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Glossary

The Office for Diversity provides this glossary of terms and their basic definitions as a resource for the campus and community. To make a submission or revision to the glossary, please use this form or feel email diversity@tamu.edu. Thank you for helping keep this resource current and relevant. This page was updated September 10, 2021.

A B - C - D - E - F - G - H - I - J - K - L - M - N - O - P - Q - R - S T - U - V - W - XYZ 

A

Ableism: the pervasive system that oppresses people with disabilities while privileging people who do not currently have disabilities. Retrieved from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Access: Creating the necessary conditions so that individuals and organizations desiring to, and who are eligible to, use our services, facilities, programs and employment opportunities. From University of Houston, Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services. Retrieved from: https://uh.edu/cdi/diversity_education/resources/pdf/terms.pdf on September 24, 2020. 

Accessibility: a person with a disability is afforded the opportunity to acquire the same information, engage in the same interactions, and enjoy the same services as a person without a disability in an equally effective and equally integrated manner, with substantially equivalent ease of use. The person with a disability must be able to obtain the information as fully, equally and independently as a person without a disability. Although this might not result in identical ease of use compared to that of persons without disabilities, it still must ensure equal opportunity to the educational benefits and opportunities afforded by the technology and equal treatment in the use of such technology. From: US Department of Education (ED). (2021, June 23). Office for Civil Rights: U.S. Department of Education. Office for Civil Rights | U.S. Department of Education. https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/investigations/11116002-b.html

Active Racism: Actions which have as their stated or explicit goal the maintenance of the system of racism and the oppression of those in the targeted racial groups. People who participate in active racism advocate the continued subjugation of members of the targeted groups and protection of "the rights" of members of the agent group. These goals are often supported by a belief in the inferiority of People of Color and the superiority of white people, culture, and values. Source: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Appendix 6B: Definitions of General Concepts I - Racism. In Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Affirmative Action: A set of procedures designed to eliminate unlawful discrimination among applicants, remedy the results of such prior discrimination, and prevent such discrimination in the future. Applicants may be seeking admission to an educational program or looking for professional employment. In modern American jurisprudence, it typically imposes remedies against discrimination on the basis of, at the very least, race, creed, color, and national origin. Retrieved from: Cornell Law School Legal Information Institute (n.d.). Affirmative Action. https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/affirmative_actio

Affinity Group:  a group of people having a common interest or goal acting together for a specific purpose Source: Merriam-Webster. (n.d.). Affinity Group. In Merriam-Webster.com dictionary. Retrieved July 15, 2021, from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/affinity%20group

African American: 1. An ethnic group in the United States of America whose ancestors, usually in predominant part, were indigenous to West and sub-Saharan Africa. Many African Americans also have European and/or Native American ancestors. 2. Refers to Black individuals living in the United States with African ancestry. 3. Refers to individuals of African heritage living in the United States having similar experiences, culture heritage and ancestry of former slaves. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 163). Embrace Publications. Ohio University. (n.d.). Diversity Dictionary. Retrieved June 12, 2014, from http://www.ohio.edu/orgs/one/dd.html

Ageism: refers to the stereotypes (how we think), prejudice (how we feel) and discrimination (how we act) towards others or oneself based on age. Source: World Health Organization. (n.d.). Ageing: Ageism. World Health Organization. https://www.who.int/westernpacific/news/q-a-detail/ageing-ageism.

Agnostic: Someone who neither believes nor disbelieves in the existence of a deity;  the view that human reason is incapable of providing sufficient rational grounds to justify either the belief that a deity exists or the belief that a deity does not exist. Adapted from: Rowe, W. L. (1998). Agnosticism. In E. Craig (Ed.), Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy. London: Routledge.

Ally: a term often used to convey the position of those in the dominant group who work in coalition with oppressed others. Adapted from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Antisemitism (Anti-Semitism): "Semitic" originally referred to a family of languages that included Hebrew, and reflects the European racializing of “Semitic”, which was a linguistic category that included Arabic, Aramaic, and Hebrew. The term is now used to convey the cumulative force of global and historic religious, economic, and racial oppression of Jews as a religion, an ethnicity, a race, and a people. Adapted from:  Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.
 
Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities. From: U.S. Department of State. (2016, May 26. Defining Anti-Semitism. In Office of the Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism - U.S. Department of State. Retrieved July 15, 2021, from https://www.state.gov/defining-anti-semitism

Arab American: Refers to immigrants (and their descendents) from the Arabic-speaking countries of the Middle East and North Africa including the members of the Arab League ranging from Morocco in the west to Iraq in the east (this includes Algeria, Bahrain, Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen). Despite the diversity among these countries, they share a common historical experience, linguistic and cultural background, and political tradition that make them a distinct ethnic group. Adapted from: Kayyali, R. A. (2006, July 1). The People Perceived as a Threat to Security: Arab Americans Since September 11. In Migration Policy Institute. Retrieved June 12, 2014, from http://www.migrationpolicy.org/article/people-perceived-threat-security-arab-americans-september-11. Nigem, E. T. (1986). Arab Americans: Migration, Socioeconomic and Demographic Characteristics. International Migration Review, 20(3), 629-649.

Asian American: Refers to individuals living in the United States with Asian ancestry. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 164). Embrace Publications.

