Distinction made (social, economic, political, or legal) between individuals or groups such that one has the power to treat the other unfavourably. Negative discrimination
, often based on stereotype
, includes anti-Semitism, caste, racism
, and slavery. Positive discrimination
, or affirmative action
, is sometimes practised in an attempt to counteract the effects of previous long-term negative discrimination. Minorities and, in some cases, majorities have been targets for discrimination.
Discrimination may be on grounds of difference of colour, nationality, religion, politics, culture, class, sex, age, or a combination of such factors. Legislation has been to some degree effective in forbidding racial discrimination
, against which there is a United Nations convention of 1969.
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