com·​mu·​nal·​ism | \ kə-ˈmyü-nə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce communalism (audio) \

Definition of communalism

1 : social organization on a communal basis
2 : loyalty to a sociopolitical grouping based on religious or ethnic affiliation

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Other Words from communalism

communalist \ kə-​ˈmyü-​nə-​list How to pronounce communalist (audio) \ noun or adjective

Examples of communalism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web One based on values of communalism, kindness, and generosity. Leora Smith, Longreads, "The God Phone," 10 Aug. 2020 When the American dream is framed as independence rather than communalism, the benefits of city life start to seem like detriments instead. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, "Revenge of the Suburbs," 19 June 2020 Societal structures shaped by oppressive structural forces of casteism, classism, communalism, elitism, and patriarchy render a certain section vulnerable. Anup Agarwal & Yogesh Jain, Quartz India, "India’s coronavirus response needs to address the question of social inequity," 29 Mar. 2020 To stem the tide, to prevent a swift decline into communalism and authoritarianism, the outrage seen on the streets will need to translate into a robust and organized political opposition. Madhav Khosla, Time, "The Battle for India's Founding Ideals," 6 Jan. 2020 While Owen and Maclure had grand visions for a society based on communalism, kindness, education, and equality, the community’s day-to-day life was a mess. Diana Budds, Curbed, "This small Indiana town is a hotbed of utopianism," 5 Aug. 2019 India’s courts are woefully backlogged, and rising communalism clashes – sometimes violently – with equally rising demands for individual rights. Howard Lafranchi, The Christian Science Monitor, "Global decline in democracy? The lesson from India may be 'Not so fast.'," 16 Mar. 2018 So why has this generation of stage, television and cinematic impresarios found new resonance in this old form of communalism? A. O. Scott, New York Times, "The Return of the Artistic Company," 18 Feb. 2018 Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party has injected a toxic communalism into the Indian body politic, creating the space for lynchings and other extra-judicial crimes to occur with alarming frequency. Amar Diwakar, New Republic, "India’s Murderous Turn From Democracy," 19 Sep. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'communalism.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of communalism

1897, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for communalism

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The first known use of communalism was in 1897

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Cite this Entry

“Communalism.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Dec. 2020.

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