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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce impasse (audio)

Dictionary definition of impasse

A state of being in which a situation or dispute cannot be resolved or progressed any further.
"The negotiations have reached an impasse and no further progress can be made."

Detailed meaning of impasse

An impasse is It is a deadlock or a standstill, and can refer to a wide variety of situations, from negotiations and political disputes to personal conflicts and problems with no clear solution. In a negotiation, for example, an impasse might occur when two parties are unable to reach an agreement due to a fundamental disagreement or a lack of willingness to compromise. In a political context, an impasse might refer to a situation in which two or more branches of government are unable to pass legislation or make progress due to a lack of agreement. In personal conflicts, an impasse might occur when two people are unable to communicate effectively or reach a resolution to their differences. In any case, an impasse is characterized by a lack of progress or a stalemate and is often seen as a negative situation that needs to be resolved in order to move forward.

Example sentences containing impasse

1. The negotiations reached an impasse as neither party was willing to compromise.
2. The impasse in the contract talks led to a worker's strike.
3. The political deadlock resulted in an impasse, stalling progress on key legislation.
4. The dispute between the neighbors reached an impasse, requiring legal intervention.
5. Despite multiple attempts, the mediation efforts hit an impasse, and the case went to court.
6. The company is at an impasse as they cannot agree on a new business strategy.

History and etymology of impasse

The noun 'impasse' has its etymological origins in French. It is derived from the French word 'impasser,' which means 'to block' or 'to impede.' The term 'impasse' entered the English language with the same sense of obstruction or deadlock. It describes a state of being in which a situation or dispute cannot be resolved or progressed any further due to a lack of agreement or a standstill in the negotiation process. The word 'impasse' underscores the idea of being figuratively blocked or stopped in one's tracks, unable to move forward or find a solution. When we refer to an 'impasse' today, we are drawing on its French heritage to emphasize the notion of an insurmountable obstacle or a dead-end in a particular course of action or discussion.

Quiz: Find the meaning of impasse

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Further usage examples of impasse

1. The relationship has reached an impasse and they are considering a break-up.
2. The talks have reached an impasse and the parties involved are looking for a way to move forward.
3. He is at an impasse in his career and is unsure of what his next move should be.
4. They are at an impasse in their negotiations and are seeking mediation.
5. The project has reached an impasse due to a lack of funding.
6. The debate has reached an impasse as both sides refuse to compromise.
7. He is at an impasse in his studies as he can't decide on a major.
8. They are at an impasse in their relationship and are seeking counseling.
9. The situation has reached an impasse and both sides are looking for a solution.
10. The team is at an impasse and can't agree on a course of action.
11. Negotiations between the two nations reached an impasse, with neither side willing to compromise on key issues.
12. The protracted political debate seemed stuck in an impasse, as legislators struggled to find common ground.
13. The deadlock at the international conference created a frustrating impasse, preventing the adoption of crucial agreements.
14. The legal dispute between the companies appeared to be in an impasse, leading to mounting legal fees.
15. A communication breakdown within the team resulted in an impasse, hindering the project's progress.
16. The project team faced an impasse in their efforts to secure additional funding, causing delays.
17. The impasse in the contract negotiations required the involvement of a mediator to facilitate resolution.
18. The impasse in the traffic jam caused frustration among commuters, leading to long delays.
19. The impasse in trade negotiations had serious economic consequences, affecting global markets.
20. An impasse between close friends strained their relationship, leaving them feeling distant.
21. The impasse in the discussion over budget allocations necessitated revisiting financial priorities.
22. The impasse in diplomacy threatened to destabilize international relations, raising concerns among diplomats.
23. The impasse in the budget approval process delayed funding for critical public services, causing disruptions.
24. The impasse in the labor strike was taking a toll on the workers, who were growing increasingly frustrated.
25. An impasse in the peace talks heightened tensions in the conflict zone, escalating hostilities.
26. The impasse in the divorce proceedings was emotionally draining for both parties, prolonging their legal battle.
27. The impasse in the court case added stress to an already complicated legal situation, impacting all involved.
28. An impasse in the decision-making process within the organization hindered progress on important initiatives.
29. The impasse in the family dispute was straining relationships, causing divisions among relatives.
30. The impasse in the negotiations over the disputed territory was threatening to erupt into a full-blown conflict.



deadlock, resolution, agreement, breakthrough


Prefix im-, GRE 6 (Graduate Record Examination), Adversities and Complications, Crisis and Opposition, Turmoil and Treachery, Hostility and Dispute

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