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In a word: Hegemony

Each week The Sun's John McIntyre presents a moderately obscure but evocative word with which you may not be familiar — another brick to add to the wall of your working vocabulary. This week's word:

HEGEMONY

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A word your are most likely to encounter in articles about politics, particularly international politics,

hegemony

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(pronounced huh-JEM-oh-nee) refers to one country's or social groups' dominance over others — the kind of word you expect to see in an article by Noam Chomsky or a formal statement of the People's Republic of China. We get it in English from the Greek

hegemonia

, which in turn comes from

hegemon

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, "leader."

Hegemon

has been naturalized into English to identify the party that holds sway over the others.

Example: "The basic principle is that hegemony is more important than survival. Hardly novel, the principle has been amply illustrated in the past half-century." From "Hegemony or Survival: America's Quest for Global Dominance" by Noam Chomsky. (See?)

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