(an) impasse


1. a situation in which progress cannot be made






Check Icon How to Memorize

reach an impasse

Check Icon Analysis

An impasse can come about due to a disagreement, an insurmountable difficulty, or the refusal of the people involved in something to compromise. While sometimes it can lead to something failing to progress any further, often an impasse is a temporary stumbling block that requires cooperation and thinking outside the box to overcome. It can be used in either a social or professional context, but is more common in the latter. Two similar terms are 'stumbling block,' and 'sticking point.'

Check Icon Social Examples (Advance)

  1. The current political impasse in the country is making governance impossible, and there appears to be no resolution in sight.

Check Icon Professional Examples (Advance)

  1. Negotiations between the two companies have reached an impasse as neither side are willing to budge on their demands.
  2. The impasse came to an end when both parties saw that a lack of agreement was hurting business.

Related Links