Also found in: Thesaurus, Idioms.


adj. Informal
1. Haughty or presumptuous, especially for one's rank or social standing: "At Vassar the girls she knew were better dressed than she was and had uppity finishing school manners" (John Dos Passos).
2. Not complacent or deferential; strongly self-assertive: "Even those who'd mastered the broom, Andrew Carnegie said ... needed to get a little uppity at some point" (Megan Hustad).

[From up.]

up′pi·ti·ness, up′pi·ty·ness n.


(ˈʌpɪtɪnəs) or


the quality or state of being uppity
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.uppityness - assumption of airs beyond one's stationuppityness - assumption of airs beyond one's station
effrontery, presumptuousness, presumption, assumption - audacious (even arrogant) behavior that you have no right to; "he despised them for their presumptuousness"


References in periodicals archive ?
Embittered by the get-inline treatment of black entertainers, Cosby then and there refashioned himself around the myth of uppityness and well-to-do blackness so well that he became the mascot for the luxuries that he had never experienced.
(31) In Chutzpah, he defines the Jewish stereotype as "boldness, assertiveness, a willingness to demand what is due, to defy tradition, to challenge authority, to raise eyebrows." (32) He also recognizes that detractors define these sets of characteristics as "unmitigated gall, nerve, uppityness, arrogance, hypocritical demanding." (33)
Often times, the term is used in a derogatory way to negate the perceived "uppityness" of those who act in these ways as a way to undermine their assumed authority by reminding them of their true heritage, which usually includes elements of African ancestry.