AsianCrit Theory: An analytical framework, based in Critical Race Theory, used for examining and understanding the ways in which racism affects the lives of Asian Americans in the United States. Source:  Museus, S. D. (2013). Asian American Students in Higher Education (pp. 19-28). New York: Routledge.

Atheist: The rejection of belief in the existence of deities. Adapted from:  Nielsen, Kai (2013). "Atheism". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved June 9, 2014. Edwards, Paul (2005) [1967]. Atheism. In The Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Vol. 1 (2nd ed.).New York:  MacMillan Reference USA.
 

B

Bias: An inclination or preference either for or against an individual or group that interferes with impartial judgment. Source: Anti-Defamation League,  Education Glossary Terms. Retrieved July 11, 2019, from https://www.adl.org/education/resources/glossary-terms/education-glossary-terms​

Bigotry: An unreasonable or irrational attachment to negative stereotypes and prejudices. Source: Anti-Defamation League,  Education Glossary Terms. Retrieved July 11, 2019, from https://www.adl.org/education/resources/glossary-terms/education-glossary-terms​

Biological/assigned sex: The physical, hormonal, and genetic characteristics that an individual is born with, and is the basis for assigning female or male sex at birth. The two categories of biological sex are male and female, although intersex individuals are born with male and female biological sex characteristics. Adapted from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Bisexuality: A person emotionally, romantically or sexually attracted to more than one sex, gender or gender identity though not necessarily simultaneously, in the same way or to the same degree. Sometimes used interchangeably with pansexual. Retrieved from: Glossary of terms. HRC. (n.d.). https://www.hrc.org/resources/glossary-of-terms.

C

Campus Climate: 1. Current attitudes, behaviors and standards of faculty, staff, administrators and students concerning the level of respect for individual needs, abilities and potential. 2. The institutional climate for diversity can be conceptualized as a product of various elements that include the historical (such as the institution’s history of access and exclusion), structural (include institutional characteristics such as size, control, selectivity, and racial composition of the college), perceptual (including the ideology of the institutions, institutional commitments to minority concerns and support for minority programs, the intent of the institution, perceptions of racial and interracial activity behavior on campus), and behavioral. Perceptions of the campus climate for diversity vary substantially by ethnic/racial group, reflecting student, faculty, staff, and administrators background characteristics and actual experiences across institutions. Source:  University of California Office of the President. (2014). What is campus climate? Why does it matter?  In Campus Climate Study. Retrieved June 9, 2014, from http://campusclimate.ucop.edu/what-is-campus-climate/. Adapted from: Hurtado, S. (1994). The institutional climate for talented Latino students. Research in Higher Education, 35(1), 21-41.

Christian Privilege: Christian privilege is the system of advantages bestowed upon Christians in some societies. This privilege arises out of the presumption of Christian belief as a social norm, leading to the exclusion of secular individuals and members of other religions through institutional religious discrimination as well as through neglect of outsider's cultural and religious practice and heritage. Adapted from: Blumenfeld, W. J. (2006). Christian Privilege and the Promotion of "Secular" and Not-So "Secular" Mainline Christianity in Public Schooling and in the Larger Society. Equity and Excellence in Education, 39(3), 195-210.

Cisgender:   A term used to describe a person whose gender identity aligns with those typically associated with the sex assigned to them at birth. Retrieved from: Glossary of terms. HRC. (n.d.). https://www.hrc.org/resources/glossary-of-terms.

Civil Rights: Personal liberties that belong to an individual, owing to his or her status as a citizen or resident of a particular country or community. Source: Group, G. (1997). Civil Rights. In West's Encyclopedia of American Law (2nd ed.). Eagan, MN: West Group Publishing.

Class: 1. Relative social rank in terms of income, wealth, status, and/or power. 2. Category or division based on economic status; members of a class are theoretically assumed to possess similar cultural, political and economic characteristics and principles. Adapted from: Leondar-Wright, B., & Yeskel, F. (2007). Classism Curriculum Design. In Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Classism: The institutional, cultural, and individual set of practices and beliefs that assign differential value to people according to their socio-economic class; and an economic system which creates excessive inequality and causes basic human needs to go unmet. Adapted from: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Appendix 13D: Definitions of Levels of Classism. In Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Collusion: Thinking and acting in ways which support the system of oppression. White people can actively collude by joining groups which advocate white supremacy. All people can collude by telling racist jokes, discriminating against a Person of Color, or remaining silent when observing a racist incident or remark. We believe that both Whites and People of Color can collude with racism through their attitudes, beliefs, and actions. Source: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Appendix 6B: Definitions of General Concepts II - Racism. In Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Color-blind ideology: Asserts that ending discrimination merely requires treating individuals as equally as possible, without regard to race, culture, or ethnicity. Color-blindness, by overlooking the cumulative and enduring ways in which race unequally shapes life chances and opportunities for people from different groups, actually reinforces and sustains an unequal status quo. Retrieved from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Covert Racism: Hidden and unacknowledged discrimination, in contrast to overt discrimination. Examples of covert racism include cultural and religious marginalization, color-blind racism, and tokenism. Cover racism is disguised with language intended to downplay the racial aspects of discrimination by involving “non-racial” explanations that are deemed more acceptable by broader society. Adapted from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Critical Race Feminism (CRF): An analytical framework that stems from several legal traditions including Critical Race Theory. CRF is anti-essentialist, arguing for a deeper understanding of the lives of women of color based on the multiplicity of their identities. CRF also emphasizes and integrates the ways in which race and gender function together to structure the lives of women of color. Source: Mertens, D. M., & Ginsberg, P. E. (Eds.). (2009). The Handbook of Social Research Ethics (pp. 59-60). London: Sage.

