Definition of Paternalism

1. Noun. The attitude (of a person or a government) that subordinates should be controlled in a fatherly way for their own good.

Category relationships: Administration, Governance, Governing, Government, Government Activity
Generic synonyms: Attitude, Mental Attitude
Derivative terms: Paternalistic

Definition of Paternalism

1. n. The theory or practice of paternal government. See Paternal government, under Paternal.

Definition of Paternalism

1. Noun. the treatment of people in a fatherly manner, especially by caring for them but sometimes being stern with them ¹

¹ Source:

Definition of Paternalism

1. [n -S]

Lexicographical Neighbors of Paternalism

paternal exposure
paternal filicide
paternal grandchild
paternal grandfather
paternal grandfathers
paternal grandmother
paternal grandmothers
paternal quality
paternal uncle
paternal uncles
paternalism (current term)
paternity leave

Literary usage of Paternalism

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. What's So and what Isn't by John McClelland Work (1916)
"paternalism No, Socialism is not paternalism. Capitalism is paternalism. We have had paternalism for many centuries and we have it now. ..."

2. Modern Socialism by Charles Henry Vail (1897)
"As TO SOCIALISM AND paternalism. Socialism and paternalism are often confounded. A paternal government is one in which the people have nothing to say,—a ..."

3. A Handbook of Socialism: A Statement of Socialism in Its Various Aspects by William Dwight Porter Bliss (1895)
"(a) SOCIALISM is NOT GOVERNMENTALISM OR paternalism. IN not one of the definitions ... To call paternalism Socialism is, therefore, hopelessly to confuse. ..."

4. The Equilibration of Human Aptitudes and Powers of Adaptation by Cyrenus Osborne Ward (1895)
"... —How Slavery Originated—paternalism and human Slavery —What Originally Instigated It—Old Jurists Quoted—How Governments Extend paternalism to Courtiers ..."

5. Human Engineering: A Study of the Management of Human Forces in Industry by Eugene Wera (1921)
"paternalism.—At first, the growing social unrest awoke among the masters a vague ... Then began the period of paternalism, actually a system of compromises, ..."

6. The History of North America by Guy Carleton Lee (1905)
"It is in the ever-present paternalism that we find the true explanation of the tardy economic development of New France, just as in the comparative absence ..."

7. The Constitution of the United States: A Critical Discussion of Its Genesis by John Randolph Tucker, Henry St. George Tucker (1899)
"The two rival theories of government may therefore be described as follows: The polity of individualism and the polity of paternalism. ..."

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