I am at the CiRCE national conference at the moment and have heard a good on the matter of worlds over the last two days. What follows is nothing more than a brief catalogue of ways in which worlds are spoken of.
“This world”: The word as existential reality; everything this side of the Resurrection and return of Christ; icon of ephemerality.
“The world”: That thing which is contrary to God and attempts to exclude God; “I have overcome the world”
“The real world”: A particular plane of reality; see also “the adult world” or “the teenage world”
“The world”: The earth; everything under heaven; “He has made this round world so sure…”
“Cigar world”: A marketing strategy; a large commercial enterprise devoted to one product; see also “RV World” or “Shoe World”
“The Chinese world”: A self-contained, complete civilization referred to as other; see also “the African world” or “the Australian world”
“Your own little world”: A frame of mind