Critical Race Theory:  intellectual movement and loosely organized framework of legal analysis based on the premise that race is not a natural, biologically grounded feature of physically distinct subgroups of human beings but a socially constructed (culturally invented) category that is used to oppress and exploit people of color. Critical race theorists hold that the law and legal institutions in the United States are inherently racist insofar as they function to create and maintain social, economic, and political inequalities between whites and nonwhites, especially African Americans. Retrieved from: Encyclopedia Britannica, inc. (n.d.). Critical race theory. Encyclopedia Britannica. https://www.britannica.com/topic/critical-race-theory.

Cross-dressing: The act of dressing in clothes typically associated with another gender. This may be the extent of the gender-bending behavior, or it may be one step on a path of changing sex or gender. The words transvestite and transvestism have been used in the past to describe this activity or interest. Adapted from: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Appendix 9B: Answers to Gender and Sexuality Definitions Quiz. In Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Culture: An aggregate of many norms, expectations, attitudes, and behaviors that are expressed by individuals and institutions. Retrieved from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Cultural Competence: Cultural and linguistic competence is a set of congruent behaviors, attitudes, and policies that come together in a system, agency, or among professionals that enables effective work in cross-cultural situations. Source: National Education Association. Retrieved from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (n.d.). Cultural competence in health and Human Services. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://npin.cdc.gov/pages/cultural-competence.

D

Diaspora: A historical dispersion of a group of people deriving from similar origins, i.e. the African Diaspora includes African Americans, Africans, Caribbeans, Afro-Russians, Black Brazilians, Afro-Latinos etc. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 164). Embrace Publications.

Disability: An individual is considered to have a disability when social designs and the built environment do not account for the presence and participation of people with non-typical physical, emotional, intellectual, or social abilities and needs. Adapted from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group. Under U.S. Code § 12102, Disability is means, with respect to an individual (A) a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities of such individual; (B) a record of such an impairment; or C)being regarded as having such an impairment. Adapted from: Legal Information Institute. (n.d.). 42 U.S. Code § 12102 - definition of disability. Legal Information Institute. https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/42/12102.

Disadvantaged: 1. A historically oppressed group having less than sufficient financial, political and social resources to meet all of basic needs.  2. A group characterized by disproportionate economic, social, and political disadvantages. Source: University of Baltimore. (2014). Diversity and Culture Dictionary. In Diversity and Culture Center. Retrieved June 6, 2014, from http://www.ubalt.edu/campus-life/diversity-and-culture-center/diversity-dictionary.cfm

Discrimination: "The unequal allocation of goods, resources, and services, and the limitation of access to full participation in society based on individual membership in a particular social group; reinforced by law, policy, and cultural norms that allow for differential treatment on the basis of identity." Retrieved August 24, 2017, from National Conference for Community and Justice, Resources, Social Justice Definitions, https://nccj.org/resources/social-justice-definitions

Diversity: Refers to the variety of group experiences that result from the social structure of society. Diversity is a broad concept that includes differences in society’s opportunities, the shaping of social institutions by different social factors, the formation of group and individual identity, and the processes of social change. This includes race, class, gender, age, nationality, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, language, and region residence, among others. Adapted from : Andersen, Margaret, and Howard Taylor. Sociology: Understanding a Diverse Society. 4th ed. Belmont, CA: Thomas Wadsworth, 2008. 11. Print.

Dominant culture: The cultural group that controls the major aspects of social power, values, and norms within a society. Source: Garnets, L., & Kimmel, D. C. (Eds.). (1993). Psychological Perspectives on Lesbian and Gay Male Experiences (p. 605). New York: Columbia University Press.
 

E

Emigrant: One who leaves his/her country of origin to reside in a foreign country. Source: University of Baltimore. (2014). Diversity and Culture Dictionary. In Diversity and Culture Center. Retrieved June 6, 2014, from http://www.ubalt.edu/campus-life/diversity-and-culture-center/diversity-dictionary.cfm

Equality: Evenly distributed access to resources and opportunity necessary for a safe and healthy life; uniform distribution of access that may or may not result in equitable outcomes.From University of Houston, Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services. Retrieved from: https://uh.edu/cdi/diversity_education/resources/pdf/terms.pdf on September 24, 2020. 

Equity: Is the guarantee of fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement for all students, faculty, and staff, while at the same time striving to identify and eliminate barriers that have prevented the full participation of some groups. The principle of equity acknowledges that there are historically underserved and underrepresented populations and that fairness regarding these unbalanced conditions is needed to assist equality in the provision of effective opportunities to all groups. From University of Houston, Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services. Retrieved from: https://uh.edu/cdi/diversity_education/resources/pdf/terms.pdf on September 24, 2020. 

