Definition of heartland in US English:



  • 1The central or most important part of a country, area, or field of activity.

    • ‘During the prime of the Roman Republic, roughly the last two centuries B.C., it served as a northern boundary protecting the heartland of Italy and the city of Rome from its own imperial armies.’
    • ‘The 2003 challenge in areas ranging from urban heartlands to rural outposts attracted record entries of almost 100.’
    • ‘It could mean only one thing: that the forces of the revolution were going for another big push, in the hope of bursting through the strong Army lines of the region and storming the heartlands of Trace.’
    • ‘How did a former potato field in the English heartland come to be the site of four of the past five European Ryder Cups?’
    • ‘Meanwhile, American intelligence has not yet detected signs of coordination between the Sunni rebellion in Iraq's heartland and the Shiite insurgency.’
    • ‘When reinforcements streamed from the heartland of Tavisnane to support beleaguered garrisons, the people of the towns and cities they left behind rose up to reclaim their walls.’
    • ‘Each of these powers flourished in a Mackinder heartland (the core area of Eurasia) and saw its destiny in mercantilist imperial expansion.’
    • ‘Why, in the heartland of Central Canada, where trains are allegedly a reasonable means of transportation, aren't train stations not dives?’
    • ‘Africans tended to retain reserves in the heartlands of their old, conquered chiefdoms - the areas most suitable for their systems of agricultural and pastoral production.’
    • ‘Carty's work had taken him to many homes throughout the rural heartlands of the electoral area over many years.’
    • ‘Such urban novels were doubly marginalised, as Scottish within a British context, and as urban within a context which identified rural, Gaelic and Scots-speaking areas as the heartland of the nation.’
    • ‘‘The Taliban has lost its morale,’ he said, speaking by satellite phone from the heartlands of Zabul province, a Taliban redoubt.’
    • ‘It seems that forked blades might have first originated in Sanxingdui and were exported eastward to the central heartland.’
    • ‘The period saw the establishment of Arab Muslim rule over the heartlands of the Middle East and preparation for conquests and expansion carried out under subsequent dynasties.’
    • ‘How did there come to be so many Buddhists living in Kalmykia, an Ireland-sized region on Europe's eastern edge, thousands of miles from the religion's Asian heartland?’
    • ‘For most of the past two millennia, the carpet heartlands have been in turmoil, raked by battles, invasions and migrations.’
    • ‘The rich and layered contemporary soundscapes owe less to the Celtic fringes than to England's northern heartlands.’
    • ‘It has been greatest in the ancient heartlands of civilization in the Mediterranean Basin, western and central Asia, and China, and least in the polar desert.’
    • ‘It was Namangani's first attempt to strike out from his mountain hideouts to the strategic heartland of Central Asia, the fertile, densely populated Ferghana Valley basin.’
    • ‘The Cameronian heartlands were to be one of the first areas to experience ‘Improvement’.’
    1. 1.1 The center of support for a belief or movement.
      ‘the heartland of the rebel cause’
      • ‘That said, there were also areas of the Sunni heartland where turn-out was scarce and intimidation appeared to have won.’
      • ‘In particular he is worried at the impact a smoking ban would have in sports and social clubs in Labour's central belt heartlands.’
      • ‘It is a hit not just in the liberal areas but also in the so called heartlands of Republicanism.’
      • ‘The Liberal Democrats are to make a dramatic move to seize support in Labour's heartlands by proposing that all charges for NHS care be scrapped.’
      • ‘Critics claimed the changes shifted money away from wealthier, rural areas to poorer Labour heartlands in the inner-cities.’
      • ‘Across the opposition heartlands, people talk like this - and worse.’
      • ‘The really catastrophic collapse in Labour's vote took place in Labour's heartlands, the urban working-class areas.’
      • ‘The people of republican and nationalist heartlands do not deserve to be occupied by the British Army.’
      • ‘The industrial district of Setubal in southern Portugal was one of the heartlands of the country's revolution of 1974-5, which overthrew a military dictatorship.’
      • ‘This is an area that includes Tory heartlands and very rundown areas.’
