From the 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)
- An ideology, system of thought, or practice that can be described by a word ending in -ism.
- Synonym: whateverism
- 1843, Thomas Carlyle, chapter XV, in Past and Present, book 2:
- […] 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!
- 1887 August, W[illiam] G[raham] Sumner, “State Interference”, in North American Review:
- If it gives way to sentimentalism, or sensibility, or political mysticism, or adopts an affectation of radicalism, or any other ism, or molds its institutions so as to round out to a more complete fulfillment somebody's theory of the universe, it may fall into an era of revolution and political insecurity […]
- 1965, Bertram David Wolfe, Marxism, One Hundred Years in the Life of a Doctrine, page 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?, page xi:
- In his exposition, he has failed to achieve the identification of situation, theory, and policy necessary to create an ism.
- 1986, John Hughes, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, spoken by Ferris Bueller (Matthew Broderick):
- 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, page 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.
- (specifically) A form of discrimination, such as racism or sexism.
ideology, system of thought or practice
a form of discrimination
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.
- "isms" in Raymond Williams, Keywords (revised), 1983, Fontana Press, page 173.
- root (of a plant)
ism (plural ismát)
From Persian اسم (esm), from Arabic اِسْم (ism).
ism (plural ismlar)