Definition of collective in English:

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Pronunciation: /kəˈlɛktɪv/


1Done by people acting as a group: a collective protest
More example sentences
  • In this case, collective organisation to protest at rent increases brought trade unions into the struggle for improved community life.
  • Residents of Sandy Lane have less than three weeks to register their collective protest to Bradford Council Planning office about this new building development.
  • The bulk of the protests were collective: strikes, bandhs, processions, boycotts and dharnas.
1.1Relating to or shared by all the members of a group: ministers who share collective responsibility a collective sigh of relief from parents
More example sentences
  • Melville said: ‘The players are very honest and they share collective responsibility and no one is going to fall out over this.’
  • They meet once a week, and every two months elect a coordinator from among themselves to share collective responsibilities with the managing trustee.
  • The idea is to give fans the chance to pool their collective resources to acquire shares and gain a voice at board level.
common, shared, joint, combined, mutual, communal, united, allied, cooperative, collaborative;
aggregate, cumulative, undivided, pooled
1.2Taken as a whole; aggregate: the collective power of the workforce
More example sentences
  • Not only because they make up the absolute majority in most modern countries, but also because of the indispensable role of workers in the economic system, and the collective power that accrues to the working class.
  • Individuals are expected to act on behalf of the collective whole, and the corporate body is expected to act in the normative interests of its members.
  • But it's not one fact, but the facts taken together as a collective whole that raise a question.


1A cooperative enterprise: the anarchist collective and bookshop
More example sentences
  • And there will be an expensive and politically complicated process of consolidating numerous small collectives into productive big enterprises.
  • These are only a handful of examples with many more similar instances in co-ops, collectives and worker owned enterprises, around the world.
  • Factors such as a lack of trust and low community cohesion, limited access to public goods, and the existence of social collectives such as religious groups have been common characteristics of these contexts.
1.1A collective farm.
Example sentences
  • These bigger farms would be called collectives.
  • Tito nationalized many of Yugoslavia's farms into collectives.
  • Will they choose to work for 30 pesos a day in factories that take the place of hillside farms and remote collectives?



Example sentences
  • It's time to hook into that collectiveness that is humanity and be a part of it.
  • An activist leader, Zarni, also commented on the advantage of using the Internet to share information, as well as the advantageous psychological factor that it provided by giving the activists a sense of collectiveness.
  • The author does not discuss the collectiveness that characterizes many non-Western cultures and how that too may be a positive influence on prognosis for schizophrenics in those countries.


Pronunciation: /kəlɛkˈtɪvɪti/
Example sentences
  • Unable to craft for itself a new form of civic collectivity, secular liberalism remains mired in individualism and blind to cultures built around universal ideals and collective aspirations.
  • Its vocation is to regulate tensions and maintain equilibrium between diversity and uniformity, individuality and collectivity, to enhance social cohesion and solidarity.
  • The advocates of the individual versus the collectivity have not always been called conservatives but in England they have always been there - as I set out at length here


Late Middle English (in the sense 'representing many individuals'): from Old French collectif, -ive or Latin collectivus, from collect- 'gathered together', from the verb colligere (see collect1).

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: col¦lect|ive

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