- The aggressive advancement of one's own opinions or wishes.
1869, Charles Dickens, David Copperfield:
- If his sweet-tempered wife could have got up any self-assertion against anyone, I am satisfied it could only have been because she was the Beauty’s sister.
1893, Thomas Huxley, Evolution and Ethics:
- In place of ruthless self-assertion it demands self-restraint; in place of thrusting aside, or treading down, all competitors, it requires that the individual shall not merely respect, but shall help his fellows; its influence is directed, not so much to the survival of the fittest, as to the fitting of as many as possible to survive.