Share this entry

Share this page

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

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day cumbersome
Pronunciation: ˈkʌmbəs(ə)m
adjective
large or heavy and therefore difficult to carry…