1. the profiteering real-estate practice of buying homes from white majority homeowners below market value, based on the implied threat of future devaluation during minority integration of previously segregated neighborhoods.

Origin of blockbusting

First recorded in 1940–45; block + bust2 + -ing1


verb (used with or without object)
  1. to subject or be subjected to blockbusting: Developers blockbusted in order to buy up the entire area.

Origin of blockbust

Americanism; by back formation from blockbuster or blockbusting Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for blockbusting

Historical Examples of blockbusting

  • He didn't speak English and my high school German was inadequate, especially accompanied by a blockbusting hangover.

    Unborn Tomorrow

    Dallas McCord Reynolds

British Dictionary definitions for blockbusting


  1. US informal the act or practice of inducing the sale of property cheaply by exploiting the owners' fears of lower prices if racial minorities live in the area
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012