ra·​cial·​ism | \ ˈrā-shə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce racialism (audio) \

Definition of racialism

: a belief that race (see race entry 1 sense 1a) determines human traits and capacities also : racism

Other Words from racialism

racialist \ ˈrā-​shə-​list How to pronounce racialism (audio) \ noun or adjective
racialistic \ ˌrā-​shə-​ˈli-​stik How to pronounce racialism (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for racialism


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Examples of racialism in a Sentence

the racialism of some of the nation's founders seems to contradict their professed belief that “all men are created equal” ugly incidents of racialism at the school have decreased since the introduction of multiracial rap sessions
Recent Examples on the Web In our day, he is reviled for his imperialism, racialism, and even his humorously excessive appreciation for a fine cigar. Peter J. Travers, National Review, 7 Dec. 2021 King never seriously entertained the utopian ideas of Black emigration or the romantic racialism of Muhammad’s Black nationalism. Brandon M. Terry, The New York Review of Books, 11 Mar. 2021 Today, certain people talk about racialism, indigenism, and decolonial theories, but beneath these terms hateful and fanatical agitators want a race war. Harrison Stetler, The New Republic, 24 May 2021 Post-racialism is the promise of working to move beyond the perils of the Black condition in America, an achievement of Black acceleration and exceptionalism; when transcending race was aspirational and thought of to be wholly possible. Taylor Renee Aldridge, Harper's BAZAAR, 23 Feb. 2021 Hawley describes Roosevelt as driven by a combination of warrior republicanism and crude racialism, which at times led him to adopt autocratic racial theories and dreams of imperial conquest. Zaid Jilani, Washington Examiner, 31 Dec. 2020 This fusion of racial grievance and post-racialism created a toxic brew, poisonous to the ongoing efforts to contest white supremacy and protective of the invidious status quo that the Voting Rights Act had tried to interrupt. Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw, The New Republic, 23 Oct. 2020 Conservatives claimed the report recklessly lumped legitimate politics together with violent threats, and progressives refused to muster a fight with the Obama administration about racist violence during the short reign of post-racialism. Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw, The New Republic, 23 Oct. 2020 In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, great engines of wealth built global empires that filled the world with colonialism, militarism, and racialism, as well as monuments and marching bands. Marilynne Robinson, The New York Review of Books, 27 May 2020 See More

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

First Known Use of racialism

1880, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for racialism

racial + -ism

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The first known use of racialism was in 1880

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Cite this Entry

“Racialism.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/racialism. Accessed 26 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on racialism

Nglish: Translation of racialism for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about racialism


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