Glossary

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  1. Ableism

    A form of discrimination or social prejudice against people with disabilities (mental, physical, or otherwise). Typically supported by structures, practices, cultural ideologies and built space.
  2. Ace

    A popular nickname (or a phonetic shortened term) for a person who is asexual, or who has little or no sexual attraction or sexual desire. The term has led to some symbolism regarding the playing card, “ace.” Aromantic asexuals use the ace of spades, while romantic asexuals use the ace of hearts as a symbolic representation of their sexual inclination.
  3. Adverse Impact

    A substantially different rate of selection in hiring, promotion, transfer, training or other employment-related decisions for any race, sex or ethnic group in comparison with other groups.
  4. Affirmative Action

    A strategy for pursuing equal opportunity for individuals, and diversity for organizations, through outreach in recruitment, development, and retention programs. Organizations employ affirmative action to engage in fair employment practices, and redress past inequities. Affirmative action is required by EO 11246.
  5. Ageism

    Stereotyping and discriminating against individuals or groups because of their age.
  6. Agents of Oppression

    Agents of oppression are members of the dominant social groups in the United States, privileged by birth or acquisition, which knowingly or unknowingly exploit and reap unfair advantage over members of groups that are targets of oppression. Agents of oppression are also trapped by the system of institutionalized oppression that benefits them and are confined to roles and prescribed behaviors. In United States culture, agents have the power to define the “norm” for what is reality and they see themselves as normal or proper, whereas targets are likely to be labeled as deviant, evil, abnormal, substandard, or defective.
  7. Anti-Black Racism

    The erasure of Blackness coupled with the systematic marginalizing of Black people through structures, policies and ideologies. It highlights the particular nature and history of enslaved and colonized people of Black-African descent in the United States and other countries.
  8. Anti-Racism Work

    The active process of identifying and eliminating racism by changing systems, organizational structures, policies and practices and attitudes, so that power is redistributed and shared equitably. Anti-Racism work involves racial healing, harm transformation, reconciliation, and restoration.
  9. Bias

    An inclination, preference or prejudice in favor or against an individual or group compared with another, usually in a way considered to be unfair, that interferes with impartial judgment.
  10. Bigotry

    The characterization and actions of someone who, as a result of their prejudices, treats other people with hatred, contempt, or intolerance on the basis of a person's identity.
  11. Cisgender

    Often shortened to "cis" - Denotes or relates to a person whose sense of personal identity and gender corresponds with their birth sex.
  12. Cissexism

    The belief that transgender people are inherently inferior to cisgender people. It may or may not be conscious or deliberate on the part of the people expressing or feeling it. It is supported by structures, policies, practices and cultural ideologies.
  13. Classism

    Prejudice or discrimination on the basis of social class. It includes individual attitudes and behaviors, systems of policies and practices that are set up to benefit the upper classes at the expense of the lower classes and is often related to socio-economic status.
  14. Coercion

    Conduct, intimidation, and express or implied threats of physical or emotional harm that would reasonably place an individual in fear of immediate or future harm and that is employed to persuade or compel someone to engage in sexual contact. Also see “force.”
  15. Color-Blind

    Traditionally referring to the physical condition that affects partial or total inability to distinguish one or more chromatic color, the term also refers to a sense of not being influenced by differences of race or the equal treatment of all people the same regardless of race. It often suggest a failure or refusal to acknowledge or address the many racial inequities that exist in society, or to acknowledge important aspects of racial identity.
  16. Complicity

    Any act that knowingly aids, facilitates, promotes, or encourages prohibited conduct by another person.
  17. Consent

    The communication of an affirmative, conscious, and freely made decision by each participant to engage in agreed upon forms of sexual contact. Consent requires an outward demonstration, through understandable words or actions, that conveys a clear willingness to engage in sexual contact. Also see “incapacitation.”
  18. Cultural Appropriation

    The adoption of some specific elements of one culture by a different cultural group. In this context it often implies a negative or careless view towards the minority group. It can include the introduction of forms of dress or personal adornment, music and art, religion, language, or social behavior. These elements, once removed from their indigenous cultural contexts, can take on meanings that are significantly divergent from, or less nuanced than, those they originally held.
  19. Discrimination

    Any unlawful distinction, preference, or detriment to an individual as compared to others that is based on an individual’s protected status. The prejudicial/distinguishing treatment of an individual based on their actual or perceived membership in a certain group or category (e.g. race, ethnicity, age, sex, gender, religion, etc.) in a negative way or restricting members of one group from opportunities or privileges that are available to another group, leading to the exclusion of the individual or entities based on illogical or irrational decision making.
  20. Disparity

    A noticeable and usually significant difference or dissimilarity. It is often interpreted in reference to race or ethnicity, but it can be applied to a variety of societal inequalities.
  21. Ethnicity

    The fact or state of belonging to a social group that has a common national or cultural tradition.
  22. Force

    Conduct, intimidation, and express or implied threats of physical or emotional harm, that would reasonably place an individual in fear of immediate or future harm and that is employed to persuade or compel someone to engage in sexual contact. Also see “coercion.”
  23. Gender Dysphoria

    Describes a sense of unease that a person may have because of a mismatch between their biological sex and their gender identity.
  24. Gender Expression

    Also Gender Presentation - A person's behavior, mannerisms, interests, and appearance that are associated with gender in a particular cultural context, specifically with the categories of femininity or masculinity. This also includes gender roles. These categories rely on stereotypes about gender.
  25. Gender-Fluid

    Of, or relating to, or being a person whose gender identity is not fixed. It often refers to a change over time in a person's gender expression, gender identity, or both. The change may be in expression, but not identity, or in identity, but not expression, or the change might be in both expression and identity together.
  26. Harassment

    A type of discrimination that occurs when verbal, physical, electronic, or other conduct based on an individual’s protected status interferes with that person’s educational environment, work environment, participation in a university program or activity, or access to legitimately requested services.
  27. Heteronormativity

    The body of norms that hold that people fall into distinct, binary and complementary genders (men and women) with distinct roles in life. It presumes that heterosexuality is the only sexual orientation or only norm. Consequently, this view is one that involves alignment of biological sex, sexuality, gender identity, and gender roles.
  28. Homophobia

    Encompasses a range of negative attitudes and feelings toward people who identify or are perceived as being lesbian, gay, bisexual (LGB) or other non-heterosexual identities.
  29. Hostile environment harassment

    Unwelcome conduct based on protected status that is so severe, persistent, or pervasive that it alters the conditions of education, employment, or participation in a university program or activity, thereby creating an environment that a reasonable person in similar circumstances and with similar identities would find hostile, intimidating, or abusive.
  30. Incapacitation

    The state of being asleep, unconscious, intermittently conscious, or otherwise unable to consent to sexual contact.
  31. Interpersonal violence

    Physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that a reasonable person in similar circumstances and with similar identities would find intimidating, frightening, terrorizing, or threatening.
  32. Intersectionality

    The interconnected nature of social categorizations such as race, class, gender, and other characteristics as they apply to a given individual or group, regarded as creating overlapping and interdependent systems of discrimination or disadvantage.
  33. LGBTQQIP2SAA

    Stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, queer, intersex, pansexual, two-spirit (2S), androgynous and asexual.
  34. Microaggressions

    Brief and commonplace/daily verbal, behavioral, or environmental indignities, whether intentional or unintentional, that communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative slights and insults toward people related to their identity. These aggressions create weathering and trauma.
  35. Misogyny

    Dislike of, aversion to, hatred or contempt for, or ingrained prejudice against women.
  36. Power

    The ability or capacity to act or do something effectively.

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