Definition of preoccupation noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//priˌɒkjuˈpeɪʃn//
    ; NAmE NAmE//priˌɑːkjuˈpeɪʃn//
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  1. 1[uncountable, countable] preoccupation (with something) a state of thinking about something continuously; something that you think about frequently or for a long time synonym obsession She found his preoccupation with money irritating. His current preoccupation is the appointment of the new manager.
  2. 2[uncountable] a mood created by thinking or worrying about something and ignoring everything else She spoke slowly, in a state of preoccupation.
  3. Word Originlate 16th cent. (first used in rhetoric in the sense ‘anticipating and meeting objections beforehand’): from Latin praeoccupatio(n-), from praeoccupare ‘seize beforehand’.Extra examples Their chief preoccupation was how to feed their families. his growing preoccupation with death his lifelong preoccupation with Chinese art forms our society’s unhealthy preoccupation with women’s bodies Erika had her own preoccupations. His later work reflects a growing preoccupation with death. She is very attuned to the current preoccupations of senior management. The contract threatened to become a major preoccupation for Laura.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: preoccupation