verb(in phrase épater les bourgeois)
Shock people who are conventional or complacent.
- Whether this was born of a genuine revolutionary spirit or just to épater les bourgeois probably no longer matters.
- If his views are sincerely held, there sometimes seems to be an element of pour épater les bourgeois in his expression of them.
- Did her interest in photography owe as much to a real feeling for art or journalism as it did to an almost erotically charged desire, only too common among bored suburban teenagers, to épater les bourgeois?
Early 20th century: French, literally 'startle, shock'.
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