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Is there an itemize or enumerate like environment that allows you to use words preceding each item instead of a dot or number. So it'll output something nice for text structures like the following:

Blogiddy Bloop --- A bloggidy bloop is a thing that does stuff.

Apwitchik --- A apwitchik is a thing that does other stuff.

Deddydoo --- A Deddydoo does all the stuff a Bloggiddy Bloop and an Apwitchik do, but even more.

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up vote 11 down vote accepted

A regular description environment does this for you. It typesets its argument in bold, although this can be modified using the enumitem:

enter image description here

\documentclass{article}
\begin{document}
\begin{description}
  \item[Blogiddy Bloop] --- A bloggidy bloop is a thing that does stuff.
  \item[Apwitchik] --- A apwitchik is a thing that does other stuff.
  \item[Deddydoo] --- A Deddydoo does all the stuff a Bloggiddy Bloop and an Apwitchik do, but even more.
\end{description}
\end{document}

If you want to add the --- style, you could create a command (say) \descitem[<item>] to include this by default. <item> is optional, and defaults to Item:

\documentclass{article}
\newcommand{\descitem}[1][Item]{\item[#1~---]}%
\begin{document}
\begin{description}
  \descitem[Blogiddy Bloop] A bloggidy bloop is a thing that does stuff.
  \descitem[Apwitchik] A apwitchik is a thing that does other stuff.
  \descitem[Deddydoo] A Deddydoo does all the stuff a Bloggiddy Bloop and an Apwitchik do, but even more.
\end{description}
\end{document}
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Yes, the {description} environment. Use like this:

\begin{description}
 \item[label 1] First item.
 \item[label 2] Second item.
\end{description}

The labels will be whatever you put in the square brackets.

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