nationalism

noun
na·​tion·​al·​ism | \ ˈnash-nə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce nationalism (audio) , ˈna-shə-nə-ˌli-zəm\

Definition of nationalism

1 : loyalty and devotion to a nation especially : a sense of national consciousness (see consciousness sense 1c) exalting one nation above all others and placing primary emphasis on promotion of its culture and interests as opposed to those of other nations or supranational groups Intense nationalism was one of the causes of the war.
2 : a nationalist movement or government opposing nationalisms

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The Difference Between Nationalism, Patriotism, Sectionalism, and Jingoism

Nationalism has a number of near-synonyms, each of which carries its own distinct meaning. Patriotism is similar insofar as it emphasizes strong feelings for one’s country, but it does not necessarily imply an attitude of superiority. Sectionalism resembles nationalism in its suggestion of a geopolitical group pursuing its self-interest, but the group in question is usually smaller than an entire nation. Jingoism closely resembles nationalism in suggesting feelings of cultural superiority, but unlike nationalism, it always implies military aggressiveness.

Examples of nationalism in a Sentence

The war was caused by nationalism and greed. Nazism's almost epic nationalism appealed to downtrodden Germans still suffering the humiliation of being defeated in World War I.

Recent Examples on the Web

The Crusades myth always contained a noxious seed—inspiration for white nationalism—that has flourished in recent years. Josephine Livingstone, The New Republic, "Who Owns the Crusades?," 11 June 2019 Today, nationalism, xenophobia, trade barriers and just plain hate — all the elements that produced World War II — once again dominate global politics. Jeffrey A. Engel, Twin Cities, "Jeffrey Engel: The lesson of D-Day for Americans today," 6 June 2019 YouTube’s changes follow moves from Facebook to prohibit not only white supremacy, but also white nationalism and white separatism. Rachel Lerman, The Denver Post, "YouTube updates hate speech guidelines to prohibit white supremacy videos," 5 June 2019 There is a tendency to frame the rise of Buddhist nationalism as an anomalous phenomenon. Amar Diwakar, The New Republic, "Saffron Curtain: How Buddhism Was Weaponized During the Cold War," 23 Mar. 2018 And by turning their backs on the international community more broadly—fanning flames of xenophobic nationalism at home—their soft power will have waned, as well. David Adler, New Republic, "Right-Wing Populism Can’t Fix Globalization," 21 Feb. 2018 The crises involved players for several teams and touched on a range of topics: Kosovar independence, Serbian nationalism, a beloved Egyptian striker and a controversial Chechen leader. James Montague, New York Times, "Politics Ensnare Mohamed Salah and Switzerland at the World Cup," 24 June 2018 The divergent paths of Ireland and Poland show the bifurcating direction of the Catholic church in Europe, as its clergy on the continent seek to ride turbulent tides of secularism, nationalism, and the shifting focus of the Church itself. Francis X. Rocca, WSJ, "On Abortion Rights, Ireland Has Mirror Image in Conservative Poland," 28 May 2018 The alternative is appealing to voters’ bigotry, populist nationalism, and irrational fear. Ruth Margalit, The New Yorker, "The Mail," 11 May 2018

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

1798, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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More Definitions for nationalism

nationalism

noun

English Language Learners Definition of nationalism

: a feeling that people have of being loyal to and proud of their country often with the belief that it is better and more important than other countries
: a desire by a large group of people (such as people who share the same culture, history, language, etc.) to form a separate and independent nation of their own

nationalism

noun
na·​tion·​al·​ism | \ ˈna-shə-nə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce nationalism (audio) \

Kids Definition of nationalism

: devotion to the interests of a certain country and belief that it is better and more important than other countries

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