Essentialism: The practice of categorizing a group based on an artificial social construction that imparts an "essence" of that group, which homogenizes the group and effaces individuality and difference. Adapted from:  Garnets, L., & Kimmel, D. C. (Eds.). (1993). Psychological Perspectives on Lesbian and Gay Male Experiences (p. 606). New York: Columbia University Press

Ethnicity: A social construct that related to nationality, region, ancestry, shared culture, and language. Ethnicity is an attribution that signifies group affiliation with others who share values and ways of being. Adapted from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Ethnocentrism: A practice of unconsciously or consciously privileging a certain ethnic group over others. This involves judging other groups by the values of one's own group. Adapted from: Adams, M. (2007). Religious Oppression. In M. Adams, L. Bell, & P. Griffin (Eds.), Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed., pp. 249-254). New York: Routledge.

Eurocentrism: The practice of consciously or unconsciously privileging the culture of Europe over other cultures. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 166). Embrace Publications.

European American: An individual living in the United States with European ancestry. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 166). Embrace Publications.
 

F

Feminism: The valuing of women and the belief in and advocacy for social, political, and economic equality and liberation for both women and men. Feminism questions and challenges patriarchal social values and structures that serve to enforce and maintain men's dominance and women's subordination. Source: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (1997). Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (1st ed.). New York: Routledge.

Free Speech: Right, as stated in the 1st and 14th Amendments to the Constitution of the United States, to express information, ideas, and opinions free of government restrictions based on content. Source: Freedom of speech. (2013). In Britannica Concise Encyclopedia. Retrieved June 6, 2014, from http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/218543/freedom-of-speech

Fundamentalism: Movement with strict view of doctrine: a religious or political movement based on a literal interpretation of and strict adherence to doctrine, especially as a return to former principles. Adapted from: Adams, M. (2007). Religious Oppression. In M. Adams, L. Bell, & P. Griffin (Eds.), Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed., pp. 249-254). New York: Routledge.
 

G

Gay: Pertaining to male homosexuality. Adapted from: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Heterosexism and Curriculum Design. In Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Gender Expression: External appearance of one's gender identity, usually expressed through behavior, clothing, body characteristics or voice, and which may or may not conform to socially defined behaviors and characteristics typically associated with being either masculine or feminine. Retrieved from: Glossary of terms. HRC. (n.d.). https://www.hrc.org/resources/glossary-of-terms

Gender Identity: One’s innermost concept of self as man, woman, a blend of both or neither – how individuals perceive themselves and what they call themselves. One's gender identity can be the same or different from their sex assigned at birth. The spectrum of gender identities is much broader than the commonly recognized woman/man binary. Adapted from: Glossary of terms. HRC. (n.d.). https://www.hrc.org/resources/glossary-of-terms; Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Gender Pronouns: Often referred to as "preferred gender pronouns" or "PGPs". Often used during introductions, becoming more common as a standard practice. Many suggest removing the “preferred,” because it indicates flexibility and/or the power for the speaker to decide which pronouns to use for someone else. Retrieved June 24, 2020, from https://studentlife.tamu.edu/lgbtq/resources/ Adapted from: https://thesafezoneproject.com/resources/vocabulary/

Glass ceiling: A term that describes the maximum position and salary some claim marginalized people are allowed to reach without any chances of further promotion or advancement within an employment scenario. Adapted from:  Open Education Sociology Dictionary from https://sociologydictionary.org/glass-ceiling/

Global competency: The knowledge, skills, and abilities that help people from cross disciplinary domains to understand global events and respond to them effectively. As described by Reimers (2009), Global competency has three interdependent dimensions. The first approach considers cultural differences and a willingness to engage those differences (an important component of which is empathy for people with other cultural identities, an interest in seeking understanding of various civilizations and their histories, and the ability to see potential differences as opportunities for constructive and respectful interactions). Some argue that there is also an ethical dimension of global competency which includes a commitment to basic equality and the rights of all persons as well as an obligation to uphold those rights. The second dimension of global competency is the pragmatic aspect, which is the ability to speak, understand, and think in different languages. The third dimension involves extensive knowledge of world history, geography, and the global aspects of common issues such as: health care, climate change, economics, politics, education, among other issues. Adapted from: Reimers, F. M. (2009, September). Leading for Global Competency. Teaching for the 21st Century, 67(1).
 

H

Harassment: Unwanted conduct with the purpose or effect of violating the dignity of a person and of creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment based on their race, color, sex, sexual orientation, religion, national origin, disability, and/or age, among other things. Adapted from: Addison, N. (2007). Religious Discrimination and Hatred Law (p. 104). Abingdon, Oxon, UK: Routledge-Cavendish.

Hate: Intense hostility and aversion usually deriving from fear, anger, or sense of injury: extreme dislike or antipathy. Source:  Hate . (n.d.). In Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Retrieved June 6, 2014, from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hate

Hate Incident: Behavior which constitutes an expression of hostility against the person or property of another because of his/her difference. Such incidents include actions motivated by bias, but do not meet the necessary elements required to prove a crime. Adapted From: Association of Chief Police Officers. (2005, March). Hate Crime: Delivering a Quality Service - Good Practice and Tactical Guidance. Retrieved June 6, 2013, from https://www.bedfordshire.police.uk/information-and-services/Crime/Hate-crime-and-hate-incidents/Hate-crime-and-hate-incidents

Heterosexism: 1. Social structures and practices which serve to elevate and enforce heterosexuality while subordinating or suppressing other forms of sexuality. 2. Societal, cultural, institutional, and individual beliefs and practices that assume that heterosexuality is the only natural, normal, acceptable sexual orientation. Adapted from:  Griffin, P. (2007). Sexism, Heterosexism, and Transgender Oppression. In M. Adams, L. Bell, & P. Griffin (Eds.), Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed., pp. 167-172). New York: Routledge; Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 164). Embrace Publications.

