hegemony

noun
he·​ge·​mo·​ny | \hi-ˈje-mə-nē, -ˈge-;ˈhe-jə-ˌmō-nē \

Definition of hegemony 

1 : preponderant influence or authority over others : domination battled for hegemony in Asia

2 : the social, cultural, ideological, or economic influence exerted by a dominant group

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Other Words from hegemony

hegemonic \ˌhe-​jə-​ˈmä-​nik, ˌhe-​gə-​ \ adjective

Did You Know?

Hegemony comes to English from the Greek hēgemonia, a noun formed from the verb hēgeisthai ("to lead"), which also gave us the word exegesis ("exposition" or "explanation"). The word was first used in English in the mid-16th century in reference to the control once wielded by the ancient Greek states, and it was reapplied in later centuries as other nations subsequently rose to power. By the 20th century, it had acquired a second sense referring to the social or cultural influence wielded by a dominant member over others of its kind, such as the domination within an industry by a business conglomerate over smaller businesses.

Examples of hegemony in a Sentence

… the very concept of "scientific truth" can only represent a social construction invented by scientists (whether consciously or not) as a device to justify their hegemony over the study of nature. — Stephen Jay Gould, Science, 14 Jan. 2000 When Germany's invasion of the Soviet Union, in June of 1941, distracted Japan's traditional rival for hegemony in East Asia, Japanese expansionists saw a historic opportunity. — David M. Kennedy, Atlantic, March 1999 If mermaids had ceased to challenge scientific hegemony, other similarly mythological creatures rushed in to fill their places in Victorian hearts and minds. — Harriet Ritvo, The Platypus and the Mermaid, 1997 They discussed the national government's hegemony over their tribal community. European intellectuals have long debated the consequences of the hegemony of American popular culture around the world.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The United States, meanwhile, spends much more than 2 percent of GDP on the quest for global military hegemony. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "The $21 trillion Pentagon accounting error that can’t pay for Medicare-for-all, explained," 3 Dec. 2018 During a visit to New Caledonia in May, French President Emmanuel Macron warned of China’s growing hegemony in the region and called for a new strategic alliance between France, India and Australia. Rhiannon Hoyle, WSJ, "New Caledonians Vote No on Frexit, Will Maintain French Connection," 4 Nov. 2018 But the country is now seriously facing the prospect that even if Republican hegemony is broken in the 2018 and 2020 elections, the entrenched five-vote Republican majority will sharply circumscribe their ability to govern. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation will delegitimize the Supreme Court — and that’s good," 5 Oct. 2018 Only English, which serves a smaller but more affluent demographic, acts as a check on Hindi hegemony. Sadanand Dhume, WSJ, "For India, English Is a Cure, Not a Sickness," 20 Sep. 2018 New York was closed to most ambitious Jewish people for generations, but in the late ’70s, when the city was falling apart, part of what was falling away was the old WASP establishment, the hegemony that kept everyone else from succeeding. Julia Felsenthal, Vogue, "Matt Tyrnauer’s New Documentary, Studio 54, Takes On the Rise, Fall, and Last Days of Disco," 4 Oct. 2018 But hosting the world's largest sporting event appears to have renewed Russians' sense that the pursuit of hegemony is justified. Amie Ferris-rotman, Washington Post, "For the World Cup, the Russian people are all in, win or lose," 25 June 2018 If Trump is behaving like a Roman emperor, what does that say about the state of the American empire, the informal hegemony that the United States has enjoyed since 1945? Jeet Heer, The New Republic, "Are We Witnessing the Fall of the American Empire?," 7 Mar. 2018 In the Middle East, Putin stands for an alternative to American hegemony, transcending sectarian divisions. Washington Post, "How the Kremlin turned the Russian president into a global icon," 12 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hegemony.' 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 hegemony

1567, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hegemony

Greek hēgemonia, from hēgemōn leader, from hēgeisthai to lead — more at seek

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Dictionary Entries near hegemony

Hegelism

hegemon

hegemonistic

hegemony

hegira

hegumen

heh

Statistics for hegemony

Last Updated

12 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for hegemony

The first known use of hegemony was in 1567

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More Definitions for hegemony

hegemony

noun

English Language Learners Definition of hegemony

: influence or control over another country, a group of people, etc.

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More from Merriam-Webster on hegemony

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hegemony

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hegemony

Spanish Central: Translation of hegemony

Nglish: Translation of hegemony for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hegemony for Arabic Speakers

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