Terminology to Know as a Social Justice Activist (June 2020)

Screenshot 2023-02-01 at 11.39.36 AM.png

Dublin Core


Terminology to Know as a Social Justice Activist (June 2020)






Definitional slideshow explaining concepts like prejudice, discrimination, oppression, intersectionality, representation, race, micro aggressions, cultural appropriation








Matthew Salzano

Instagram Slideshow Item Type Metadata



Text Transcription

1. Terminology to know as a social justice activist

2. 01 Prejudice vs. Discrimination vs. Oppression
A judgment or belief that is formed on insufficient grounds before facts are known or in disregard of facts that contradict it. Prejudices are learned and can be unlearned.
Discrimination is the acting out of prejudice. This results in 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.
To "hold down" a group of people by harnessing prejudice and discrimination within legal. social, and day to day contexts that are rooted in historical, institutional, ideological, and structural forms of power.

3. 02 Systemic vs. Systematic Oppression
Oppression occurring throughout the societies, based on institutionalized laws and/or procedures.
Oppressive actions or behaviors which occur methodically or in an organized manner - again based
on institutionalized laws and/or procedures.
These types of oppression are often also referred to as "structural" and "institutional" and generally speak to the large scale nature and reinforcement of the issue

4. 03 Intersectionality
The idea that multiple identities, or social categories, and power structures, or disadvantages, are
affecting a person at the same time - identities include: race, gender, social class, ability, sexual orientation, etc.
• I am BOTH Black and a woman
• I am a gay, White male
• I am an upper class, Asian American female
• I am a Black man with a permanent disability

5. 04 Over vs Under Representation
A situation where a racial group has a number of its members in some condition in greater numbers (overrepresentation) or were (underrepresentation) than their population would suggest.
Overrepresentation: Black men are overly represented in the criminal justice system
-13% of US population identifies as Black, while 38% of inmates identify as Black
Underrepresentation: People of Color are disproportionately absent in mainstream and prominent movies and TV shows

6. 05 Race vs. Ethnicity
Racial classifications are socially constructed and externally imposed, involuntary, and usually based on physical differences (such as skin color or facial features) or assumed regional origins (such as Africa, Asia, Europe, etc.)
Example: Black, White, 'African American', Pacific Islander
Self- or group-motivated communities sharing communities sharing common or specific ancestry and cultural practices, usually associated to a geographic region or religious affiliation.
Example: Italian, Irish, Pacific Islander is a racial category - Pacific Islander ethnic group would be Samoan.

7. 06 [Racial] Micro-aggressions
Everyday, negative, and derogatory slurs, slights, or insults, both verbal and nonverbal, aimed at people of color based on their received race. Microaggressions are rooted in stereotypes or false assumptions made about a person's race and are often not detected by dominant groups as "racist."
• "You speak so well for a black person"
• "So where are you REALLY from?"
• Speaking slowly to a Person of Color
• Assuming a Person of Color does/can not speak English
• Failing to learn to correctly pronounce a person's name after being corrected

8. 07 Cultural Appropriation
Cultural appropriation is the act of taking on or adopting elements of a group's culture by those outside of it. On the surface, it can be perceived as a form of cultural exchange between groups. However, this act can become problematic when cultural elements are adopted inaccurately or stereotypically, done without proper consent or acknowledgement from the original group, or exploited by those in power typically for profit.
The Kardashian family can often be seen exaggerating aspects of Black femininity for aesthetic pleasure and for profiteering purposes, especially those which were once demonized by popular culture on Black women
i.e. corn row hair, durag hair style, exaggerated lips

9. 08 Color-blind Racism
The false concept that ignoring race and racial differences erases "racism" and promotes racial equality and harmony between racial groups. This type of racism ignores the institutional nature of racism and is difficult to detect as it allows dominant groups to protect their own interests without "sounding racist".
• "I don't see color"
• "I don't see people as Black or Brown"
• Actively avoiding conversations about race because it is "inappropriate"

Instagram caption

As the conversations of racial injustice continue, it is crucial that we all prioritize learning in order to create both internal and external change. •
We have been privileged enough to spend extensive time on our educations and on these topics and feel compelled to share information and help lay a foundation for key concepts where they are needed. Given the significant influx in information circulating on social media, we have collectively put together a basic terminology guide to help us educate ourselves about the issues we are witnessing and the injustice being experienced first hand. •
We have committed our lives to the fight against injustice and we thank each of those who have laid down before us so that we may stand tall. We especially thank all those who contributed to this guide and to our own understanding of these issues. •
We will continue to share more information and add to this guide as we can. We welcome any and all conversation that may arise from these words and hope to engage in our communities and with each one of you as we expand our own educations. • #blacklivesmatter
@julliiaamarieee @nicolemjeffrey @cdough08

Image Description

Multicolor slideshow, opening image features two hands (of two different shades) with painted nails interlacing their fingers.

Number of likes on post


Number of followers on account



@juliaorjula, “Terminology to Know as a Social Justice Activist (June 2020),” Instagram Slideshow Archive, accessed December 6, 2023, https://instagramslideshows.omeka.net/items/show/19.