One of my favorite parts of Spanish is the suffix -ismo. For me, the English -ism brings to mind a fairly unhappy array including racism, sexism, classism…

But in Spanish, -ismo can be added to pretty much anything, from drugs to grammar. Some of my favorite examples:

  • tobacco > tobaquismo (tobacco use)
  • Daniel Ortega > Orteguismo (his political approach)
  • Hugo Chavez > Chavismo (his political approach)
  • imperial > imperialismo (something the aforementioned political approach habitually denounces)
  • sendero (trail) > senderismo (hiking)
  • lo (a Spanish pronoun) > loismo (misuse of said Spanish pronoun)

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