- a negative or pessimistic attitude.
- Psychology. a tendency to resist external commands, suggestions, or expectations, or internal stimuli, as hunger, by doing nothing or something contrary or unrelated to the stimulus.
- any system of negative philosophy, as agnosticism or skepticism.
- a tendency to be or a state of being unconstructively critical
- any sceptical or derisive system of thought
- psychiatry refusal to do what is expected or suggested or the tendency to do the opposite
n.1824, “the policy of opposition;” see negative + -ism. In a psychological sense, it is attested from 1892. n.
- A tendency to do the opposite of what one is requested to do, or to resist stubbornly for no apparent reason.