Obstinacy is the quality of firmly sticking to your own viewpoint or desires. If you’ve ever watched a persistent two-year-old who wants something she’s been denied, you’ve witnessed obstinacy at its purest.

Adults show obstinacy too of course, when they refuse to be moved or change their mind. Obstinacy can also refer to a situation or trait that is hard to overcome, as in the obstinacy of a physics problem that will not be solved or molasses that will not be stirred. Obstinacy is a noun for obstinate behavior — it can also be called bullheadedness, pigheadedness, willfulness, and plain old stubbornness.

Definitions of obstinacy
  1. noun
    resolute adherence to your own ideas or desires
    synonyms: bullheadedness, obstinance, pigheadedness, self-will, stubbornness
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    impenitence, impenitency
    the trait of refusing to repent
    intransigence, intransigency
    the trait of being intransigent; stubbornly refusing to compromise
    type of:
    firmness, firmness of purpose, resoluteness, resolution, resolve
    the trait of being resolute
  2. noun
    the trait of being difficult to handle or overcome
    synonyms: mulishness, obstinance, stubbornness
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    type of:
    intractability, intractableness
    the trait of being hard to influence or control
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