Etymology
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colonialism (n.)

1853, "ways or speech of colonial persons," from colonial + -ism. Meaning "the system of colonial rule" is from 1884; originally not necessarily pejorative and suggestive of exploitation.

updated on January 22, 2018

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Definitions of colonialism from WordNet

colonialism (n.)
exploitation by a stronger country of weaker one; the use of the weaker country's resources to strengthen and enrich the stronger country;
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.