Definition of deafness in US English:



  • 1The condition of lacking the power of hearing or having impaired hearing.

    ‘the baby is at risk of being born with profound deafness’
    ‘loud music is a cause of deafness’
    • ‘It has left his face partially paralysed, resulted in total deafness, and now he is confined to a wheelchair.’
    • ‘She suffered partial deafness from birth, a disability which intensified with age.’
    • ‘Noise-induced hearing loss is one of the most common causes of nerve deafness.’
    • ‘Extreme effects of excessive quinine use include blindness and deafness.’
    • ‘A pioneering form of gene therapy has cured deafness in guinea pigs.’
    • ‘This finding could have future implications for a possible cure of some forms of hereditary deafness in humans and mice.’
    • ‘We have isolated a new gene for hereditary deafness.’
    • ‘Many couples with a family history of deafness or disability seek to have a child without that disability.’
    • ‘Fortunately, the rate of congenital deafness is small, as is the incidence of deafness caused by disease.’
    • ‘In around one in a thousand cases, measles can cause a serious brain condition which can lead to brain damage and deafness.’
    1. 1.1 The state of being unwilling or unable to hear or pay attention to something.
      ‘the deafness shown by political leaders’
      ‘a worrying example of deafness to human rights concerns’
      • ‘It's one of those juggernaut of fate stories where due to irresponsibility, stubbornness, and/or willful deafness, everything manages to turn out for the worst.’
      • ‘We should abandon our selective deafness, and listen to everything Community leaders say, and pay them the compliment of believing they mean it.’
      • ‘What can be done to solve the problem of the deafness of mainstream economists toward economic history?’
      • ‘The perfect crime consists, not in killing the victim, but in obtaining the silence of the witnesses, the deafness of the judges, and the inconsistency of the testimony.’
      • ‘Next time I hear that accusatory voice, I'm going to pretend I've contracted a sudden case of selective deafness.’
      • ‘Impatience with non-violence and the deafness shown by political leaders led to the emergence of more militant groups such as The Weathermen.’
      • ‘We are told that he is being brave in his deafness to majority opinion in Britain and the world.’
      • ‘On the other hand, we have political leaders who are displaying a certain deafness.’
      • ‘It takes a huge amount of blustering and a large measure of deafness to defend the sales of British gold.’
      • ‘Mr Jones said the protest had been motivated by the government's deafness on GM crops.’