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action in accord with prevailing social standards, attitudes, practices, etc.
correspondence in form, nature, or character; agreement, congruity, or accordance.
compliance or acquiescence; obedience.
(often initial capital letter) compliance with the usages of an established church, especially the Church of England.
Geology. the relationship between adjacent strata.
Compare (def 2a).
Contemporary Examples

This view is accurate—Kesey is certainly interested in conformity and its discontents—but incomplete.
Ken Kesey’s Wars: “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” at 50 Nathaniel Rich July 25, 2012

Funeral was about childhood and death; Neon Bible was about organized religion; The Suburbs was about community and conformity.
‘Reflektor’ Makes Arcade Fire the Biggest Band in the World Andrew Romano October 28, 2013

She grew up in suburban New Jersey, in an island of conformity to which she never belonged.
Of Love and War Penelope Rowlands October 24, 2011

His subjects were not numbed into conformity, and actively chose to defy their group.
Eyal Press’s New Book Explores Moral Courage Eric Herschthal March 7, 2012

Ginsberg the ad man beats back against the conformity of the computer and is swallowed whole.
Mad Men’s ‘The Runaways’: Three-Way Sex and Self-Mutilation in the Craziest Episode Yet Marlow Stern May 11, 2014

Historical Examples

We choose our favorite author as we do our friend, from a conformity of humor and disposition.
Beauty Alexander Walker

Neatness was at all times my pride; but now plainness was the conformity to necessity.
Beaux and Belles of England Mary Robinson

It seems that I am about to be led to conclusions in conformity with empiristic ideas.
The Foundations of Science: Science and Hypothesis, The Value of Science, Science and Method Henri Poincar

A man must consider what a blindman’s-buff is this game of conformity.
Essays, First Series Ralph Waldo Emerson

The inference is still from particulars to particulars, though drawn in conformity, not to one, but to several formulæ.
Analysis of Mr. Mill’s System of Logic William Stebbing

noun (pl) -ities, -ances
compliance in actions, behaviour, etc, with certain accepted standards or norms
correspondence or likeness in form or appearance; congruity; agreement
compliance with the practices of an established church

early 15c., conformyte, from Middle French conformité (14c.), from Late Latin conformitatem (nominative conformitas), from conformis “similar in shape,” from conformare (see conform). Modern form is from 17c.

Agreement between an individual’s behavior and a group’s standards or expectations. A conformist is one who follows the majority’s desires or standards. (See also beatniks, bureaucrat, organization man, peer group, and peer pressure.)


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