drug pushing / dealing


Senior Member
Persian - 𐎱𐎾𐎿𐎡

English Vocabulary in Use book


Isn't there any difference between drug dealing / drug pushing?
  • Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    Here's my take:

    A pusher has direct contact with the consumer; it's the retail trade, if you like.
    A dealer may do this, or may be involved only in import-export or distribution. The wholesale trade.

    But I don't know if this is a real legal distinction. It is a minority interest, after all.


    Senior Member
    English - England
    The general rule is "If the word or phrase is different, then the meaning, or at least the nuance, is different."

    To push (something [on[to] someone]) informal-> to urge someone to have or buy something: "I wanted to buy a cheap washing machine but the salesman tried to push an expensive one on to me.

    To deal
    - to buy and sell.


    Senior Member
    American English (New England and NYC)
    I agree with PaulQ that there is a difference between 'pushing' and 'dealing' generally, but in terms of casual speech drug dealers operate at the consumer level as well as the large-scale wholesale level in the US today.

    In the US 'drug dealer' is much more common now than 'drug pusher,' although according to this Google Ngram the use of 'drug pusher' and 'drug dealer' in printed sources was about equal in the 1970s.