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Nazi is the common English language term for National Socialist. The word was and still is used primarily by opponents.

The word was originally an abbreviation of the German pronunciation of "Nationalsozialist" (in part from the earlier German "sozi", popular abbreviation of "socialist"), from the "Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei" or the National Socialist German Workers' Party (NSDAP). The earlier nickname "Nazi" or "Naczi" has been argued to "Nazi" being used by opponents.

Related words include Nazism and Neo-Nazism.


The term is claimed by some to have been invented by Konrad Heiden, a founding member of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (KPD), as a political epithet during the 1920s as a means of denigrating the NSDAP and National Socialism more generally.[1] However, these claims have been heavily disputed.[2]

The NSDAP briefly adopted the word, in attempt to give it a more positive sense, but soon gave up this effort and generally avoided it while in power.[3] A rare example of its usage is a 1931 work by Joseph Goebbels titled The Nazi-Sozi: Questions and Answers for National Socialists.

American Nazi Party founder George Lincoln Rockwell was a rare example of a supporter who used the word. The term was used by Rockwell for shock value and to counter the mainstream media's "silent treatment" on his fledgling organization. Another example of a supporter who uses the term is the Rhodesian-born South African white nationalist Jan Lamprecht.

In the Soviet Union, the terms National Socialist and Nazi have been stated to have been forbidden after 1932, presumably to avoid any taint to the word "socialist". Soviet literature instead referred to fascists.[3]

As an example of popular political correctness and political bias, compare the usage of the term Soviet Union with "Commie Russia", cheap name calling.

Despite this, using "Nazi" or "Nazism" instead of "National Socialist" or "National Socialism" is extremely common. An example of this is on Wikipedia, a self-described anti-Nazi and anti-fascist website[4] run by the "anti-racist" Wikimedia Foundation,[5] which routinely uses the terms "Nazi" and "neo-Nazi", despite not using "Commie", which its editors (most of whom are supportive of the militant ideology of communism) consider pejorative. Notably, it also refers to some nationalist groups, such as Britain First, as "fascist" or "neo-fascist", despite such organizations not describing themselves as such and generally supporting very few aspects of fascism.

Present-day pejorative usage of the term

Today, the term "Nazi" and its derivatives, as well as the word fascist, are widely used as pejoratives against a wide variety of conservative individuals and organizations who may merely support views such as immigration reduction or even a form of civic nationalism. It is also used as a reclaimed word by some conservatives against supporters of political correctness, mostly in association with the ongoing cultural revolution otherwise described by its critics as the "Great Awokening".


See also

External links