Definition of rationalize in English:


Syllabification: ra·tion·al·ize
Pronunciation: /ˈraSHənlˌīz, ˈraSHnəˌlīz


[with object]
  • 1Attempt to explain or justify (one’s own or another’s behavior or attitude) with logical, plausible reasons, even if these are not true or appropriate: she couldn’t rationalize her urge to return to the cottage
    More example sentences
    • And the question would be so concise that there would be no room for you to minimise, justify or rationalise your behaviour.
    • ‘I like things to be just right,’ he said, laughing as he attempts to rationalise his behaviour.
    • Is this really a song about an abuser rationalizing his violent behaviour - or just a guy saying look I'm moody and hard to live with?
    justify, explain, explain away, account for, defend, vindicate, excuse
  • 2Make (a company, process, or industry) more efficient by reorganizing it in such a way as to dispense with unnecessary personnel or equipment: his success was due primarily to his ability to rationalize production
    More example sentences
    • This funds a huge burst of creativity - which is followed by a Darwinian process that rationalizes the industry.
    • The government just finished drawing up a rough plan for streamlining and rationalizing the corporations at the end of last year.
    • Hurt by a downturn in the print industry, Wyndeham has been rationalising its business units to improve efficiency.
    streamline, reorganize, modernize, update; trim, hone, simplify, downsize, prune
  • 3 Mathematics Convert (a function or expression) to a rational form.
    More example sentences
    • I don't care about rationalising denominators with surds in them, and I don't care that by using maths induction you can prove many equations to be right or wrong.
    • He knew that when some irrational number produced a very large quotient then it could be rationalised to produce an extremely accurate approximation to some irrational.
    • These effects should be considered when rationalizing the physical significance of n.



Pronunciation: /ˌraSHənl-əˈzāSHən, ˌraSHnələ-/
More example sentences
  • They'll bounce right back with excuses, rationalizations, and inane explanations of powers that weren't there in the first place.
  • Ingmar Bergman said, ‘Explanations are clumsy rationalizations with hindsight.’
  • Most certainly, however, they are an argument for their rationalisation and for strict management.


More example sentences
  • Shaq's success has exposed a host of critics and rationalizers - including Shaq himself - as clueless.
  • Indeed, there is no ‘why,’ a word which belongs to the accountants and rationalizers.
  • On these and many other questions, rationalizers changed their minds.

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