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divide and conquer (or rule)

Definition of divide and conquer or rule in English:

The policy of maintaining control over one’s subordinates or subjects by encouraging dissent between them.
Example sentences
  • The partition plan flowed from Britain's policy of divide and rule.
  • It was playing the old bosses' game of divide and rule to prevent workers' full power being unleashed.
  • As a result of early colonial policies of divide and conquer, the regional governments tended to be drawn along ethnic lines.
See parent entry: divide
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