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See also: ISM, -ism, and -ism-



From suffix -ism ‎(belief), particularly (in the 19th century) in the sense of “social movement”. Compare phobia, from -phobia, sophy, from -sophy, itis, from -itis, and ana, from -ana.


ism ‎(plural isms)

  1. An ideology, system of thought, or practice that can be described by a word ending in -ism.
    • 1843, Thomas Carlyle, Past and Present, book 2, ch. XV, Practical — Devotional
      […] his religion, his worship was like his daily bread to him; — which he did not take the trouble to talk much about; which he merely ate at stated intervals, and lived and did his work upon! This is Abbot Samson’s Catholicism of the Twelfth Century; — something like the Ism of all true men in all true centuries, I fancy! Alas, compared with any of the Isms current in these poor days, what a thing!
    • 1965, Bertram David Wolfe, Marxism, One Hundred Years in the Life of a Doctrine, p. 357,
      An ism does not have to possess the fearful implements of state power to cut off a a deviant or heretical member.
    • 1969, Walter E. Minchinton, Mercantilism; System Or Expediency?, p. xi,
      In his exposition, he has failed to achieve the identification of situation, theory, and policy necessary to create an ism.
    • 1986, Matthew Broderick (as Ferris Bueller), Ferris Bueller’s Day Off:
      Isms in my opinion are not good. A person should not believe in an ism – he should believe in himself.
    • 1994, Kenneth Kaye, Workplace Wars and How to End Them, p. 70,
      It is important to distinguish between an ism and a mere generalization about group differences. Generalizations that have statistical validity are not isms. An ism assumes that the generalization applies to an individual.
  2. Specifically, a form of discrimination, such as racism or sexism.


See also[edit]




ism ‎(plural ismlar)

  1. This term needs a translation to English. Please help out and add a translation, then remove the text {{rfdef}}.