Heterosexual: A person primarily emotionally, physically, and/or sexually attracted to members of the opposite sex. Adapted from: Sullivan, N. (2003). A Critical Introduction to Queer Theory (p. 119). New York: New York University Press.

Heterosexual Privilege: Those benefits and advantages heterosexuals or those perceived to be heterosexual, receive in a heterosexist culture. Source: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

HispanicHispanic origin can be viewed as the heritage, nationality, lineage, or country of birth of the person or the person’s parents or ancestors before arriving in the United States. People who identify as Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish may be any race. Source: Retrieved on 4/5/2017 from the United States Census Bureau https://www.census.gov/topics/population/hispanic-origin.html

Homophobia: The irrational fear of people who are believed to be lesbian, gay or bisexual. Source: Griffin, P., Hahn D'errico, K., Harro, B., & Schiff, T. (2007). Heterosexism Curriculum Design. In M. Adams, L. Bell, & P. Griffin (Eds.), Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed., pp. 195-218). New York: Routledge.

Homosexual: (Gay man/lesbian) A person primarily emotionally, physically and/or sexually attracted to members of the same sex. Adapted from: Green, E. R., & Peterson, E. N. (2006). LGBTTSQI Terminology. In Trans-Academics.org. Retrieved August 24, 2017 from the archived site.

Horizontal Hostility: The result of people of targeted groups believing, acting on, or enforcing the dominant system of discrimination and oppression. Horizontal hostility can occur between members of the same group or between members of different, targeted groups. Source: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.
 

I

Identity: The distinctive characteristic belonging to any given individual (self-identity), or shared by all members of a particular social category or group (such as national or cultural identity). Source: Rummens, J. (1993). Personal Identity and Social Structure in Sint Maarten/Saint Martin: A Plural Identities Approach. Doctoral Dissertation/Thesis: York University, Toronto, ON.

Ignorance: Lacking knowledge or comprehension of the thing specified:  Resulting from or showing lack of knowledge. Adapted from:  Ignorant . (n.d.). In Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Retrieved June 6, 2014, from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ignorant

Immigrant: Commonly determined by nationality and place of birth, immigrate refers to any individual who has ever migrated from their country of birth to their current country of residence, regardless of legal status. The term immigrant is often used interchangeably with the term foreign-born. Adapted from: The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development . (2007). Migration - Stocks of Immigrants. In OECD Factbook - Economic, Environmenal and Social Statistics. Retrieved June 16, 2014, from http://www.oecd.org/publications/factbook/38336539.pdf

Implicit Bias: Implicit biases are judgments and behaviors that are generally influenced by stereotypic social portrayals of different social groups or individuals or favorable or unfavorable past experiences. While implicit biases can operate consciously, these judgments and behaviors can also exist without (1) intention (i.e., are involuntary and uncontrollable), and (2) conscious awareness and thus may be nonconscious. Adapted from:  Rudman, L. A. (2004). Social justice in our minds, homes, and society: The nature, causes, and consequences of implicit bias. Social Justice Research,17(2), 129-142.

In The Closet: The closet has become a central category for grasping the history and social dynamics of gay life. This concept is intended to capture social patterns of secrecy and sexual self-management that structure the lives of ‘gay individuals’ in societies organized around a norm of heterosexuality. The concept of the closet is linked, perhaps inseparable from, the notion of ‘coming out’. The latter category refers to those who have 1) not accepted their sexuality or; 2) has not disclosed their sexuality to their friends, families and  acquaintances. Adapted from: Seidman,, S., Meeks, C., & Traschen, F. (1999). Beyond the Closet? The Changing Social Meaning of Homosexuality in the United States. Sexualities, 2(1), 9-34.

Indigenous Peoples: Individuals who identify as indigenous generally meet or have experienced  several of the following characteristics: 1) self-identification with indigenous peoples at the individual level and accepted by the indigenous community as their member; 2) historical continuity with pre-colonial and/or pre-settler societies; 3) strong link to territories and surrounding natural resources; 3) strong link to distinct social, economic or political systems; 4) distinct language, culture, and beliefs; 5) have been a part of a  non-dominant groups of society; and 6) resolve to maintain and reproduce their ancestral environments and systems as distinctive peoples and communities. Source: United Nations Permanent Forum of Indigenous Issues. (n.d.). Indigenous Peoples, Indigenous Voices - Factsheet. In United Nations. Retrieved June 12, 2014, from http://www.un.org/esa/socdev/unpfii/documents/5session_factsheet1.pdf

Inclusive: Open to everyone: not limited to certain people. Source: Inclusive . (n.d.). In Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Retrieved June 6, 2014, from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/inclusive

Institutional racism: The network of institutional structures policies, and practices that create advantages and benefits for dominant racial groups, and discrimination, oppression, and disadvantage for people from marginalized racial groups. The advantages created for dominant racial groups are often invisible to them, or are considered "rights" available to everyone as opposed to "privileges" awarded to only some individuals and groups. Adapted from: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Internalized Domination: When members of the agent group accept their group's socially superior status as normal and deserved. Adapted from: Bell, L. (2007). Theoretical Foundations for Social Justice Education. In M. Adams, L. Bell, & P. Griffin (Eds.), Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed., pp. 11-13). New York: Routledge.

