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Is there an opposite "-ism" word to nepotism? If nepotism refers to the nature of favoring one due to familial or friendly relations, surely there is an antonym to nepotism that conveys the favoring of one due to merit or productivity.

However, "meritism" and "productivism" are not words. Meritorious and productivity work in a pinch to address one's point, but the tense and usage are less helpful when a single "-ism" word could carry the point more concisely.

Thank you for the help!

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    'Meritocracy' fits everything but '-ism'. – Mitch Mar 8 '19 at 12:35
  • Objective, objectivism, maybe. – Lucian Sava Mar 8 '19 at 13:03
  • Alas, @LucianSava, that word has already been claimed by Ayn Rand as the name of her dubious philosophical system. – Juhasz Mar 8 '19 at 14:06
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    There are a few isms I can think of related to the principle of "To each according to his contribution." Seriously though, "egalitarianism" is quite starkly contrastive with "nepotism". – Zebrafish Mar 9 '19 at 0:25
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    It's interesting that you take the opposite of nepotism to be favouring someone due to merit. Why not favouring someone who is not related? Or disfavouring someone who is related? As far as I can tell, favouring someone due to merit is no more the opposite of favouring someone who is related than is favouring someone who is short . . . – Jason Bassford Supports Monica Mar 9 '19 at 10:03
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I couldn't find any opposite word ending with "ism". Many or most words with the suffix "-ism" have been formed to carry a negative connotation. I suggest using the negation prefix "anti-" to establish a clear opposite of whatever "ism" word is used. In this case it would be "anti-nepotism". It would probably work equally well for any of them - the formed anti- word now carrying a double negative effect.

  • I wasn't able to find one either, which is why I asked, to see if the worldwide collection could locate something I don't. How would "anti-nepotism" be a double negative? I think of a double negative like "I don't not like her." – David Clinkscales Mar 13 '19 at 19:45
  • Nepotism is considered a "negative" practice. So, anti-nepotism would generally carry a "positive" meaning or connotation. It is "good" to be "against something that is bad". – user22542 Mar 13 '19 at 19:49
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There are a few isms I can think of related to the principle of "To each according to his contribution." Seriously though, "egalitarianism" is quite starkly contrastive with "nepotism". – Zebrafish Mar 9 at 0:25

Since this format isn't very user friendly, I need to post the answer here. I was hoping there'd be another word to use here, as egalitarianism can sometimes be tied to Christian religious perspectives, but this is currently the best option I have heard as the opposite of "nepotism."

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