Definition of autarky in US English:


(also autarchy)


  • 1Economic independence or self-sufficiency.

    ‘rural community autarchy is a Utopian dream’
    • ‘However, ‘de-linking’ is not about running away from the rest of the world nor is it about autarky.’
    • ‘If you want to abandon internationally determined market prices, it means a return to autarky with governments determining the price of domestic crude oil and refined petroleum products.’
    • ‘And while the distribution of that prosperity is often unequal and unjust, it's hard to see how a retreat to autarchy would make it any less unjust.’
    • ‘It aims at war because it wants autarky - because it wants to live in economic self-sufficiency.’
    • ‘The push to restrict people's opportunities to buy and sell based on region is an attempt to bring about what economists call autarky, or economic self-sufficiency.’
    • ‘Rapid economic growth fueled by foreign credits gradually gave way to economic autarchy accompanied by wrenching austerity and severe political repression.’
    • ‘Finally, in the period of Spanish economic autarchy, trams went into steep decline.’
    • ‘The unity they desired was one based upon conquest, political subordination, and economic autarky.’
    • ‘Franco imposed a policy of economic self-sufficiency or autarky.’
    • ‘Self-reliance and autarchy are discarded options in today's world, be it for tackling terrorism or underdevelopment.’
    • ‘The fact is, what collapsed in the Soviet Union was not socialism but the Stalinist system of national economic autarchy.’
    • ‘Economic historians have long known that a key plank of Nazi economic policy was autarky.’
    • ‘He pledged the government would take ‘an active role in globalization,’ acknowledging that China, one of the world's most trade-dependent countries, cannot return to the days of economic autarchy.’
    • ‘The costs of farming obliged farmers to abandon mixed farming and autarky for market orientation and specialization.’
    • ‘The collapse of the Soviet Union - the most extreme example of a program of economic autarky - was itself a product of the growing pressures of world capitalism.’
    • ‘For almost 50 years, our country followed the policy of autarky.’
    • ‘Then the classical economists pointed out that living in autarky is not very productive.’
    • ‘Fast track may well be dead, but nobody should take that to mean that the U.S. is going to retreat into autarky.’
    • ‘He has tried to retreat into national economic autarky, with disastrous results.’
    • ‘We are free to disagree over foreign investment: I do not advocate autarchy.’
    independence, self-reliance, self-support, self-sustenance, self-standing
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    1. 1.1 A country, state, or society which is economically independent.
      • ‘During the Cold War, these ideas had encouraged the first generation of leaders of the newly independent colonies, and their colleagues in Latin America, to build statist autarkies.’
      • ‘Trotsky fought for a faster tempo of industrial growth in order to counter this pressure, while at the same time he rejected the conception of an economic autarky.’


Early 17th century: from Greek autarkeia, from autarkēs ‘self-sufficiency’, from autos ‘self’ + arkein ‘suffice’.