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[per-tik-yuh-luh-riz-uh m, puh-tik-] /pərˈtɪk yə ləˌrɪz əm, pəˈtɪk-/
exclusive attention or devotion to one's own particular interests, party, etc.
the principle of leaving each state of a federation free to retain its laws and promote its interests.
Theology. the doctrine that divine grace is provided only for the elect.
Origin of particularism
1815-25; < French particularisme. See particular, -ism
Related forms
particularist, noun
particularistic, adjective
particularistically, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for particularistic
Historical Examples
  • On the other hand, it was Webster who, at this time, appeared narrow and particularistic.

    The Middle Period 1817-1858 John William Burgess
  • Without the State, the particularistic, private side of man's nature would have free sway to express itself.

    Ethics John Dewey and James Hayden Tufts
  • Why did their polity not break up into a wilderness of tiny social groups, each jealous and particularistic, like medieval Europe?

    Government in Republican China Paul Myron Anthony Linebarger
  • An immigrant, Hamilton had no particularistic ties; he was by instinct a “continentalist” or federalist.

British Dictionary definitions for particularistic


exclusive attachment to the interests of one group, class, sect, etc, esp at the expense of the community as a whole
the principle of permitting each state or minority in a federation the right to further its own interests or retain its own laws, traditions, etc
(theol) the doctrine that divine grace is restricted to the elect
Derived Forms
particularist, noun, adjective
particularistic, adjective
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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