Am I right that a rah-rah rally is principally a rally held to (uncritically and enthusiastically) celebrate someone or something or are there connotations I'm not aware of?

Is this spoken /rɑːrɑː ˈræli/? I could neither find an English definition nor a phonetic transcription.

1 Answer 1


From NOAD:

rah (exclamation) a cheer of encouragement or approval
       ORIGIN late 19th cent.: shortening of hurrah.

I don’t know of anyone who actually yells “rah” spontaneously at a sporting event, but you sometimes might hear it repeated in a scripted cheer:

Rah! Rah! Ski-U-Mah. Rah! Rah! Rah!
March on, March on to Victory
Loyal Sons of Varsity
Fight on, Fight on for Minnesota
For the glory of the Old Maroon and Gold

Source: Minnesota March

Your hunch about the meaning of rah-rah rally is spot on. A rah-rah rally is packed with supporters who are more interested in whipping up excitement for a person or idea than carefully analyzing it or debating it.


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