Among my wife’s many charms are her neologisms. Her latest is ‘ismic’, by which is meant, according to its coiner: prone to think and speak in isms. An ism, in turn, is a suffix indicating a condition, as in autism, an arrangement, as in capitalism, or a belief, as in atheism.

My wife coined the term to describe people, often but not always SJWs, who are prone to punctuate their speaking and writing with concatenations of isms, bethinking this to be a mark of intellectual sophistication. So not to be upstaged, neither by her nor by them, parasitic on my wife’s ismic I’ve coined the term ismism, by which is meant the belief that speaking and writing in isms is a mark of intellectual sophistication. 

I grant that ismism doesn’t roll off the tongue the way ismic does, so I promise to use the term very sparingly.     

Categories: Humour

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7 replies

  1. You’ve been scooped on “ismism”, Paul,

    However, my quick consultation with Guru Google suggests “ismic” might indeed be a neologism (another ism!).


  2. Rather than having been scooped, I prefer to think that ismism has been simultaneously coined!


  3. Both of you are onto a major conceptual breakthrough. I have lost many nights of sleep over isms — any isms. When someone with a vague idea of something they have never understood wants to influence others with equal or even less understanding they resort to an ism. Then others chime in. So we have angry diatribes against “capitalism” — whatever that means to anyone — opposed by angry diatribes against socialism — whatever that means to anyone.

    So isms serve a useful purpose. They save the energy required for research and thought, leaving more energy for disputationism.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It actually rolls off the tongue rather nicely if you pronounce it “iz-mizm” (accent on first syllable makes it cognate with “ismic”, nice but not essential for tongue-rolling.) And as the urban dictionary doesn’t offer a pronunciation, possibly the term has only been used only in writing, not speech.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Dear Paul,
    I hate to come here to correct you as I enjoy every single piece you publish here. But I’m afraid I have to inform you that the term ismism was already being coined 29 years ago (and supposedly it’s coiners, the avantgarde pop duo Godley And Creme, had the very same definition as you in mind). It’s one of my go-to records from yesteryear and I bet you’d like it, too: ISMISM.

    Happy New Year from Hamburg, Germany!

    Liked by 1 person

    • When I was four we drove across the country to my mother’s sister’s house, where I wet the bed. I didn’t think I would ever experience an embarrassment worse than that. I was wrong. Scooped by 29 years, you say. Damn! While you’re at it, Matthias, what next? Are you now going to tell me I was also wrong about the Earth being flat? That the entirety of A Christmas Carol was Ebenezer Scrooge just having a dream? That flies do NOT come from where pigs pee in the sand? Until today I prided myself in being graceful when proven wrong. I was wrong!

      Liked by 1 person

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