Internalized Oppression: The result of people of targeted groups believing, acting on, or enforcing the dominant system of beliefs about themselves and members of their own group. Adapted from: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Internalized Subordination: When members of the target social group have adopted the agent group's ideology and accept their subordinate status as deserved, natural and inevitable. Adapted from: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Intersectionality (Intersectionalism): The idea that race and racism intersect with other social identities and forms of oppression, and position individuals and groups differently in the system of racism by virtue of gender, class, sexuality, ability, and other social markers. Intersectionality operates on both individual and institutional/systemic levels.  Retrieved from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Intolerance: Refusal to accept differences: unwillingness or refusal to accept people who are different from you, or views, beliefs, or lifestyles that differ from your own. Source:  Intolerance . (2004). In Encarta Webster's Dictionary of the English Language (2nd ed.) Bloomsbury USA.

Islamophobia: Unfounded hostility towards Muslims, and therefore fear or dislike of all or most Muslims Source: University of California, Berkeley. (n.d.). Defining "Islamophobia". In Center for Race and Gender. Retrieved June 9, 2014, from https://www.crg.berkeley.edu/research-projects/islamophobia-research-documentation-project/
 

J

 

K

 

L

Latino/a: 1. Often short for 'latinoamericano,’ Latino/Latina strictly refers to the people who come from or have heritage relating to the territories in the Americas colonized by Latin nations, such as Portugal, Spain, and France, whose languages are derived from Latin and now live in the United Sates. 2. A person of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race. Adapted from: Oquendo, A. R. (1995). Re-Imagining the Latino/a Race. Harvard BlackLetter Law Journal, 12, 96-97. Source: National Center for Education Statistics. (n.d.). Definitions for New Race and Ethnicity Categories. In Institute of Education Sciences. 

LatCrit Theory: An analytical framework, based in Critical Race Theory, used for examining and understanding the ways in which race and racism affects the lives of  Latinos in the United States. Adapted from: Valdés, F. (n.d.). LatCrit: A Conceptual Overview. In LatCrit - Latina and Latino Critical Legal Theory Inc.. Retrieved June 11, 2014, from http://latcrit.org/content/about/conceptual-overview/

Lesbian: A woman who is emotionally, romantically or sexually attracted to other women. Women and non-binary people may use this term to describe themselves. Retrieved from: Glossary of terms. HRC. (n.d.). https://www.hrc.org/resources/glossary-of-terms.

Linguicism: Refers to discrimination based particularly on language. Language oppression is often tied to discrimination based on race, ethnicity, and/or class. Adapted from:  Schniedewind, N., & Davidson, E. (1998). Open Minds to Equality: A Source Book of Learning Activities to Affirm Diversity and Promote Equality (2nd ed.) Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Skutnabb-Kongas, J. & Cummings, J. (1998). Minority Education: From Shame to Struggles. Clevedon, UK: Multicultural Matters.
 

M

Microaggression: deniable acts of racism that reinforce pathological stereotypes and inequitable social norms. Microaggressions are not based on the conscious intent of the offender or the perception of the target, but are related to often unconscious racial biases that are offensive to many and harmful to victims. Adapted from: Williams, M. T. (2019). Microaggressions: Clarification, evidence, and impact. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 15(1), 3–26. https://doi.org/10.1177/1745691619827499

Minority: Term used to describe a group that represents a relatively smaller percentage of the overall population of a nation/state/ continent etc. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 168). Embrace Publications.

Misogyny: A culturally bound phenomenon of hatred or contempt for women. Adapted from: Moloney, M. E., & Love, T. P. (2018). Assessing online misogyny: Perspectives from sociology and feminist media studies. Sociology Compass, 12(5). https://doi.org/10.1111/soc4.12577

Multiculturalism: The coming together of a variety of cultures within a space and time. Distinctions in culture can be expressed through language, religion, cuisine, family structure, lifestyles, and attire. The development of mass transportation, transnational industries, the internet, and increased immigration have allowed for an unprecedented convergence of cultures. Source: Davis, T., & Harrison, L. M. (2013). Advancing Social Justice: Tools, Pedagogies, and Strategies to Transform Your Campus (p. 2003). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Muslim: Is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion based on the Quran. Adapted from: Sultan, S. N., Ali, Y., & Smith, J. I. (2007). The Qurʼan and Sayings of Prophet Muhammad: Selections Annotated & Explained (p. 21). Woodstock, VT: Skylight Paths.
 

N

National Origin: System of classification based on nation from which a person originates, regardless of the nation in which he/she currently resides. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 168). Embrace Publications.

Nationality: The state of belonging to a particular country or being a citizen of a particular nation. Source: Nationality . (n.d.). In Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary.

Native American: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of North American or who maintains cultural identification through tribal affiliation of community recognition. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 168). Embrace Publications.

Neocolonialization: The survival of the colonial system in spite of formal recognition of political independence in former colonies in Asia, Africa, and the Americas which became victims of indirect and subtle form of domination by political, economic, social, military, or technical forces, generally disguised as humanitarian help or aid. The mechanisms of neo-colonialism are designed to serve the interest of continued economic and political dependence of former colonies by the former European colonial powers. Adapted from: Ghosh, P. (2013). International Relations (3rd ed.) Dheli, India: PHI Learning Private Limited. Melkote, R. S. and Rao, A. (1992). International Relations. New York: Sterling Publishers Private Unlimited.

