ableism

noun
able·​ism | \ ˈā-bə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce ableism (audio) \

Definition of ableism

: discrimination or prejudice against individuals with disabilities

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from ableism

ableist \ ˈā-​bə-​ˌlist How to pronounce ableist (audio) \ adjective

Examples of ableism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Her memoir, too, encouraged me to ask questions: How does pervasive ableism affect the way our society continues to be architected? Jacqueline Alnes, Longreads, "On Representations of Disability: A Reading List," 26 July 2019 Educate yourself and do the work to uproot white supremacy, misogyny, transphobia, homophobia, ableism, and fat phobia/body shaming in yourself. Casey Johnston, SELF, "Ask a Swole Woman: How Can I Find Safe and Inclusive Gyms?," 23 Oct. 2018 Fitness culture in general can be a very toxic and intimidating space, often populated by ableism and fat-shaming. Beth Mccoll, SELF, "I Have Depression and Anxiety. Please Stop Telling Me to ‘Go for a Run’," 16 Apr. 2018 Sexism, white supremacy, ableism, and capitalism are fundamental parts of Hollywood and filmmaking as the gatekeepers have managed to maintain and support the oppressive building blocks put in place by their predecessors. Lara Witt, Teen Vogue, "The 2018 Oscars Seemed to Reward Alleged Abusers Despite #MeToo and #TimesUp," 5 Mar. 2018 Body-shaming, ageism, sexism, discriminatory dress codes, ableism. Jonathan Jones, SI.com, "Cam Makes His Move Off the Field," 20 Feb. 2018 One simple reason for this exclusion is the power of ableism. Alice Wong, Teen Vogue, "Disabled People Still Aren't Being Cast to Tell Their Own Stories in Hollywood," 8 Jan. 2018 Lorde's comments rankled a sizable chunk of her Twitter followers, who criticized her callousness and even pointed out that the statement reflected a certain level of ableism. Emily Mae Czachor, chicagotribune.com, "Lorde apologizes for autoimmune disease comment when describing her friendship with Taylor Swift," 20 June 2017 Disabled people should be proud to associate themselves with animals, Taylor argues, because the same ideology, ableism, oppresses both groups. Joshua Rothman, The New Yorker, "Are Disability Rights and Animal Rights Connected?," 5 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ableism.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of ableism

1981, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ableism

-able (in disable, disabled) + -ism

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about ableism

Statistics for ableism

Time Traveler for ableism

The first known use of ableism was in 1981

See more words from the same year

Comments on ableism

What made you want to look up ableism? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

to speed up the process or progress of

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Pass the Little Ribbons: A Pasta Word Quiz

  • pasta resembling wheels with spokes
  • Match the pasta to its meaning in English: Rotelle
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!