Definition of the avant-garde noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

     

    the avant-garde

     noun
    noun
    BrE BrE//ˌævɒ̃ ˈɡɑːd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˌævɑ̃ː ˈɡɑːrd//
     
    (from French) Styles of art, Styles of music
     
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  1. 1[singular] new and very modern ideas in art, music or literature that are sometimes surprising or shocking See related entries: Styles of art, Styles of music
  2. 2[singular + singular or plural verb] a group of artists, etc. who introduce new and very modern ideas
  3. Word Origin late Middle English (denoting the vanguard of an army): from French, literally ‘vanguard’. Current senses date from the early 20th cent.Extra examples The theatre shows a lot of avant-garde work.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: the avant-garde