pa·ro·chi·al·ism | \pə-ˈrō-kē-ə-ˌli-zəm \

Definition of parochialism 

: the quality or state of being parochial especially : selfish pettiness or narrowness (as of interests, opinions, or views)

Examples of parochialism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The measure passed Thursday bars alternates from participating in board or committee proceedings — a change proponents say is intended to streamline discussions, reduce parochialism, and increase the level of expertise among members of the panel. Martine Powers, Washington Post, "Pushed by Virginia lawmakers, Metro board agrees to internal restructuring," 28 June 2018 Let our cultural and ethnic diversity be a source of pride and strength, not parochialism and conflict. Jennifer Williams, Vox, "South Sudan’s civil war has raged for 5 years. Now the leaders of the two sides are meeting.," 20 June 2018 The answer lies in a story of self-interest and parochialism that has been kept quiet outside of political circles. Jonathan Lai,, "Pa. gerrymandering's surprise co-conspirators: Democrats," 29 Apr. 2018 On issues such as energy and transportation, geography and parochialism can trump party allegiance. Carl Hulse, New York Times, "Sharper State Divide in Congress Seen as ‘New Civil War’," 15 Jan. 2018 This caution is produced by a mixture of parochialism (few pupils master a foreign language at school) and superiority (universities at home are excellent). The Economist, "Expanding horizonsWhy more British students are choosing foreign universities," 15 Feb. 2018 Resurgent parochialism could gain even more momentum with the looming departure of the U.K., long one of the EU’s strongest single-market proponents. Valentina Pop, WSJ, "Globalization in Retreat | From German Faucets to Italian Chocolate, Trade Barriers Are Rising Again in Europe," 13 Dec. 2017 As a result, the European Union is having to grapple with rising parochialism and protectionism, tougher stances among member states on immigration, and growing opposition to the bloc’s free-trade ambitions. Valentina Pop, WSJ, "EU Struggles With Foibles of Coalition Governments," 19 Oct. 2017 Actually, Tod, your geezery parochialism is what’s wrong. Jeff Gordinier, Esquire, "The Best New Restaurants in America 2017," 18 Oct. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of parochialism

1847, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about parochialism

Share parochialism

Statistics for parochialism

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for parochialism

The first known use of parochialism was in 1847

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on parochialism

See words that rhyme with parochialism

Comments on parochialism

What made you want to look up parochialism? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


required by fashion, etiquette, or custom

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
True or False

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


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

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