Non-binary: An adjective describing a person who does not identify exclusively as a man or a woman. Non-binary people may identify as being both a man and a woman, somewhere in between, or as falling completely outside these categories. While many also identify as transgender, not all non-binary people do. Non-binary can also be used as an umbrella term encompassing identities such as agender, bigender, genderqueer or gender-fluid. Retrieved from: Glossary of terms. HRC. (n.d.). https://www.hrc.org/resources/glossary-of-terms.
 

O

Oppression: A systemic social phenomenon based on the perceived and real differences among social groups that involve ideological domination, institutional control and the promulgation of the oppressor's ideology, logic system, and culture to the oppressed group. The result is the exploitation of one social group by another for the benefit of the oppressor group. Source: Source: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (1997). Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (1st ed.). New York: Routledge.

Oriental: Relating to or deriving from the language, traditions, or cultures of the peoples of Asian nations in the region designated as "the Orient," or "the East," by Europeans. This term is conspicuously Eurocentric as "the East" is constructed as being opposed to a fixed reference point, "the West," or Western Europe. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 168). Embrace Publications.
 

P

Pan-Africanism: 1. Describes the theory relating to the desire to educate all peoples of the African Diaspora of their common plight and of the connections between them, e.g. a problem faced by one group affects the lives of other groups as well. 2. Theory relating to the desire to link all African countries across the continent through a common government, language, ideology, or belief. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 168). Embrace Publications.

Pansexual: Describes someone who has the potential for emotional, romantic or sexual attraction to people of any gender though not necessarily simultaneously, in the same way or to the same degree. Sometimes used interchangeably with bisexual. Retrieved from: Glossary of terms. HRC. (n.d.). https://www.hrc.org/resources/glossary-of-terms.

Passive racism: Beliefs, attitudes, and actions that contribute to the maintenance of racism, without openly advocating violence or oppression. The conscious and unconscious maintenance of attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors that support the system of racism, racial prejudice and racial dominance. Adapted from: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Appendix 6B: Definitions of General Concepts I - Racism. In Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Patriarchy: A social system in which cisgender and many trans men are positioned as the primary authority figures who occupy roles of political leadership, moral authority, and control of property. Retrieved from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

People of color: A term used to describe all non-white racial or ethnic groups. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 168). Embrace Publications.

Power (Social Power): Access to resources that enhance one’s chances of getting what one needs in order to lead a comfortable, productive and safe life. Retrieved August 24, 2017, from National Conference for Community and Justice, Resources, Social Justice Definitions, https://nccj.org/resources/social-justice-definitions

Prejudice: Refers to beliefs, thoughts, feelings, and attitudes that someone holds about a group. A prejudice is not based on experience; instead, it is a prejudgment, originating outside of actual experience. Source: OpenStax College - Rice University. (2013). Stereotypes, Prejudice, and Discrimination. In Introduction to Sociology (pp. 230-231). Houston, TX: Rice University.

Privilege, or Unearned Racial Advantage: Unearned benefits or advantages white people receive that are denied to or at the expense of people of color. This is the result of the social hierarchy that reaps that advantages of racism. Adapted from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Q

Queer:  A term people often use to express a spectrum of identities and orientations that are counter to the mainstream. Queer is often used as a catch-all to include many people, including those who do not identify as exclusively straight and/or folks who have non-binary or gender-expansive identities. This term was previously used as a slur, but has been reclaimed by many parts of the LGBTQ movement. Retrieved from: Glossary of terms. HRC. (n.d.). https://www.hrc.org/resources/glossary-of-terms.
 

R

Race: A social construction that has material and psychological consequences in the lives of people from different racialized groups. Social construction signified that “race” is invented by humans, not a biological reality. Adapted from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Race-Consciousness: Signifies being mindful of the impact of policies and practices on different racialized groups in our society. Race-consciousness can motivate a desire to become informed about how injustice occurs and to be intentional about seeking redress. Retrieved from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Racism: A pervasive system of advantage and disadvantage based on the socially constructed category of race. Race is enacted on the institutional, cultural, interpersonal, and individual levels. Institutional structures, policies, and cultural assumptions interlock to justify racism and structure discrimination, oppression, dispossession, and exclusion for people from targeted racial groups while maintaining systemic benefits for whites as a group. Adapted from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Religion: A system of beliefs, values, and practices concerning what a person holds to be sacred or spiritually significant. Source: OpenStax College - Rice University. (2013). Introduction to Religion. In Introduction to Sociology (pp. 336). Houston, TX: Rice University.

S

Scapegoating: The action of blaming an individual or group for something when, in reality, there is no one person or group responsible for the problem. It targets another person or group as responsible for problems in society because of that person's group identity. Souce: Anti-Defamation League. (2014). 101 Ways to Combat Prejudice: Developing a Common Language. In Anti-Defamation League. Retrieved June 4, 2014, from http://archive.adl.org/prejudice/prejudice_terms.html

Sexism: Refers to the social, cultural, political, and educational subordination of one sex by another and can also refer to the unequal distribution of power and resources between men and women, both because of gender. Adapted from: Rothenberg, P. S. (2004). Race, Class, and Gender in the United States: An Integrated Study (6th ed., pp. 162-163). New York: Worth Publishers.

