Ethnic group

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An ethnic group (or ethnicity) is a group of people whose members identify with each other, through a common heritage, often consisting of a common language, a common culture (often including a shared religion) and an ideology that stresses common ancestry or endogamy.[1][2] [3]

Members of an ethnic group are conscious of belonging to an ethnic group; moreover ethnic identity is further marked by the recognition from others of a group's distinctiveness. Processes that result in the emergence of such identification are called ethnogenesis.


Terminology and definition

The terms ethnicity and ethnic group are derived from the Greek word ἔθνος ethnos, normally translated as "nation." The terms refer currently to people thought to have common ancestry who share a distinctive culture.

The term "ethnic" and related forms from the 14th century through the middle of the 19th century were used in English in the meaning of "pagan, heathen", as ethnikos was used as the LXX translation of Hebrew goyim "the nations, non-Hebrews, non-Jews".[4]

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