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1. Exercise or application of the intellect.
2. Devotion to exercise or development of the intellect.

in′tel·lec′tu·al·ist n.
in′tel·lec′tu·al·is′tic adj.


1. development and exercise of the intellect
2. the placing of excessive value on the intellect, esp with disregard for the emotions
3. (Philosophy) philosophy
a. the doctrine that reason is the ultimate criterion of knowledge
b. the doctrine that deliberate action is consequent on a process of conscious or subconscious reasoning
ˌintelˈlectualist n, adj
ˌintelˌlectualˈistic adj
ˌintelˌlectualˈistically adv


(ˌɪn tlˈɛk tʃu əˌlɪz əm)

1. devotion to intellectual pursuits.
2. the exercise of the intellect.
3. excessive emphasis on abstract or intellectual matters, esp. with a lack of proper consideration for emotions.
in`tel•lec′tu•al•ist, n.
in`tel•lec`tu•al•is′tic, adj.
in`tel•lec`tu•al•is′ti•cal•ly, adv.


1. the exercise of the intellect.
2. a devotion to intellectual activities.
3. an excessive emphasis on intellect and a resulting neglect of emotion. — intellectualistic, adj.
See also: Knowledge


References in periodicals archive ?
The incarnational realism of Christian sensibility to the Body of Christ inevitably strains against abstractly spiritual or intellectualistic modes of interpretation.
If the cause of Urizen's fall is his intellectualistic insistence on certainty, then criticism has repeated this error by conceiving of the Contrary relation between Urizen and Los, the written Book and the living reader, according to formal models of blindness and insight or subversion and containment.
It can be argued that much of the older Western approach to knowledge had itself been overly intellectualistic and insufficiently historical, but it had taken life's higher meaning very seriously.
His discussion of Calvin's understanding of divine self-manifestation by means of visions (chapter 5 and 10), oracles (chapter 5), and the "manifestations of piety in the church" (chapter 11) leads us away from the overly intellectualistic reading of Calvin that has characterized scholarship, and it opens up a refreshing consideration of Calvin as a theologian of experience.
Thus there was no elitism here, nor anything intellectualistic, but rather an existential concern above all.
What we can say is that all these interpretations reveal an intellectualistic conception of the connections between perception and knowledge.
Brustein judges the playwright's early work as "clearly the offshoot of a very intellectualistic mind, attuned more to literature than to life.
Hardie, "The Final Good in Aristotle's Ethics," Philosophy 40 (1965): 277-95, articulates the view of wisdom as dominant, with Aristotle's approach appearing both intellectualistic and selfish, while John Ackrill, "Aristotle on Eudaimonia," Proceedings of the British Academy 60 (1974): 339-59, proposes an inclusive reading that defends a more humane view of Aristotle.
Joseph Pappin III, in his "Freedom and Authority: Burke and Sartre in Dialogue," helps pinpoint "the abiding distinction" between Jean-Paul Sartre's "radical subjectivism and the primacy given to the 'will"' and Edmund Burke's "realistic, intellectualistic political thought applied to man's situation," stressing "political reason as against "the false utopianism" sought by Sartre.
There is the danger in our time that the term "faith" will be collapsed into a bloodless, intellectualistic acceptance of credal statements.
The twentieth century has certainly had its share of radical questionings, but very often these questions (and their answers) have been couched in an intellectualistic and technically distantiating language, which as such appears defensive, with the result that the urgencies emerging from life tend to be euphemized.
Maguire, "Ratio Practica and the Intellectualistic Fallacy," Journal of Religious Ethics 10 (1982) 22-39.