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- (politics, idiomatic, derogatory) A small country, especially one in Central America or the West Indies, that is dependent on a single export commodity (traditionally bananas) and that has a corrupt, dictatorial government.
- Hypernym: kleptocracy
- 1901 May 1, Henry, O., “Money Maze”, in Ainslee's Magazine, volume vii, number 4, New York, page 305:
- At that time we had a treaty with about every foreign country except Belgium, and that banana republic, Anchuria.
- 2001, Cindy Forster, The Time of Freedom: Campesino Workers in Guatemala's October Revolution, University of Pittsburgh Press (→ISBN), page 117:
- The banana workers of this former banana republic were exceptionally well organized and effective in their demands from the very beginning of the revolution.