Definition of self-governing in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌsɛlfˈɡʌv(ə)nɪŋ/


1Exercising control over one’s own affairs, in particular:
Example sentences
  • The AAUP has consistently held that academic freedom can be maintained only so long as faculty remain autonomous and self-governing.
  • The Athenians were free men because they were collectively self-governing, although they lacked personal independence and civil liberties, and were expected to sacrifice their pleasures for the sake of the polis.
  • Political thinkers imagined the American family as a factory specifically designed to turn out self-governing citizens - something quite different from what other kinds of families did.
self-legislating, self-determining
1.1(Of a British hospital or school) having opted out of local authority control.
Example sentences
  • Direct-grant schools were entirely self-governing and independent, but took pupils funded by the state.
  • Schools are now self-governing and what little is left to strategic planning is being hived off to Education Action Zones.
  • Staff at Princess Margaret Hospital have been rehearsing and refining their major incident plan since 1993, when the hospital became a self-governing trust.
1.2(Of a former colony or dependency) administering its own affairs.
Example sentences
  • Rapid economic development followed, the country becoming the crown colony of Southern Rhodesia in 1911 and a self-governing colony in 1923.
  • Greenland is classified as a self-governing dependency and has been ruled by Denmark since 1721.
  • How could a colony be self-governing and still part of the empire?
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