\ ˈkich How to pronounce kitsch (audio) \

Definition of kitsch

1 : something that appeals to popular or lowbrow taste and is often of poor quality
2 : a tacky or lowbrow quality or condition teetering on the brink of kitsch— Ron Miller

Other Words from kitsch

kitschy \ ˈki-​chē How to pronounce kitsch (audio) \ adjective

Did you know?

Kitsch is an early 20th-century borrowing from German, and it refers to things in the realm of popular culture that are tacky, like car mirror dice, plastic flamingos, and dashboard hula dancers.

Examples of kitsch in a Sentence

The restaurant is decorated with 1950s furniture and kitsch from old TV shows.
Recent Examples on the Web The dish is so charged with seaside kitsch that inside the Ferry Building, Hog Island Oyster Company doesn’t even use the word on the menu. New York Times, 2 May 2022 Unlike Sammy’s Roumanian (God rest her soul), the Russian Samovar has never trafficked in its own kitsch. Sloane Crosley, Town & Country, 23 Jan. 2022 Perhaps there’s an intentional element of over-the-top kitsch in the galumphing orgiastic dance that ends Act I, but, if so, James Darrah, who directed the première production, didn’t capitalize on the opportunity. Alex Ross, The New Yorker, 9 Aug. 2021 For nearly a century before Walt Disney’s dream theme park landed in Orlando, tourists were taking trains, boats and cars around the Sunshine State, enjoying roadside shows and Floridian kitsch along the way. Patrick Connolly,, 26 May 2021 Crowe’s mess of incongruous pop imagery makes Show Them the Way the ultimate in Hollywood liberal political kitsch, although triggered by Nicks’s uneasy lyrical musings at her Hamptons abode. Armond White, National Review, 28 Oct. 2020 For all its witch kitsch, Salem is one of the few places that has properly recognized its history. Joseph Prezioso, National Geographic, 23 Oct. 2020 Double Wide and Single Wide, who restored much of the old service station’s character, then added some extra kitsch. Sarah Blaskovich, Dallas News, 22 Sep. 2020 Then a former boss offered her a spot at a new restaurant - the White Limozeen, named in tribute to a Dolly Parton song and decorated in over-the-top kitsch. Russ Bynum, Star Tribune, 31 July 2020 See More

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

First Known Use of kitsch

1925, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for kitsch


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Dictionary Entries Near kitsch

kit out/up



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Statistics for kitsch

Last Updated

13 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Kitsch.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on kitsch

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for kitsch

Nglish: Translation of kitsch for Spanish Speakers


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