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Liberals labeled him a reactionary opposed to any social progress.
  someone who is extremely opposed to change; or relating to such a viewpoint
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reactionary reactionaries
Reactionary is most often used by people who are eager for political or social change to describe people or ideas that they consider exceedingly conservative. People can be referred to as reactionaries or as having reactionary responses. The implication is that such people do not think about what is best. Instead they instinctively react in opposition to any change.
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  • Liberals labeled him a reactionary opposed to any social progress.
  • It seemed odd to have to explain in a court of law something so fundamental about childhood, but the commitment to harsh punishments for children was so intense and reactionary that we had to articulate these basic facts.
    Bryan Stevenson  --  Just Mercy
  • One of the reactionary intellectuals who attacked the Party and socialism?
    Ji-Li Jiang  --  Red Scarf Girl
  • The dis—United States would fragment into several petty, squabbling autocracies, proving the contention of European monarchists and reactionaries that this harebrained experiment in democracy could not last.
    James M. McPherson  --  What They Fought For - 1861-1865

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  • He is a good solid man in many ways, born in a peanut patch over in Southampton County, but as you may recall a man of such simon-pure reactionary beliefs that he often sounds rabid even by Virginia standards.
    William Styron  --  Sophie’s Choice
  • Some reactionary.
    Margaret Atwood  --  Cat’s Eye
  • For that is what animals are, conservative, one might even say reactionary.
    Yann Martel  --  Life of Pi
  • He exhibited sounder judgment in matters of architectural merit than Mr. Austen Heller, the outmoded reactionary who has suddenly turned art critic.
    Ayn Rand  --  The Fountainhead
  • You’re known as …. as a reactionary who’s opposed to Washington policies.
    Ayn Rand  --  Atlas Shrugged
  • Meanwhile the really new people are very often unobserved by them, or even despised as reactionaries of grovelling tendencies.
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky  --  Crime and Punishment

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  • Is it progressive or reactionary?
    C.S. Lewis  --  The Screwtape Letters
  • He said he would bring out a reactionary force if I needed one.
    Malcolm Gladwell  --  Blink
  • For a while there was a reaction, so far as a certain element of my own race was concerned, but later these reactionary ones seemed to have been won over to my way of believing and acting.
    Booker T. Washington  --  Up From Slavery: An Autobiography
  • Talk about reactionary!
    Meg Cabot  --  The Princess Diaries
  • You are a reactionary, then?
    James Joyce  --  A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
  • The reactionary excitement that gave her a proud self-mastery had not subsided, and she looked at the future with a sense of calm choice.
    George Eliot  --  The Mill on the Floss
  • These narrow-minded reactionaries are still fighting us.
    Rudolfo Anaya  --  Take the Tortillas out of Your Poetry
  • If askance he eyed the good looks, cheery health and frank enjoyment of young life in Billy Budd, it was because these went along with a nature that, as Claggart magnetically felt, had in its simplicity never willed malice or experienced the reactionary bite of that serpent.
    Herman Melville  --  Billy Budd
  • In addition, it called for a national day of work stoppage in protest against the racist and reactionary policies of the government.
    Nelson Mandela  --  Long Walk to Freedom
  • There are political reactionaries who’ve been saying something close to this for years.
    Robert M. Pirsig  --  Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
  • It was one of the reactionary jingo papers of my own district in which from time to time violently abusive references to me were circulated.
    Hermann Hesse  --  Steppenwolf
  • Afraid of the word ’politics’ (which eventually became a synonym for Communism among the more reactionary elements, so I hear, and it was worth your life to use the word!), and with a screw tightened here, a bolt fastened there, a push, a pull, a yank, art and literature were soon like a great twine of taffy strung about, being twisted in braids and tied in knots and thrown in all directions, until there was no more resiliency and no more savor to it.
    Ray Bradbury  --  The Martian Chronicles
  • And even those Negroes who had moved down from Canada to Medallion, who remarked every chance they got that they had never been slaves, felt a loosening of the reactionary compassion for Southern-born blacks Sula had inspired in them.
    Toni Morrison  --  Sula
  • Gillingham looked at him, and wondered whether it would ever happen that the reactionary spirit induced by the world’s sneers and his own physical wishes would make Phillotson more orthodoxly cruel to her than he had erstwhile been informally and perversely kind.
    Thomas Hardy  --  Jude the Obscure
  • Where is the Opposition that has not hurled back the branding reproach of Communism, against the more advanced opposition parties, as well as against its reactionary adversaries?
    Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels  --  The Communist Manifesto
  • His action was characteristic of the man who was labeled a reactionary, who was proud to be a conservative and who authored these lasting definitions of liberalism and liberty: Liberalism implies particularly freedom of thought, freedom from orthodox dogma, the right of others to think differently from one’s self.
    John F. Kennedy  --  Profiles in Courage
  • They’re a gang of selfish, self-seeking reactionaries.
    Alfred Bester  --  The Demolished Man
  • What reactionary views!
    Grace MacGowan Cooke  --  The Power and the Glory
  • She wound up marrying the first dentist she ever worked for—a smug little reactionary twenty years older than she was.
    Octavia Butler  --  Kindred
  • I hope we are agreed in our conviction that Spirit, however absolute it may be, can never become the advocate of reactionary forces.
    Thomas Mann  --  The Magic Mountain
  • The young man told him that he was the nephew of a well-known revolutionary, but that his parents were incorrigible reactionaries, real dodoes, as he called them.
    Boris Pasternak  --  Doctor Zhivago
  • From my reading of Marxist literature and from conversations with Marxists, I have gained the impression that communists regard the parliamentary system of the West as undemocratic and reactionary.
    Nelson Mandela  --  I Am Prepared to Die
  • Since he did not hesitate to explain his position in public every time he had the chance, for everyone but his own co-religionists he soon became a caricature of the picturesque, reactionary oligarch.
    Isabel Allende  --  The House of Spirits
  • From the point of view of this formulation, Surrealism in plastic art is a reactionary tendency which is attempting to restore "outside" subject matter.
    Clement Greenberg  --  Avant-garde and Kitsch
  • Although a half-dozen Southern papers had toyed with his thesis, Fitzhugh was not taken too seriously in the South, but Lincoln seized upon his ultra-reactionary ideas as a symbol.13 Even as early as 1856 the Republicans had been exploiting the theme of the menace of slavery to free labor.
    Richard Hofstadter  --  Abraham Lincoln and the Self-Made Myth
  • I think the brother’s speech was backward and reactionary!" he said.
    Ralph Ellison  --  Invisible Man
  • ’It would be very reactionary,’ they said, ’no one will believe it.
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky  --  The Brothers Karamazov
  • Other words used in variable meanings, in most cases more or less dishonestly, are: CLASS, TOTALITARIAN, SCIENCE, PROGRESSIVE, REACTIONARY BOURGEOIS, EQUALITY.
    George Orwell  --  Politics and the English Language
  • Reactionary as it is, corporal punishment is better than nothing.
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky  --  Notes from the Underground
  • They say the church is reactionary," Silvia Lores says.
    Christina Garcia  --  Dreaming in Cuban
  • "Yes," she said, "they are reactionaries who call themselves progressive: they defend the individual against the state.
    John Le Carre  --  The Spy Who Came In From The Cold
  • But at this last stroke the reactionaries were so alarmed, that they were, determined to force the executive into action.
    William Morris  --  News from Nowhere
  • It set out in detail how Comrade E. M. S. Namboodiripad’s government intended to enforce land reforms, neutralize the police, subvert the judiciary and "Restrain the Hand of the Reactionary anti-People Congress Government at the Center.
    Arundhati Roy  --  The God of Small Things
  • There is no doubt that your grandfather’s reactionary class standing had a bad influence on your father’s thoughts, and he naturally passed them on to you.
    Ji-Li Jiang  --  Red Scarf Girl
  • We must not allow the reactionary forces to hoard their treasures….
    Ji-Li Jiang  --  Red Scarf Girl
  • Yet the reactionary monster still lives on the blood of the workers.
    Ji-Li Jiang  --  Red Scarf Girl
  • The sides of the trucks were covered with red banners that said things like SWEEP AWAY ALL THE REACTIONARY MONSTERS and DESTROY THE FOUR OLDS AND ESTABLISH THE FOUR NEWS.
    Ji-Li Jiang  --  Red Scarf Girl
  • Did you suppose I was such a monster, such a reactionary, such a slave driver?
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky  --  Crime and Punishment
  • But terrible tragedy lay hidden behind this grinning through a horse-collar of the reactionary party.
    William Morris  --  News from Nowhere
  • Sounds like the reactionary moved to the right town.
    Octavia Butler  --  Kindred
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Associated words [difficulty]:   reactionary [4]
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Most commonly used in these subjects:   Fine Arts & Music, Philosophy, Religion - Christianity
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