catch-22

noun informal
From Joseph Heller's novel "Catch-22", set in World War II. 1. A regulation or situation that is self-contradictory or that conflicts with another regulation. In Heller's book it referred to the regulation that flight crews must report for duty unless excused for reasons of insanity, but that any one claiming such an excuse must, by definition, be sane.

Government rules require workers to expose any wrongdoing in their office, but the Catch-22 prevents them from their doing so, because they are not allowed to disclose any information about their work.

2. A paradoxical situation.

The Catch-22 of job-hunting was that the factory wanted to hire only workers who had experience making computers but the only way to get the experience was by working at the computer factory.


Словарь американских идиом. — СПб., Изд-во "Лань". . 1997.

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  • catch — [ katʃ ] n. m. • 1919; mot angl., abrév. de catch as catch can « attrape comme tu peux » ♦ Lutte très libre à l origine, codifiée aujourd hui. Prise de catch. Match, rencontre de catch, spectacle de cette lutte. Catch à quatre. Catch féminin. ●… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Catch — Catch, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Caught}or {Catched}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Catching}. Catched is rarely used.] [OE. cacchen, OF. cachier, dialectic form of chacier to hunt, F. chasser, fr. (assumend) LL. captiare, for L. capture, V. intens. of capere to… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • catch — [kach, kech] vt. caught, catching [ME cacchen < Anglo Fr cachier < VL * captiare < L captare, to seize < pp. of capere, to take hold: see HAVE] 1. to seize and hold, as after a chase; capture 2. to seize or take by or as by a trap,… …   English World dictionary

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  • catch — ► VERB (past and past part. caught) 1) intercept and hold (something thrown, propelled, or dropped). 2) seize or take hold of. 3) capture after a chase or in a trap, net, etc. 4) be in time to board (a train, bus, etc.) or to see (a person,… …   English terms dictionary

  • Catch-22 — ist der Titel des 1961 erschienenen ersten Romans von Joseph Heller über die Absurdität des Krieges und die Dummheit der Militär Maschinerie. Das anfangs wenig erfolgreiche Buch wurde erst durch Mundpropaganda und Weitergabe und Empfehlung des… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • Catch — Catch, n. 1. Act of seizing; a grasp. Sir P. Sidney. [1913 Webster] 2. That by which anything is caught or temporarily fastened; as, the catch of a gate. [1913 Webster] 3. The posture of seizing; a state of preparation to lay hold of, or of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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