Ohio State University

What is hegemonic discourse?

It keeps coming up in my anthropology class and I'm having trouble understanding what exactly it is. The class is on development.

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Hegemonic discourse is based on underlying assumptions specific to a culture or society. Think of it as a discourse based on a norm or normal component of the society around but not a norm for all. For example, a girl discussing a two-piece bikini would not be looked at twice by most people, however,in some parts of the world this is not the norm.