Ism vs. Schism



An ideology, system of thought, or practice that can be described by a word ending in -ism.


A split or separation within a group or organization, typically caused by discord.


(specifically) A form of discrimination, such as racism or sexism.


(religion) A formal division or split within a religious body.

‘The schism between Sunnis and Shias happened quite early in Islamic history.’;


A doctrine or theory; especially, a wild or visionary theory.

‘The world grew light-headed, and forth came a spawn of isms which no man can number.’;


(Catholicism) a split within Christianity whereby a group no longer recognizes the Bishop of Rome as the head of the Church, but shares essentially the same beliefs with the Church of Rome. In other words, a political split without the introduction of heresy.


a belief (or system of beliefs) accepted as authoritative by some group or school


Division or separation;

‘Set bounds to our passions by reason, to our errors by truth, and to our schisms by charity.’;


division of a group into opposing factions;

‘another schism like that and they will wind up in bankruptcy’;


A schism ( SIZ-əm, , SKIZ-əm or, less commonly, SHIZ-əm) is a division between people, usually belonging to an organization, movement, or religious denomination. The word is most frequently applied to a split in what had previously been a single religious body, such as the Great East–West Schism or the Western Schism.

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