Definition of crosscurrent in US English:



  • 1A current in a river or sea which flows across another.

    • ‘Obviously you get caught in cross-currents both ways.’
    • ‘Anchors are installed on both sides of the roadway to maintain its position in cross-currents and tide changes.’
    • ‘The pictures showed that when the water reached a certain speed, it began to break into eddies, waves and cross-currents.’
    • ‘The trick once down was to keep an eye on bubbles and fish behaviour for telltale signs of cross-currents and whirlpools.’
    • ‘In any case two days campaigning for the second round does seem to be a very short time, with large numbers of MP's switching their support like strong cross-currents in an ocean.’
    • ‘The water level continued to rise, and swift cross-currents developed.’
  • 2A process or tendency that is in conflict with another.

    ‘strong crosscurrents of debate’
    • ‘Major art often flourishes on the fault lines between civilizations, fed by complex cross-currents between one form of life and another.’
    • ‘There's something studied and strained about the piece, almost too self-conscious in its push-pull of cross-currents.’
    • ‘There are today, however, newfound cross-currents and ambiguities.’
    • ‘The narrative momentum is maintained by a flowing rhythm, without analytical undertow or plotting cross-currents that could impede the inevitable, although not predictable, conclusion.’
    • ‘The tax controversy is but one example of how national cross-currents induce a federalist drift.’
    • ‘These cross-currents appear to have left the foreign exchange market in a state of tenuous equilibrium.’
    • ‘But before we get too carried away, it is worth noting that we are expecting some strong cross-currents over the coming months.’
    • ‘This is going to be a strange one, with lots of cross-currents flowing in zany directions.’
    • ‘In all these cross-currents of presidential theory, there is one more theme - so apparent though unstated.’
    • ‘They also tend to get caught in the cross-currents of regulation.’
    • ‘What is certain, however, is that it revealed many cross-currents and counter-currents within the political parties.’
    • ‘Nonetheless, the economy continues to be buffeted by strong cross-currents.’
    • ‘He was a deeply analytical guy, but inside of that were all the cross-currents of a chaotic life.’
    • ‘There are always cross-currents and enclaves, deviances or doublings back from what appears to be the main path.’
    • ‘The artist achieved a powerful expression of the social cross-currents of the time.’
    • ‘The cross-currents of various conversations seem to be swirling around me.’
    • ‘There are many, many cross-currents in this discussion of illegal immigration.’
    • ‘Things are sure challenging and interesting, with cross-currents galore.’
    • ‘She said there are all kinds of cross-currents of laws in this country.’
    • ‘A new official version of events was needed to steer the state through the historical cross-currents flowing across the border as everyone went back to their history books.’