Difference Wiki

Oppression vs. Suppression: What's the Difference?

Edited by Huma Saeed || By Sawaira Riaz || Updated on October 4, 2023
Oppression is the cruel or unjust treatment of groups, while suppression is the act of preventing or stopping an action or expression.

Key Differences

Oppression often refers to the unjust and prolonged dominance or control exerted over certain individuals or groups. It manifests in societal structures where there's an imbalance of power, leading to the marginalized feeling subjugated or persecuted. Suppression, on the other hand, pertains to the act of subduing or halting something, often a feeling, activity, or piece of information.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023
In the context of human rights, oppression is frequently linked with systemic discrimination, where particular groups face hindrances due to race, gender, or other factors. Suppression, in this context, would mean the intentional act of silencing or quashing those who oppose or challenge dominant narratives or structures.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023
In a psychological sense, oppression can be felt by individuals who believe they are being unfairly treated or restricted. It's a feeling of being trapped or stifled by external forces. Suppression, in the realm of psychology, often refers to the conscious effort to keep unwanted or unpleasant thoughts, feelings, or memories out of one's conscious awareness.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023
In literature and arts, oppression often serves as a central theme highlighting societal issues and calling for change. It paints pictures of protagonists battling against larger, unjust systems. Suppression, in literature, can symbolize personal battles with one's inner demons or the broader society trying to censor or control narratives.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

Comparison Chart

Definition

Unjust treatment of groups.
Preventing or stopping an action or expression.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023
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Usage

Pertains to people/groups.
Can pertain to feelings, information, or actions.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Associated Feelings

Persecution, subjugation.
Silencing, quashing.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Contexts

Societal structures, discrimination.
Censorship, psychology (repressing emotions/thoughts).
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Primary Focus

Groups/individuals being treated unjustly due to imbalance.
Act of halting or controlling a particular activity or thought.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

Oppression and Suppression Definitions

Oppression

Prolonged cruel or unjust treatment.
The dictatorship's oppression lasted for decades.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023
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Suppression

Stopping or restraining the growth or spread of something.
The suppression of wildfires is essential for protecting communities.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Oppression

An unjust or excessive exercise of power.
Economic oppression often leads to uprisings and revolutions.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Suppression

Preventing public knowledge or awareness.
The suppression of vital information could jeopardize public health.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Oppression

A system where certain groups face unjust treatment or control.
The oppression of minority groups has been a significant concern throughout history.
Harlon Moss
Oct 04, 2023

Suppression

The act of ending or stopping something by force.
The government's suppression of free speech angered many citizens.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Oppression

The exercise of power in a burdensome, cruel, or unjust manner.
Oppression by the ruling elite led to widespread protests.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Suppression

Deliberate exclusion of feelings or thoughts.
Emotional suppression can lead to psychological stress.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

Oppression

The action of oppressing; arbitrary and cruel exercise of power
A system of oppression.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

Halting or inhibiting a particular action or activity.
The suppression of illegal trade is a focus for law enforcement agencies.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Oppression

The state of being oppressed
Caught in the oppression of poverty.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

The act of suppressing.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

A feeling of being weighed down in mind or body
"Every time I entered my house, an oppression settled on me so heavy that I had to stand for minutes at a time in the doorway, gathering what strength I could find" (Erin McGraw). "One has ... to come under the shadow of war to feel fully its oppression" (J.R.R. Tolkien).
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

The state of being suppressed.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

The exercise of authority or power in a burdensome, cruel, or unjust manner.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

(Psychiatry) Conscious exclusion of unacceptable desires, thoughts, or memories from the mind.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

The act of oppressing, or the state of being oppressed.
Extreme freedom is followed by extreme oppression, said Plato.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

(Botany) The failure of an organ or part to develop.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

A feeling of being oppressed.
Our oppression was lifted by the reappearance of the sun.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

(Genetics) The inhibition of gene expression.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

The act of oppressing, or state of being oppressed.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

The act or instance of suppressing.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

That which oppresses; a hardship or injustice; cruelty; severity; tyranny.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

The state of being suppressed.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

A sense of heaviness or obstruction in the body or mind; depression; dullness; lassitude; as, an oppression of spirits; an oppression of the lungs.
There gentle SleepFirst found me, and with soft oppression seizedMy drowsed sense.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

(psychology) A process in which a person consciously excludes anxiety-producing thoughts, feelings, or memories.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

