Dictionary.com

make-work

[ meyk-wurk ]
/ ˈmeɪkˌwɜrk /
Save This Word!

noun
work, usually of little importance, created to keep a person from being idle or unemployed.
QUIZ
QUIZ YOURSELF ON "IS" VS. "ARE"
"Is" it time for a new quiz? "Are" you ready? Then prove your excellent skills on using "is" vs. "are."
Question 1 of 7
IS and ARE are both forms of which verb?

Origin of make-work

1935–40, Americanism; noun use of verb phrase make work
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use make-work in a sentence

Cultural definitions for make-work

make-work

Publicly provided employment that is designed primarily to relieve unemployment and only incidentally to accomplish important tasks. If private employers are hiring few people because of a business slump, the government can “make work” for people to do.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
FEEDBACK