elit·​ism ā-ˈlē-ˌti-zəm How to pronounce elitism (audio)
ē- How to pronounce elitism (audio)
: leadership or rule by an elite
: the selectivity of the elite
especially : snobbery
elitism in choosing new members
: consciousness of being or belonging to an elite

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Velez’s Monday night show in a Greenpoint warehouse was like snapping out of the fashion status quo and into something more personal, a red-eyed glare at fashion’s coast elitism. Rachel Tashjian, Harper's BAZAAR, 15 Feb. 2023 Similarly, Hill writes, grunge was in part a result of Generation X’s eye-rolling at the decadence, jingoism and preppy elitism of the ’80s. Ashley Fetters Maloy, Washington Post, 27 Dec. 2022 In Mark Mylod’s stylish satirical takedown of elitism, capitalistic excess and fetishized food culture, Ralph Fiennes delivers a fiendish turn as an egotistical chef whose restaurant occupies a remote island. Ann Hornaday, Washington Post, 16 Nov. 2022 Still, the institution has never quite relinquished its reputation as a haven of elitism, where fine artists play to connoisseurs at high prices in an atmosphere of precious hush. Justin Davidson, Vulture, 8 Oct. 2022 Don’t Let This Flop, Rolling Stone‘s podcast about internet news and culture, cohosts Brittany Spanos and Ej Dickson talk with Lewis about Broadway elitism, TikTok-famous ensemble players, and who the real diva of the Funny Girl revival is. Ej Dickson, Rolling Stone, 19 Sep. 2022 But the educational elitism and buy-in comes at the cost of accessibility. Hannah Summerhill, ELLE, 26 Aug. 2022 Ironically, anthropomorphism, or tactics like it, might be one way of reducing the harms of such rank elitism. Eleanor Cummins, WIRED, 19 Dec. 2022 Short films promote the poll’s avant-garde elitism: Meshes of the Afternoon, La Jetée. Armond White, National Review, 7 Dec. 2022 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1934, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of elitism was in 1934

Dictionary Entries Near elitism

Cite this Entry

“Elitism.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/elitism. Accessed 26 Mar. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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