V2 Vocabulary Building Dictionary



Definition: 1. to defend or make excuses for something; 2. apply reason or logic to something

Synonyms: justify, excuse, reason, think, clarify, explain, intellectualize

Antonyms: complicate, puzzle, confuse

Tips: The related adjective rational means "reasonable or logical." Thus, to rationalize something essentially means "to make it reasonable, to justify."

Usage Examples:

She didn't understand how anyone could rationalize such an extravagant purchase. (justify)

She tried to get her children to use logical problem solving when rationalizing answers to math questions. (reasoning, thinking through)

She could not rationalize why the club was so crowded; the band was horrible. (explain)

He tried to rationalize his behavior, but it was completey illogical and unjustifiable. (justify, clarify, explain)

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