pa·​tri·​ar·​chal | \ ˌpā-trē-ˈär-kəl How to pronounce patriarchal (audio) \

Definition of patriarchal

: of, relating to, or being a patriarch or patriarchy a patriarchal culture a patriarchal religion

Examples of patriarchal in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The art world was one of the creative forces fueling the disruption, embracing the practice of female activism, trying to break the patriarchal hold on art, and tackling cultural inequality. Tiziana Cardini, Vogue, "In Milan, A New Exhibition Celebrates Italian Feminist Artists of the 1970s," 5 Apr. 2019 In a dominant patriarchal society with heavy Catholic influence, Mexico’s women were expected to follow traditional gender roles. Teen Vogue, "The Real History of Las Soldaderas, the Women Who Made the Mexican Revolution Possible," 12 Mar. 2019 In our complex and patriarchal society, of course, things are rarely that black and white. Andrea Bartz, Marie Claire, "Sometimes I Exploit My Sexuality and I'm Not Sorry," 25 Feb. 2019 So the bad news is that the medical research community is, like a lot of society, patriarchal and neglectful of women’s needs. Sophie Saint Thomas, Marie Claire, "7 Myths About the G-Spot You Should Stop Believing Right Now," 26 Sep. 2018 This patriarchal vision of society was reinforced during colonialism, under German and Belgian rule until Independence in 1961, in particular under the influence of the Catholic Church. Caterina Clerici & Eléonore Hamelin, Marie Claire, "Rwanda's Future Is Female," 1 Feb. 2019 Unfortunately this humor dilutes his more serious observations of patriarchal culture and makes the women's mission to overthrow it seem almost a joke. Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader, "Lesbian revolutionaries smash sexual taboos to undermine the patriarchy in Bruce LaBruce's The Misandrists," 6 July 2018 From the terminology down to the culture, football, with its macho ethos and often militaristic structure is inescapably patriarchal. Jayda Evans, The Seattle Times, "A battle for respect, then in the trenches: For Newport’s Jenna Martz, football is feminism," 26 Oct. 2018 By examining their own experiences in a largely patriarchal world, the women laid bare everyday indignities, like being forced do most of the housework, as well as cultural myths and falsehoods about female sexuality. Stacy Cowley,, "Anne Forer Pyne, a Feminist Who Opened Eyes, Dies at 72," 31 Mar. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

8 May 2019

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The first known use of patriarchal was in the 15th century

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using a distributed computer network

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