counterfactual counterfactual


  • (adj) going counter to the facts (usually as a hypothesis)


  1. Such ruminations are the purview of counterfactual history, the examination of alternative outcomes based on plausible historical scenarios.
  2. But we'll never know the counterfactual.
  3. To wax counterfactual, imagine Reagan had won the GOP's nomination in 1968.


  • Newsweek Dead, Everybody a Suspect

    Apportioning the blame for the death of Newsweek is a bit like assessing the counterfactual of what would happen if you resurrected the captain of the Titanic and put him in charge of with a central office in circa-2004 Iraq. The New York Times gives it a go , and it’s pretty clear that Newsweek was both utterly doomed and that Tina Brown’s herky-jerky, "party like it’s 1999" editing ...
    on August 5, 2013     Source: New York Magazine

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cynic cynic
/ˈsɪ nɪk /