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[pey-tree-ahr-kee] /ˈpeɪ triˌɑr ki/
noun, plural patriarchies.
a form of social organization in which the father is the supreme authority in the family, clan, or tribe and descent is reckoned in the male line, with the children belonging to the father's clan or tribe.
a society, community, or country based on this social organization.
a social system in which power is held by men, through cultural norms and customs that favor men and withhold opportunity from women:
The corporate glass ceiling is one consequence of patriarchy in education and business.
(often initial capital letter) the men in power in a society (usually preceded by the):
The Patriarchy is vested in maintenance of the status quo.
Origin of patriarchy
From the Greek word patriarchía, dating back to 1555-65. See patriarch, -y3
Related forms
antipatriarchy, noun, plural antipatriarchies. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for anti-patriarchy


noun (pl) -chies
a form of social organization in which a male is the head of the family and descent, kinship, and title are traced through the male line
any society governed by such a system
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for anti-patriarchy



1560s, in ecclesiastical sense, from Greek patriarkhia, from patriarkhes (see patriarch). Meaning "system of society or government by fathers or elder males of the community" first recorded 1630s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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anti-patriarchy in Culture
patriarchy [(pay-tree-ahr-kee)]

A family or society in which authority is vested in males, through whom descent and inheritance are traced. (See also matriarchy and primogeniture.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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