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the belief that inanimate objects, such as trees, rocks, and rivers, possess souls

Ethnic Religion

a religion identified with a particular ethnic or tribal group; does not seek to converts.


community faith in traditional societies in which people follow their shaman--- a religious leader, teacher, healer, and visionary. At times, an especially strong shaman might attract a regional following. However, most shamans remain local figures.


the idea that ethical and moral standards should be formulated and adhered to for life on Earth, not to accommodate the prescriptions of a deity and promises of a comfortable afterlife.

Sharia Law

the system of Islamic law, sometimes called Qu'ranic law, unlike most Western systems of law that are based on legal precedence, it is based on varying degrees of interpretation of the Qu'ran.


a state whose government is under the control of a ruler who is deemed to be divinely guided, or of a group of religious leaders, as in post-Kohomeini Iran. It's opposite is a secular state.


religions that attempt to be global, to appeal to all people, wherever they may live in the world, not just to those of one culture or location


the adoption by an ethnic group of enough of the ways of the host society to be able to function economically and socially.

Adaptive Strategy

the unique way in which each culture uses its particular physical environment; those aspects of culture that serve to provide the necessities of life--- food, clothing, shelter, and defense.


the complete blending of an ethnic group into the host society, resulting in the loss of all distinctive ethnic traits.


Spanish word for neighborhood; barriozation - the dramatic increase in Hispanic population in a given neighborhood.

Chain Migration

the tendency of people to migrate among channels, over a period of time, from specific source areas to specific destinations.

Cultural Adaptation

the complex strategies human groups employ to live successfully as part of a natural system.

Cultural Shatterbelt

a zone of great cultural complexity containing many small cultural groups.

Ethnic Cleansing

process in which more powerful ethnic group forcibly removes a less powerful one in order to create an ethnically homogeneous region.


a piece of territory surrounded by , but not part of a country.

Ethnic Enclave

a ethnic group surrounded by another ethnic group.

Ethnic Group

a group of people who share a common ancestry and cultural tradition, often living as a minority in a larger society.

Ethnic Homeland

a sizable area inhabited by an ethnic minority that exhibits a strong sense of attachment to the region and often exercises some measure of political and social control over it.

Ethnic Island

a small ethnic area in the rural countryside; sometimes called a "folk island."

Ethnic Neighborhood

a voluntary community where people of like origin reside by choice.


affiliation or identify within a group of people bound by common ancestry and culture.


the attitude that one's own race and culture are superior to others.


a piece of national territory separated from the main body of a country by the territory of another country.


traditionally, an area within a city where an ethnic group lives, either by choice or by force. Today, in the United States, the term typically indicated an impoverished African-American urban neighborhood.

Plural Society

a society combining ethnic contrasts; each group holds by its own religion, its own culture and language, its own ideas and ways


identity with a group of people descended from a common ancestor.


the spatial separation of specific population sub-groups within a wider population.

Social Distance

a measure of the perceived degree of social separation between individuals, ethnic groups, neighborhoods, or other groupings; the voluntary or enforced segregation of two or more distinct social groups for most activities.

Dowry Death

in the context of arranged marriages in India, disputes over the price to be paid by the family o the bride to the father of the groom have, in some extreme cases, led to the death of the bride.


to admit to the privileges of a citizen and especially to the right of suffrage; to admit (a municipality) to political privileges or rights


the social differences between men and women rather than the anatomical differences that are related to sex.

Gender Gap

the social differences between men and women rather than the anatomical differences that are related to sex.


the killing of an infant.

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