      • ‘None of the council's four Sunni members represents the rural areas of the Sunni heartland.’
      • ‘We are looking for gains in Labour's traditional heartlands, but also in other areas of Wales.’
      • ‘A strong partnership with trade unions is seen by many, particularly on the left of the SNP, as essential if the party is to build support in Labour's central belt heartlands and make the leap from opposition to government.’
      • ‘Deserts and mountains divided China from the Buddhist heartlands.’
      • ‘The Conservative-controlled council laid the blame squarely at the feet of the Government, which it accused of switching money to Labour heartlands in the Midlands and the North.’
      • ‘The established churches may be dying back in Christianity's historic heartlands, but Jesus himself shows an astonishing ability to escape their confines and find a new life as an all-purpose 21st century guru.’
      • ‘Party insiders admit the party will struggle to hold on to its heartlands in areas like Birmingham and Tyneside.’
      • ‘He told reporters in Southampton, a key area in the Lib Dems' southern heartlands, that the policies ‘are all designed to increase support for the family and maintain the central role of the family in society’.’
      • ‘He still edits Scotland's biggest-selling daily red-top with an enduring political clout in Labour's west coast and central belt heartlands.’
      • ‘During the late 1980s and the early to mid 1990s, the SNP was able to eat into Labour's heartlands by presenting itself in these areas as a socialist party standing in the traditions of Red Clydeside.’
    2. 1.2the heartland The central part of the US; the Midwest.
      ‘a recession that battered the coasts while sparing the heartland’
      • ‘And that's why we got to clamp down on these poisonous perverts burrowing into the midsection of our heartland with their blasphemous ceremonies.’
      • ‘Well, that's what the Republicans think, that he is a movement candidate, who seems too out of the mainstream of the - of most Americans in the heartland.’
      • ‘And now it's hitting the airwaves for the very first time in the heartland, the Midwest and Southeast.’
      • ‘Now we have 28 nations in this world that have ballistic missile capabilities, and it's folly for us not to provide a protection to the heartland of America when we can do so and make it work.’
      • ‘Democrats, they say, are hopelessly out of touch with the deep family values practiced by born-again Christians in the South and Midwestern heartland.’
      • ‘This city's Latino population grew by more than 1,500 percent over the past decade, part of a national trend of Latinos leaving the cities in search of America's heartland.’
      • ‘Is this what the president thinks of us folks in the heartland?’
      • ‘I know he's a real rancher and down home guy, but c'mon, the whole point of the interview is to find out what Democrats should do to win in the heartland, and he dispenses advice about it quite freely.’
      • ‘And she also had a big hit in the heartland called ‘The Bumper of My SUV.’’
      • ‘If they could mobilize every Democratic vote in America's industrial centers - and in its populist heartland as well - then they would win on math alone.’
      • ‘And yet that version of the heartland has never really existed anymore than George Washington's cherry tree or Jack Kennedy's virtue.’
      • ‘Some people might take offense to this, citing that the Midwest is the breadbasket or the heartland, but I disagree.’
      • ‘In many ways they are quite liberal themselves, at least compared to the stereotype we are fed of the ‘average’ American from the heartland.’
      • ‘As I write from the heartland, in a small rural town in Northwest Ohio, the world, with the help of my government, is undergoing a process of reorganization.’
      • ‘What they aren't hearing are voices from the heartland or for that matter voices from workers in Central America.’
      • ‘Indulge a little Midwestern fantasy: It may be the heartland of America - the Bible belt even - but Kansas City just got a bit, well, sexier.’
      • ‘Herman Roth's employer, an insurance company, decides to transfer him and other Jewish workers to jobs in the heartland too, ostensibly to stir the melting pot.’
      • ‘There are, and here in the heartland, many are disturbed by what is increasingly being recognized as the high-jacking of their Faith and they are not accepting it.’
      • ‘‘We've got to win in the heartland of America,’ Reed said.’
      • ‘In a small town in the heartland of America, an effigy adorned with a turban and a long coat dangled from the roof of the American Legion Hall - where subtlety is in short supply.’