Ravishment; rape.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

(military) The entirety of acts aimed at stopping or preventing the enemy to execute such unwanted activities like firing, regrouping, observation or others.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

The act of subjugating by cruelty;
The tyrant's oppression of the people
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

(of an eye) A subconscious adaptation by a person's brain to eliminate the symptoms of disorders of binocular vision such as strabismus, convergence insufficiency and aniseikonia.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

The state of being kept down by unjust use of force or authority:
After years of oppression they finally revolted
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

The act of suppressing, or the state of being suppressed; repression; as, the suppression of a riot, insurrection, or tumult; the suppression of truth, of reports, of evidence, and the like.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

A feeling of being oppressed
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

Complete stoppage of a natural secretion or excretion; as, suppression of urine; - used in contradiction to retention, which signifies that the secretion or excretion is retained without expulsion.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Oppression

The feeling of being weighed down or held back by severe and unfair force.
She felt oppression from societal expectations about her role as a woman.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

Suppression

Omission; as, the suppression of a word.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

(botany) the failure to develop of some part or organ of a plant
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

The act of withholding or withdrawing some book or writing from publication or circulation;
A suppression of the newspaper
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

Forceful prevention; putting down by power or authority;
The suppression of heresy
The quelling of the rebellion
The stifling of all dissent
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

Suppression

(psychology) the conscious exclusion of unacceptable thoughts or desires
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 25, 2022

FAQs

Can individuals feel oppressed?

Yes, individuals can feel oppressed due to external factors or societal expectations.
Harlon Moss
Oct 04, 2023

Is suppression only related to actions?

No, suppression can relate to actions, feelings, and information.
Harlon Moss
Oct 04, 2023

What might be a cause for suppression in psychological terms?

Trauma, societal expectations, or negative experiences can cause individuals to suppress certain feelings or memories.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

How does oppression manifest in society?

Through discriminatory laws, societal norms, or imbalances in opportunities and rights for certain groups.
Harlon Moss
Oct 04, 2023

What's a primary context where oppression is discussed?

Oppression is frequently discussed in the context of human rights and societal structures.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Can suppression refer to emotions?

Yes, suppression can refer to the conscious act of excluding unwanted feelings or thoughts.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Is oppression always intentional?

Oppression can be both intentional and a result of systemic or structural imbalances.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Does suppression always have a negative connotation?

Not always. Suppression can be seen as negative when discussing freedom, but can be positive in contexts like suppressing a fire or disease.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

Is suppressing information the same as censoring it?

While similar, suppression often means preventing information from becoming public, while censorship involves removing or altering already public information.
Janet White
Oct 04, 2023

Is oppression always overt?

No, oppression can be both overt (clearly noticeable) and covert (hidden or not obvious).
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

Can suppression be voluntary?

Yes, individuals might choose to suppress certain thoughts or emotions intentionally.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Can suppression occur in nature?

In metaphorical terms, yes. For instance, one might talk about the suppression of plant growth due to unfavorable conditions.
Janet White
Oct 04, 2023

Does suppression imply intent?

Generally, yes. Suppression often involves a deliberate act to halt, control, or exclude something.
Janet White
Oct 04, 2023

Can suppression be a form of oppression?

Yes, if suppression is used as a tool by those in power to control or silence others, it becomes a form of oppression.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

How does oppression relate to power dynamics?

Oppression often results from an imbalance of power, where one group exerts dominance over another.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Can oppression exist without an oppressor?

While typically involving an oppressor, systemic oppression can exist due to ingrained societal structures, not just a singular entity.
Janet White
Oct 04, 2023

What emotions are typically associated with oppression?

Feelings of subjugation, persecution, and powerlessness.
Harlon Moss
Oct 04, 2023

How might suppression appear in a political context?

In the form of censoring opposing views, controlling information flow, or silencing dissent.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

Is there a relation between oppression and suppression?

While distinct, the two can intersect, such as when oppressive systems suppress dissenting voices or information.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

How do literature and arts represent oppression?

Through narratives highlighting battles against unjust systems, marginalized voices, and calls for change.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023
About Author
Written by
Sawaira Riaz
Sawaira is a dedicated content editor at difference.wiki, where she meticulously refines articles to ensure clarity and accuracy. With a keen eye for detail, she upholds the site's commitment to delivering insightful and precise content.
Edited by
Huma Saeed
Huma is a renowned researcher acclaimed for her innovative work in Difference Wiki. Her dedication has led to key breakthroughs, establishing her prominence in academia. Her contributions continually inspire and guide her field.

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