Category talk:Religionism

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I suggest a move to "Category:Religious prejudice"... AnonMoos 16:31, 22 September 2007 (UTC)

  • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment It would be helpful to give the argument for the proposed move here. Walter Siegmund (talk) 03:20, 23 September 2007 (UTC)

Well, "Religionism" seems to be something of a neologism, and is probably not immediately understandable to many, and I thought that "Religious prejudice" would be more intuitive. However, thinking about it, "Religious prejudice" might also be interpreted as "Religiously-motivated prejudice", so perhaps "Prejudice against religions" would be better... By the way, there's no Wikipedia article "Religionism"... AnonMoos 06:08, 23 September 2007 (UTC)

en:Religious intolerance? --SB_Johnny | PA! 13:29, 23 September 2007 (UTC)
That phrase also appears to suffer from a certain ambiguity between what grammarians would call a "subjective" or "objective" reading (is it intolerance by religions or intolerance against religions?)... AnonMoos 00:53, 24 September 2007 (UTC)
What's wrong with that? --SB_Johnny | PA! 09:27, 24 September 2007 (UTC)
Well, it depends on how unambiguous you want the category's purpose to be... AnonMoos 10:01, 24 September 2007 (UTC)
Please see wiktionary for "Religionism".[1] Walter Siegmund (talk) 02:04, 24 September 2007 (UTC)
Unfortunately, in the meaning "Marked or excessive inclination to religion; exaggerated or affected religious zeal" (OED 1st. edition definition) this is a somewhat obscure and archaic nineteenth-century word, while the meaning "discrimination on the basis of religion" (parallel to rac-ism, sex-ism, class-ism etc.) is a rather recent neologism which doesn't yet seem to be listed in most paper dictionaries... AnonMoos 04:52, 24 September 2007 (UTC)

There is a difference between dislike/criticism and outrigth hatred. // Liftarn

Do you have any particular specific suggestion as to possibly improving the name of this category? AnonMoos 10:35, 24 September 2007 (UTC)
Religious intolerance could work, or Religious discrimination, but that is something different than Religious hatered. // Liftarn
Respecting the difference Liftarn pointed out, how about two levels, dislike or criticism on the basis of another's religion or religious beliefs and hatred on the basis of another's religion or religious beliefs?   — Jeff G. (talk|contribs) 00:08, 2 October 2007 (UTC)
Intolerance still strikes me as a neutral, cool-headed description. "Intolerance of a religion one does not practice" (or even a lack thereof, since there is a certain intolerance of atheism as well here in the U.S.) pretty much captures the two subcategories. "Religionism", to me, just sounds like "a belief in religions", which doesn't particularly describe the subcats (I'm sure there are atheists who dislike islam and judaism as well). --SB_Johnny | PA! 08:15, 2 October 2007 (UTC)
I propose the following hierarchy, some of which is intended to be humorous:
  — Jeff G. (talk|contribs) 21:06, 14 October 2007 (UTC)
I like that list. ;-) though I'm not sure that Category:Antisemitism belongs to Category:Racial intolerance since there are large w:Jewish ethnic divisions. --Raphael1 19:16, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
Actually, I like it too (assuming we can ditch the part from **Category:Operating system centrism down). --SB_Johnny | PA! 22:11, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
Give me a break! "Slanted eye centrism"?? "Mulatto skin centrism"??? I think we need something approaching a serious proposal before we can seriously discuss implementing it... AnonMoos 02:24, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

Walter Siegmund requested me to make comments about this issue. I notice that:

  • only 2 subcategories (no media files) are categorized in Category:Religionism
  • I have not found a page about “Religionism” in the English Wikipedia
  • “Religionism” appears to me as a pedantic neologism about a vague subject

Therefore, my opinion is:

  • the “Religionism” subject is inappropriate in Commons Wikimedia (this project is neither an encyclopaedia, nor a dictionary)
  • this category is detrimental to browsing in the Commons database
  • the English Wikipedia can give some clues to properly categorize the 2 subcategories
  • add a redirection to Category:Religion

--Juiced lemon 08:52, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

Did you read what the debate was actually about? Like examining the main discussion page Image_talk:Gathering of eagles.jpg? This category could well be eliminated, but if it is, it won't be merged with Category:Religion... AnonMoos 11:22, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
Who did tell you about a merging? --Juiced lemon 15:57, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

The meaning of religionism as discrimination on the basis of religion or religious beliefs was new for me, too. And my Collins dictionary fails to mention this as well. I have, however, checked the archive of the New York Times and found some hints that this term was possibly coined by the performance artist Karen Finley:

