International Affairs
12 June 2015 , Volume 71, Number 3

The tables show when words or phrases made their first or last appearance in the pages of  The World Today. The ‘Third World’ had a 40-year run before it was challenged by ‘Global South’. ‘American decline’ appeared in 1988, but had to wait four years for ‘China’s rise’ to join it on the global seesaw. ‘Red lines’, which passed into common parlance after Barack Obama used the term in 2012, have been drawn in the sands of the Middle East since 1976. As for the phrases which have passed out of use, that Cold War stalwart, the ‘free world’, took an early bath in 1955.  Others have staggered on well after their sell-by date, often making their final appearance in embarrassed quotation marks. 


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