I recently learned the word '귀차니즘' - laziness - , from '귀찮다' and the English suffix '-ism'. It seems like adding '-ism' should be quite productive but I couldn't think of any other 'Konglish' words made like this.

Are there any other kinds of '-ism' in Korean?

3 Answers 3


Well, I've heard 먹고사니즘 which means (something like) the idea that making a living (and feeding yourself) is the most important thing and other stuff can wait.

There may be others, but fixing a Korean word with "-ism" feels quite slang-ish, so you might not find many such forms in any "respectable" publication.


A search in Naver Dictionary shows:

  • 커넥션니즘: connectionism
  • 이마지니즘: Imazhinizm
  • 헬리콘니즘: Heliconism

None of those are even common words in English, so it seems to have pretty limited productivity.

A far more productive suffix would be the Sino-Korean version of "-ism" 주의 making words such as:

  • 제국주의: imperialism
  • 자유주의: liberalism
  • 공산주의: communism
  • 민주주의: democracy (not an -ism in English, but you get the idea)
  • I didn't even think to search for '니즘'. I tried 이즘 too but it seems to be more focused on the anglicised versions. Good point about 주의 ! Commented Jan 24, 2017 at 11:34

The word 귀차니즘 has been around for about a decade now, I think, and it's been quite popular among younger generations. I've heard 먹고사니즘 too lately, as jick mentioned, and there should be other words like that which have succeeded in gaining a small amount of popularity. However I don't think there are any similar "Konglish" words that are popular as much as 귀차니즘.

  • Thanks, really useful to know about the frequency of usage. Commented Jan 25, 2017 at 9:13

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