We always speak our mind
appreciate differences in culture
believe in sexual preferences
believe in no racism, no sexism, no religionism.
Cited out of her poem "Black Sheep", see New York Times, September 1, 1990

The other meanings of religionism are, however, not necessarily restricted to the 19th century. To quote another article of the New York Times:

Earlier prohibitionary movements were powered by right-wing religionism and emphasized personal morality.
Foster Gunnison, The Danger in Social Crusades, April 6, 1986, New York Times (sorry, no link, this is only accessible to subscribers)

Given the widely different meanings and the comparatively rare use of this word, I agree that terms like intolerance or prejudice could be more helpful. --AFBorchert 22:38, 18 October 2007 (UTC)


It looks like no one in the 2007 discussion actually liked the term Religionism, but it was never changed. It seems obvious that it should be. The question is, to what?

It appears that the primary objection to the term Religious intolerance was that it is vague regarding whether whether one is prejudiced toward a religion or against a religion (or all religions). However, it seems to me this vagueness is natural and correct, as evidenced in the Wikipedia definition. Was the Spanish Inquisition prejudiced toward their version of Christianity, or against Judaism? Are modern Islamists prejudiced toward their version of Islam, or against Christians, Jews and Hindus? Is Leninist/Maoist Communism prejudiced toward their version of atheism, or against all other religions?

The problem I see with this whole intolerance angle, however, is how to decide what qualifies as intolerance. I doubt any of the above groups would label themselves as intolerant. Is anyone who believes in any religion, by definition, intolerant? Are people who disapprove of homosexuality, by definition, intolerant? How about people who disapprove of recreational drug use? People who disapprove of politically-motivated assassinations? Are pro-lifers intolerant of choice, or are pro-choicers intolerant of life? Are Turkish women who want to wear hijabs intolerant, or is the secularist government that prohibits them from doing so intolerant? Is Obama being intolerant in saying, "So help me, God," or are the atheists who sued to prevent him from doing so being intolerant?

The same problem would arise if we use prejudice or discrimination instead of intolerance. The conflict goes well beyond mere choice of words, being rooted in a multiplicity of mutually contradictory worldviews.

Unfortunately, I don't see any easy answer. However, I still think Religious intolerance is a better name than Religionism. Any objections to changing it? –Gerrit Erasmus (talk) 16:51, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

The category name should encompass atheist intolerance of religions... How about Category:Anti-religious prejudice? AnonMoos (talk) 17:35, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Echoing Juiced Lemon above, this category is not helpful. Its subcategories should be placed directly into its parent categories, neither of which is very large. This category should be redirected or deleted. Walter Siegmund (talk)
I think it's somewhat useful to group together instances of religious based discrimination. AnonMoos (talk) 08:28, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
With only nine subcats in Category:Discrimination (one of which is Antichristianity, by the way), it is easy to pick out subcats of religious based discrimination. If it grows too large, it may be easier to find a name for new grouping. But it would be obvious to call a subcat of Category:Discrimination, Category:Religious Discrimination. It may not be all encompassing, but is easy to understand, and surely useful. I'm just not convinced that it is needed.Walter Siegmund (talk) 04:12, 29 January 2009 (UTC)
This category currently has an odd name, which can probably be improved, but it does form a natural and useful classification of items, and I don't think its parent category having only nine subcats has much to do with it... AnonMoos (talk) 07:39, 29 January 2009 (UTC)
I agree with AnonMoos. Religious prejudice is a natural subcategory, on a par with racial prejudice.
To my mind, Anti-religious prejudice denotes only atheists, whereas Religious intolerance encompasses intolerant atheists right alongside intolerant Muslims and intolerant Christians.
What's the difference between Category:Discrimination and Category:Prejudice? Offhand, I would think Category:Discrimination bears a connotation of official denial of equal rights. If that's correct, most of these subcats would seem to fit better under Category:Prejudice.
This relates to Walter's comment. If these images suggest the official denial of religious freedom, then Category:Religious discrimination would seem appropriate. If they suggest merely personal antagonism on the part of individuals and non-government organizations, then Category:Religious intolerance would seem to fit better. I would lean toward the latter.
Likewise, Category:Racism might be a subcat of Category:Prejudice, while Category:Racial segregation is a subcat of Category:Racism and Category:Discrimination. –Gerrit Erasmus (talk) 22:21, 16 February 2009 (UTC)
The problem is that with antisemitism and islamophobia there is also an ethnic component so it's juts not the religion they are opposed, but anyone with that background or even people who look like they have that background (that's how for instance Sikhs can become the target of islamophobia). // Liftarn (talk) 18:28, 17 February 2009 (UTC)