crisis


crisis
crisis
1. The word is derived via Latin from a Greek root meaning ‘turning point’, and should strictly refer to a moment rather than a continuing process, so that uses such as a prolonged crisis are strictly speaking self-contradictory. However, a word as useful as crisis will not allow itself to be strait-jacketed in this way, and many examples of the disputed use will be found:

• The continuing and ever occurring crisis in the inner-cities, where large numbers of people are trapped in a cycle of poverty —Black Panther, 1973

• The fact that today we are in deep and continuing crisis is evident from other sources than the Morning Star —Morning Star, 2002.

Some element of change should be present in the meaning

• (The death of his father…triggers off a crisis for him too, producing a temporary breakdown, dismissal from his job, separation from his wife, the lot —Times, 1970)

and the word should not be used as an enfeebled synonym of words such as difficulty, dilemma, problem, and quandary

• (Scott Lithgow…were desperate for staff throughout the crisis —Economist, 1975

• To make matters worse a crisis in the Council came to a head —W. Green, 1988)

• Down came the rain again. Faced with the crisis of surrendering the proudest record in rugby, Munster dug deep again —Observer, 2007.

2. Crisis is often used with a defining word, either an adjective or an attributive noun as in economic crisis, energy crisis, financial crisis, food crisis, hostage crisis, identity crisis, midlife crisis, refugee crisis, etc. It has also come to be used with the redundant addition of situation, a use that should be avoided:

• ☒ When a crisis situation with a pupil arises, exclusion follows too rapidly —Guardian, 2003.

3. The plural crises is often found in uses that are contrary to expectation on a strict evaluation of the word's meaning:

• Three simultaneous crises…that seemed worrisomely different from those of the past —Newsweek, 1973.


Modern English usage. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • crisis — cri‧sis [ˈkraɪss] noun crises PLURALFORM [ siːz] [countable, uncountable] 1. a period of great difficulty, danger, or uncertainty, especially in politics or economics: • Opposition leaders accused the president of ignoring the country s growing… …   Financial and business terms

  • Crisis — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Para otros usos de este término, véase Crisis (desambiguación). Crisis (del latín crisis, a su vez del griego κρίσις) es una coyuntura de cambios en cualquier aspecto de una realidad organizada pero inestable, sujeta …   Wikipedia Español

  • crisis — (plural crisis) sustantivo femenino 1. Cambio decisivo y brusco en el desarrollo de un proceso: El paciente ha entrado en una crisis irreversible. Tu hija ha tenido una crisis de crecimiento, de ahí la fiebre. La crisis religiosa del s.XVIda… …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • Crisis de fe — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Crisis de fe es un término comúnmente aplicado a períodos de duda intensa y conflicto interno en las creencias preconcebidas, prejuicios y decisiones vitales. Una crisis de fe puede ser un simple período de duda en… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Crisis — Cri sis (kr? s?s), n.; pl. {Crises} ( s?z). [L. crisis, Gr. ????, fr. ???? to separate. See {Certain}.] 1. The point of time when it is to be decided whether any affair or course of action must go on, or be modified or terminate; the decisive… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • crisis — f. med. Cambio rápido que se produce en el curso de una enfermedad cíclica y que suele anunciar la curación o el empeoramiento del estado del paciente. Medical Dictionary. 2011. crisis …   Diccionario médico

  • crisis — (Del lat. crisis, y este del gr. κρίσις). 1. f. Cambio brusco en el curso de una enfermedad, ya sea para mejorarse, ya para agravarse el paciente. 2. Mutación importante en el desarrollo de otros procesos, ya de orden físico, ya históricos o… …   Diccionario de la lengua española

  • Crisis (M*A*S*H) — Crisis M*A*S*H episode Episode no. Season 2 Episode 21 Directed by Don Weis Written by …   Wikipedia

  • crisis — (n.) early 15c., from Latinized form of Gk. krisis turning point in a disease (used as such by Hippocrates and Galen), lit. judgment, result of a trial, selection, from krinein to separate, decide, judge, from PIE root *krei to sieve,… …   Etymology dictionary

  • crisis — [krī′sis] n. pl. crises [krī′sēz΄] [L < Gr krisis < krinein, to separate, discern < IE * (s)krei , to sift, separate < base * (s)ker , to cut > SHEAR, L cernere, to separate, Ger rein, pure] 1. a) the turning point of a disease for …   English World dictionary