lines which run in opposing directions, suggesting currents and countercurrents.’
    • ‘It was a powerful countercurrent against the tide of democracy.’
    whirlwind, whirlpool, gyre, maelstrom, eddy, swirl, swirling, counterflow
    View synonyms


Pronunciation /ˌkoun(t)ərˈkərənt//ˌkoun(t)ərˈkər(ə)nt/
  • In or with opposite directions of flow.

    • ‘The choroid rete mirabile is a large organ behind the retina of the eye, composed of several thousand capillaries arranged countercurrent to each other.’
    • ‘Gases flow countercurrent to mass flow in the cement manufacturing process.’