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1. government by an individual with unrestricted authority
2. the unrestricted authority of such an individual
3. a country, society, etc., ruled by an autocrat


rule by one person, especially arbitrary or absolute rule. Compare ABSOLUTISM.



a form of government involving the unlimited and unchecked sovereignty of one individual in a state. The despotic monarchies of the ancient East, the tyrannical governments in some ancient Greek states, the Roman and Byzantine empires, and absolute monarchies of recent times were autocracies. The notion of autocracy was also used to designate unlimited authority in any given sphere of state activity. In contemporary literature, the notion of autocracy also designates political regimes characterized by the supreme power of a “leader” (Führer, duce, caudillo) who is not controlled by representative organs.


References in periodicals archive ?
If rulers and ruled (or, to be precise, a small portion of the latter) worked jointly for a reforming and reformed autocracy in the 18th century, the picture becomes much more complicated in the course of the next century or so.
In contrast, in an autocracy power is concentrated in the ruling party or the elite, which has an incentive to maximize the total amount of corruption and to develop the economy (so that it can extract further bribes and prevent a potential overthrow).This incentive encourages the ruling party/elite to award economic resources and projects to those firms that pay the highest bribes, assuming all bribers subject to the same project specifications, the highest bribe payer is the most efficient.
His Vision 2030 constitutes a needed upgrading of autocracy. Nonetheless, leaving aside economic questions about the vision, Prince Mohammed will not be able to turn Saudi Arabia into a diversified knowledge economy on the basis of a backward looking interpretation of Islam that harks back to the 7th century.
Finally, assertions that the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) is planning on widening the breadth of its city wars in the Southeast on March 21 (Nevruz), as well as the apparent approach of the end of the civil war in Syria, should both be seen as actual developments likely to restrict and bind the rule of autocracy in Turkey.
"Lee Kuan Yew (the founder of Singapore) was criticized for autocracy and absence of democracy in the country.
Her topics include hearing the people's complaints: Kandahar to Kabul 2001-09, vertically integrated criminal syndicates in Kabul and Garmisch 2009-10, the Arab Spring as a revolt against kleptocracy, the post-Soviet kleptocratic autocracy in Uzbekistan about 2013, up a level to Afghanistan and Washington from June 2010 to January 2011, and violent extremists.
Yemen has been suffering some political unrests since a popular uprising that erupted in 2011 ended the autocracy of President Ali Abdullah Saleh a year later.
Peteza said that "without the politicians, government tends to become autocratic." But aren't we, in fact, already in thrall of an autocracy of political dynasties and pocket empires?
Onlookers can no longer claim that "anything is better than despotism." Democracy does not automatically replace autocracy, and well-functioning institutions of law, education and governance can vanish overnight.
She by no means intends to feed the narrative of doomed autocracy but rather to read each killing as a juncture "in a historical road that pointed in several directions" (11).
"The autocracy of Nawaz Sharif has been exposed, we will not leave them.
He continued that there were not a partnership, but it was autocracy, and the authorities in Baghdad want to control everything, and this is unacceptable to us.