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How to pronounce cronyism (audio)


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Dictionary definition of cronyism

The practice of showing favoritism to friends, family members, or associates in business or political contexts.
"He was accused of cronyism for appointing his friends to high-level positions."

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Detailed meaning of cronyism

This can involve giving them preferential treatment, such as giving them jobs or contracts without a fair and open selection process, or protecting them from disciplinary action or negative consequences. Cronyism is often viewed as unethical or corrupt, as it undermines the principles of meritocracy and fair competition. The term "cronyism" is derived from the word "crony" which means a close friend or associate. Cronyism is often associated with politicians who award government contracts to their friends and allies, or with business leaders who use their influence to help their friends and associates.

Example sentences containing cronyism

1. The prevalence of cronyism in the company led to a lack of diversity and talent.
2. Despite his incompetence, he attained a high-ranking position through cronyism.
3. The government's policies were influenced by cronyism, favoring a select few.
4. The CEO's cronyism resulted in the promotion of unqualified individuals.
5. The negative effects of cronyism were evident in the company's declining performance.
6. The public grew disillusioned with the government due to its cronyism and corruption.

History and etymology of cronyism

The noun 'cronyism' has its roots in 19th-century America. It is believed to have originated in the United States during the era of Andrew Jackson's presidency in the 1830s. The term 'crony' is a colloquial variation of the word 'chronic,' which means a long-lasting friend or companion. 'Cronyism' emerged as a way to describe the practice of showing favoritism to one's long-standing friends, associates, or close companions in business or political contexts. It implies that individuals in positions of power or authority are giving preferential treatment to those with whom they share personal relationships, often at the expense of fairness or meritocracy. 'Cronyism' thus denotes a form of nepotism or favoritism rooted in personal connections rather than qualifications or competence, and it continues to be used to critique such practices in various spheres of life.

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Further usage examples of cronyism

1. The business sector suffered from cronyism, hindering fair competition.
2. Many deserving candidates were overlooked due to cronyism within the organization.
3. The prevalence of cronyism eroded trust in the political system.
4. Cronyism within the judicial system compromised the integrity of the courts.
5. The company's cronyism culture created a toxic work environment.
6. The politician's cronyism resulted in misallocation of resources.
7. The consequences of cronyism were felt by the ordinary citizens who lacked opportunities.
8. Cronyism undermined the principles of meritocracy and fairness.
9. The organization's cronyism stifled innovation and creativity.
10. The media exposed the government's cronyism, leading to public outrage.
11. The educational institutions faced criticism for their cronyism in admissions and hiring.
12. Cronyism perpetuated a cycle of privilege and exclusion in society.
13. The public demanded reforms to eliminate cronyism and promote transparency.
14. The detrimental effects of cronyism were felt across various sectors of the economy.



nepotism, meritocracy, fairness, impartiality


Suffix -ism, SAT 12 (Scholastic Assessment Test), Discipline and Self-Control, Prejudice and Bias

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