Definition of backwater noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

     

    backwater

     noun
    noun
    BrE BrE//ˈbækwɔːtə(r)//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈbækwɔːtər//
     
     
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  1. 1a part of a river away from the main part, where the water only moves slowly
  2. 2(often disapproving) a place that is away from the places where most things happen, and is therefore not affected by events, progress, new ideas, etc. a sleepy/quiet/rural backwater The region became more and more of an economic backwater.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: backwater