pariahism

pariah

[puh-rahy-uh]
noun
1.
an outcast.
2.
any person or animal that is generally despised or avoided.
3.
(initial capital letter) a member of a low caste in southern India and Burma.

Origin:
1605–15; < Tamil paṟaiyar, plural of paṟaiyan literally, drummer (from a hereditary duty of the caste), derivative of paṟai a festival drum

pariahdom, noun
pariahism, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To pariahism
Collins
World English Dictionary
pariah (pəˈraɪə, ˈpærɪə)
 
n
1.  a social outcast
2.  (formerly) a member of a low caste in South India
 
[C17: from Tamil paraiyan drummer, from parai drum; so called because members of the caste were the drummers at festivals]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Etymonline
Word Origin & History

pariah
1613, from Port. paria or directly from Tamil paraiyar, pl. of paraiyan "drummer" (at festivals, the hereditary duty of members of the largest of the lower castes of southern India), from parai "large festival drum." Especially numerous at Madras, where its members supplied most of the domestics in European
service. Applied by Hindus and Europeans to members of any low Hindu caste and even to outcastes. Extended meaning "social outcast" is first attested 1819.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary
pariah [(puh-reye-uh)]

An outcast; a member of a low caste or class.

Note: The word originally stems from the caste system of India, which put pariahs in a very low place in society. In the United States, it refers to those of low social class or social status.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Related Words
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature