marginalize

verb
mar·​gin·​al·​ize | \ ˈmärj-nə-ˌlīz How to pronounce marginalize (audio) , ˈmär-jə-nᵊl-ˌīz\
marginalized; marginalizing

Definition of marginalize

transitive verb

: to relegate (see relegate sense 2) to an unimportant or powerless position within a society or group We are protesting policies that marginalize women.

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Other Words from marginalize

marginalization \ ˌmärj-​nə-​lə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce marginalization (audio) , ˌmär-​jə-​nᵊl-​ə-​ \ noun

Marginalized Writing vs. Marginalized People

Marginalize provides a striking case of how thoroughly the figurative use of a word can take over the literal one. The original (and now obsolete) meaning of this word, “to write notes in the margin of,” is analogous to the still-familiar noun marginalia “marginal notes or embellishments." A margin is, of course, the blank space surrounding the text in a book. Just prior to 1970, marginalize took on the sense that is most commonly encountered today, “to relegate to an unimportant or powerless position” (that is, to the metaphorical margins of society). This use of the word can be found as far back as 1968; an article in The Los Angeles Times from June 20th of that year reports, “[T]he Negro was kept aside, marginalized, thus composing in its large majority the chronically poor.” In its newer sense, marginalize has assumed a much more prominent place in the vocabulary than it once had.

Examples of marginalize in a Sentence

The program helps people from marginalized groups.

Recent Examples on the Web

Particularly at risk to be pigeonholed and marginalized are women, introverts, introverts of color, and immigrants who may be bringing non-majority cultural norms to the workplace. Ellen Mcgirt, Fortune, "Feliz #HispanicHeritageMonth: raceAhead," 16 Sep. 2019 If visitors wanted to climb the rock, who were the Aboriginals, Australia’s maligned and marginalized indigenous people, to stop them? National Geographic, "Why Australia is banning climbers from this iconic natural landmark," 15 Sep. 2019 The result was a familiar combination of candidate cross-talk, beat-the-clock sound bites and marginalized hopefuls disappearing for long stretches of time. Los Angeles Times, "7 takeaways from the Democratic debate in Houston," 12 Sep. 2019 Sykes lost his radio show and is now among the embittered, marginalized refugees at the anti-Trump Bulwark. Peter Spiliakos, National Review, "The Simpsons and the Cowardice of Tribal Comedy," 28 Aug. 2019 Jason was marginalized by his blackness and gayness, but Kitty Kunt was black, gay, trans and homeless. Joey Nolfi, EW.com, "See RuPaul, Bianca Del Rio, more in exclusive excerpts from Drag: The Complete Story book," 16 Sep. 2019 As a woman whose partner is WNBA star and Nuggets front-office staffer Sue Bird, Rapinoe has eloquently expressed why the LGBTQ community feels marginalized by president Donald Trump. Mark Kiszla, The Denver Post, "Kickin’ It with Kiz: Is soccer star Megan Rapinoe or president Donald Trump a better representative of American ideals?," 29 June 2019 The Monkees have enjoyed a recent boost in regard after years of being marginalized by rock snobs. Andrew Dansby, Houston Chronicle, "A Monkee's Houston homecoming," 5 June 2018 Lake Turkana Wind Power is part of a wider trend for large scale infrastructure projects in historically marginalized, pastoralist regions, including oil exploration in Kenya’s Turkana County and the Gilgel Gibe 3 Dam on the Omo River in Ethiopia. Zoe Cormack, Quartz Africa, "Kenya’s huge wind power project might be great for the environment but not for local communities," 3 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'marginalize.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of marginalize

1968, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for marginalize

Last Updated

23 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for marginalize

The first known use of marginalize was in 1968

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More Definitions for marginalize

marginalize

verb

English Language Learners Definition of marginalize

: to put or keep (someone) in a powerless or unimportant position within a society or group

More from Merriam-Webster on marginalize

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with marginalize

Britannica English: Translation of marginalize for Arabic Speakers

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