ethnocentric

adjective
eth·​no·​cen·​tric | \ ˌeth-nō-ˈsen-trik How to pronounce ethnocentric (audio) \

Definition of ethnocentric

: characterized by or based on the attitude that one's own group is superior

Other Words from ethnocentric

ethnocentricity \ ˌeth-​nō-​sen-​ˈtri-​sə-​tē How to pronounce ethnocentric (audio) \ noun

Did you know?

The Greek word ethnos means "nation" or "people". So ethnocentricity shows itself in a lack of respect for other ways of life, and an ethnocentric person feels that his or her own nation or group is the cultural center of the world. Ethnocentric describes the kind of person who behaves badly when traveling in foreign countries, often called an "Ugly American" (from a book and movie of the same name). Whenever you hear someone making fun of the way a foreigner speaks English, just remember that it's the foreigner, not the person laughing at him, who actually can speak a foreign language.

Examples of ethnocentric in a Sentence

The review was criticized for its ethnocentric bias.
Recent Examples on the Web Hanging over the search for a native speaker is all the ethnocentric baggage that the concept implies. Julian Lucas, The New Yorker, 21 Feb. 2022 Fifty years later, international businesses still behave in a very ethnocentric manner. Shaheena Janjuha-jivraj, Forbes, 28 Sep. 2021 My American upbringing had steered me to a pretty ethnocentric assumption: that in a totalitarian government, defiance would exhibit itself as bluntly and topically as in the United States, just with additional concealment. Stacey Anderson, Rolling Stone, 24 June 2021 Netflix’s Lupin, a Black French series about an international cat-burglar, a non-ethnocentric character, had 75 million viewers globally in its first month of airing. Court Stroud, Forbes, 3 June 2021 Plus, if applied with suitable leverage and departmental support, this is a force strong enough to counterbalance the historical tendency toward anthropocentric and ethnocentric approaches that tend to advantage narrow learner self-interest. Amandeep Midha, Forbes, 18 May 2021 To say that feminism is like Nazism is to say feminism is murderous, is ethnocentric violence. Alexa Mikhail, USA TODAY, 19 Feb. 2021 Then the state department of education put forward a model curriculum so extreme and ethnocentric that the state Senate’s Democratic supermajority balked. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 30 Aug. 2020 Launched in late 2013, the Vox party campaigns from an ethnocentric platform and has proposed building a wall to keep out Moroccans. Diana Spechler, Washington Post, 17 Dec. 2019 See More

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

First Known Use of ethnocentric

1891, in the meaning defined above

Learn More About ethnocentric

Time Traveler for ethnocentric

Time Traveler

The first known use of ethnocentric was in 1891

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near ethnocentric

ethnobotany

ethnocentric

ethnocentrism

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for ethnocentric

Cite this Entry

“Ethnocentric.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ethnocentric. Accessed 20 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on ethnocentric

Britannica English: Translation of ethnocentric for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Name That Color

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!