Definition of illiteracy in English:

illiteracy

noun

  • 1The inability to read or write.

    ‘the ineffective educational system meant that illiteracy was widespread’
    • ‘Illiteracy is not obvious to casual inspection and may be difficult to detect through simple questioning.’
    • ‘Rural adult illiteracy is a matter of alarming concern.’
    • ‘Even in Managua, the Nicaraguan capital, the illiteracy rate is very high.’
    • ‘The literacy rate for women has stagnated, and, in certain regions, the level of female illiteracy is very high.’
    • ‘The consequences of illiteracy are far reaching.’
    • ‘Illiteracy has a new enemy, and it comes in the shape of the new Miss America.’
    • ‘Further, there are social issues that are negatively impacted by this very topic of illiteracy.’
    • ‘He emphasised the need for removing illiteracy.’
    • ‘Illiteracy rates among year three students were cut in half.’
    • ‘When North Korea faced the task of building a new national culture, it faced a serious problem of illiteracy.’
    • ‘Adult illiteracy fell from 37 percent in 1978 to less than 17 percent in 1999.’
    • ‘The surname could also have changed form when migration is combined with illiteracy.’
    • ‘Standards of education, while high during the 1970s, have slumped dramatically and illiteracy rates have soared.’
    • ‘Functional illiteracy is considered anything less than a seventh-grade reading level.’
    • ‘His illiteracy means that he didn't read the warnings on his medication, leading to a dangerous reaction.’
    • ‘Poverty and illiteracy characterized southern Italy, where two-thirds of the immigrants originated.’
    • ‘We should therefore make the tackling of illiteracy a priority in 2004.’
    • ‘Rumor has particular currency in Tibet because illiteracy is high, some say, particularly in rural areas.’
    • ‘I will never forget a poster devoted to the eradication of illiteracy.’
    • ‘By 1939, illiteracy had been reduced to 12 percent and was less than 1 percent in 2000.’
    illiterateness, inability to read or write
    ignorance, unawareness, inexperience, unenlightenment, benightedness, lack of knowledge, lack of education
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Lack of knowledge in a particular subject; ignorance.
      ‘his economic illiteracy’
      • ‘Perhaps the religious illiteracy of so many otherwise well-educated young Catholics is too familiar to bear mentioning again.’
      • ‘Moreover, this stubborn illiteracy is being actively spread by its fundamentalist churches to other parts of the world.’
      • ‘Of course, scientific illiteracy is a real problem, but it is not the only problem with which rapid scientific advancement confronts us.’
      • ‘What we actually find today is a frightening biblical illiteracy, even in churches where the Bible is regarded as central.’
      • ‘Americans seem to be particularly notorious for their geographic illiteracy.’
      • ‘In an era of biblical illiteracy, this approach will help some.’
      • ‘Ordinarily, such arguments would be dismissed as economic illiteracy.’
      • ‘Yet even as we rely on numbers, we are bedeviled by innumeracy, the mathematical equivalent of illiteracy.’
      • ‘I get annoyed by the illiteracy of the debate.’
      • ‘Businessmen habitually complain about the economic illiteracy of the public, and with good reason.’
      • ‘Australians are not immune to the financial illiteracy problem and symptoms here, just as elsewhere, abound.’
      • ‘He says theological illiteracy is now rampant.’
      • ‘I provide this here so that you may see the magnitude of the battle we are waging against ignorance and scientific illiteracy.’
      • ‘This sounds like a conspiracy of some sort, to lull our aggressive adolescents into a lobotomized state of social and political illiteracy.’

Pronunciation

illiteracy

/i(l)ˈlidərəsē//ɪ(l)ˈlɪdərəsi/