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[ik-stree-miz-uh m] /ɪkˈstri mɪz əm/
a tendency or disposition to go to extremes or an instance of going to extremes, especially in political matters:
leftist extremism; the extremism of the Nazis.
Origin of extremism
First recorded in 1860-65; extreme + -ism Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for extremism
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Some of them thought he had a few good ideas, but was damaging his own case by extremism.

    Space Viking Henry Beam Piper
  • With all this extremism, we want a man of principle and common sense.

  • Because of this extremism, his voice was doomed to remain that of one crying in the wilderness.

    Prophets of Dissent Otto Heller
  • The modern tendency in painting cannot be dismissed as charlatanism or extremism.

    Modern Painting, Its Tendency and Meaning Willard Huntington Wright
  • Only the leaders of the New Balkans are much younger, less experienced, more prone to superstition, extremism and moodiness.

    After the Rain Sam Vaknin
Word Origin and History for extremism

1848, from extreme + -ism.

I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice! And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue. [Barry Goldwater (1909-1998), acceptance speech as Republican candidate for President, 1963]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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