Definition of gradualism in English:


Line breaks: grad¦ual|ism
Pronunciation: /ˈgradʒʊəlɪz(ə)m


[mass noun]
  • 1A policy of gradual reform rather than sudden change or revolution.
    More example sentences
    • Indeed, it can be argued that a policy of gradualism has served the kingdom well.
    • The author argues for gradualism in change, rather than revolutionary overthrow of current systems.
    • Another issue concerning historical change is that of gradualism as opposed to revolution.
  • 1.1 Biology The hypothesis that evolution proceeds chiefly by the accumulation of gradual changes (in contrast to the punctuationist model).
    More example sentences
    • Punctuated equilibrium contradicts the previously held theory of evolutionary gradualism, and certainly raises questions about adaptation, selection and survival of the fittest.
    • Darwinian gradualism and a growing emphasis on large populations accounted for the origins of species.
    • For Dawkins, gradualism musts also fit the empirical facts, and the empirical facts on extinctions, speciation and periods of relative stasis are mounting.



More example sentences
  • Nevertheless, for gradualists, who hoped that devolution would provide a workable and stable form of home rule that could endure for years before coming under question, recent developments have been sobering.
  • He can't be a gradualist because he has only got four years.
  • Gore talks about more issues and in general is more of a gradualist.


Pronunciation: /-ˈlɪstɪk/
More example sentences
  • Since environmental change was gradual, evolution could not help but be gradualistic also.
  • In the final analysis the authors identify key problems with gradualistic evolution of the immune system.
  • I actually had a very interesting opportunity, a head start in a sense, because at that time, these academics were dogmatically teaching the gradualistic theory of evolution as fact.

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