Sexual orientation: a person’s predominant sexual and emotional attractions toward someone of the same or different sex and/or gender identity. Sexual orientation has historically been described as an innate and unchangeable characteristic, a fluid behavioral choice, and an identity that must be viewed in historical and cultural context. Adapted from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Social Constructionism: is a theory of knowledge that holds that characteristics typically thought to be immutable and solely biological—such as gender, race, class, ability, and sexuality—are products of human definition and interpretation shaped by cultural and historical contexts. Retrieved from: Kang, M., Lessard, D., Heston, L., & Nordmarken, S. (2017, June 30). Social constructionism. Introduction to Women Gender Sexuality Studies. https://openbooks.library.umass.edu/introwgss/chapter/social-constructionism/.

Social Justice: Involves a vision of society in which distribution of resources is equitable and all members are physically and psychologically safe and secure, the goal of which is full and equal participation of all groups in society that is mutually shaped to meet their needs. Also involves social actors who have a sense of their own agency as well as a sense of social responsibility toward and with others, their society, and the broader world. Source: Bell, L. (2007). Theoretical Foundations for Social Justice. In M. Adams, L. Bell, & P. Griffin (Eds.), Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Stereotype: A preconceived or oversimplified generalization about an entire group of people without regard for their individual differences. While often negative, stereotypes may also be complimentary. Yet even positive stereotypes can have a negative impact and can feed into prejudice. Source: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Stereotype threat: the fear of confirming negative stereotypes about one’s racial, ethnic, gender, or cultural group. The term was coined by Steel and Aronson (1995), whose research showed that Black college students performed worse than white peers on standardized tests when told, before taking the tests, that their racial group tends to do poorly on such exams. When race was not emphasized, however, Black students performed similarly to white peers. Like microaggressions, stereotype threat exists because of racism in broader society. Retrieved from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Systemic racism: Racial discrimination in an array of major institutional areas, including employment, housing, education, health care, recreation, politics, policing, and public accommodations. Systemic racism involves the deep structures and surface structures of racial oppression including anti-other practices; unjustly gained economic/political power; economic and other resource inequalities along racial lines (unjust enrichment/unjust impoverishment); and the persisting racial hierarchy and racial framing to rationalize privilege and power. Systemic racism is a material, social, racially-framed reality manifested in all major institutions and over four-plus centuries of U.S. history. Source: Feagin, J.R. (2006). Systemic racism: A theory of oppression. New York: Routledge.

T

Tolerance: Acceptance and open-mindedness to different practices, attitudes, and cultures; does not necessarily mean agreement with the differences. Source: Parvis, L. (2013). Understanding Cultural Diversity in Today's Complex World (5th ed., p. 168). Embrace Publications.

Transgender: An umbrella term for people whose gender identity and/or expression is different from cultural expectations based on the sex they were assigned at birth. Being transgender does not imply any specific sexual orientation. Therefore, transgender people may identify as straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, etc. Retrieved from: Glossary of terms. HRC. (n.d.). https://www.hrc.org/resources/glossary-of-terms

Transphobia: A pathological fear or hatred of trans* people or anyone whose gender identity or gender expression defies cultural expectations. Retrieved from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.

Transsexual: Someone who wants to, intends to, or has begun to pursue some physical change to his/her body, in an effort to align the physical body with one's gender identity, and identifies with this term. This is an identity that must be claimed as one's own; it should not be imposed upon people. FtM (female to male or female toward male): born female but see themselves as partly to fully male. MtF (male to female or male toward female): born male but see themselves as partly to fully female. Source: Adams, M., Bell, L., & Griffin, P. (2007). Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Tribal Critical Race Theory (TribalCrit): An analytical framework, based in Critical Race Theory, used for examining and understanding the ways in which race, racism, and colonization affects the lives of indigenous people in the United States. Adapted from: McKinley Jones Brayboy, B. (2005, December). Toward a Tribal Critical Race Theory in Education. The Urban Review, 37(5), 425-446.

U

 

V

Violence: Intense, turbulent, or furious and often destructive action or force: vehement feeling or expression: the use of physical force so as to injure, abuse, damage, or destroy. Adapted from:  Violence . (n.d.). In Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Retrieved July 12, 2021, from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/violence
 

W

White Supremacy: The belief system that rationalizes and reproduces unearned white advantages in the political, social, and cultural institutions in society at the expense of people of color. This belief system holds that white people, white culture, and things associated with whiteness are superior to those of other racial groups. It assumes as normal and rational that the interests and perceptions of white individuals are central in society. The racial ideology of white supremacy may be unexamined and unconscious, unlike overt white supremacist groups. Adapted from: Adams, M., & Bell, L. A. (2016). Teaching for diversity and social justice. Taylor & Francis Group.
 

X - Y - Z

Xenophobe: A person unduly fearful of what is foreign and especially of people of foreign origin. Retrieved from:  Xenophobe . (n.d.). In Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Retrieved July 12, 2021 from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/xenophobe

Xenophobia: Fear and hatred of strangers or foreigners or of anything that is strange or foreign. Source: Xenophobia . (n.d.). In Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Retrieved June 12, 2021, from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/xenophobia

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