Sexism is prejudice or discrimination based on a person's sex, behavior, conditions, or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles based on sex. It may include the belief that a person of one sex is intrinsically superior to a person of the other sex. Sexist claims are based on both real and alleged differences between men and women. More specifically, common sexist claims stem from traditional stereotypes of patriarchal gender roles. According to dictionaries, the term sexism commonly refers to discrimination against women; however, sexism can also apply to men.

Due to the Smurfs being portrayed as a single-gender race with only a few female Smurfs that were introduced into the cast of characters, sexism is an unavoidable topic both within the mainstream media universe and outside it. In fact, the Smurfs themselves are responsible for coining the TV Tropes term "the Smurfette principle" to describe fictional works in which only a few female characters have been added to an overall male cast.

In the comic book story "The Great Smurfette", Smurfette deals with sexism among her fellow Smurfs as Papa Smurf leaves her in charge of the Smurf Village while he is gone. The upcoming film Smurfs: The Lost Village may also deal with this issue as the Smurfs encounter their female counterparts, the Smurfettes.

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