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self-determination

[self-di-tur-muh-ney-shuh n, self-]
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noun
  1. determination by oneself or itself, without outside influence.
  2. freedom to live as one chooses, or to act or decide without consulting another or others.
  3. the determining by the people of the form their government shall have, without reference to the wishes of any other nation, especially by people of a territory or former colony.
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Origin of self-determination

1670–80; 1915–20 for def 3
Related formsself-de·ter·mined, adjectiveself-de·ter·min·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for self-determination

self-determination

noun
  1. the power or ability to make a decision for oneself without influence from outside
  2. the right of a nation or people to determine its own form of government without influence from outside
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Derived Formsself-determined, adjectiveself-determining, 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

Word Origin and History for self-determination

n.

1680s, "determination of mind," from self- + determination. Political sense is attested from 1911, popularized by U.S. President Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper