minority

noun, often attributive
mi·​nor·​i·​ty | \ mə-ˈnȯr-ə-tē How to pronounce minority (audio) , mī-, -ˈnär- \
plural minorities

Definition of minority

1a : the period before attainment of majority (see majority sense 2)
b : the state of being a legal minor
2 : the smaller in number of two groups constituting a whole specifically : a group having less than the number of votes necessary for control The proposition was opposed by a minority of voters.
3a : a part of a population differing from others in some characteristics and often subjected to differential treatment the country's ethnic minorities
b : a member of a minority group an effort to hire more minorities

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Synonyms for minority

Synonyms

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Examples of minority in a Sentence

The proposal is opposed by a minority of voters. The Republicans are now the minority in the Senate. The group is becoming an influential minority in the community.
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Recent Examples on the Web Experts and activists from both communities predicted that Harris, the daughter of an Indian mother and Jamaican father, would rally minority voters and keep them engaged in the political process. N'dea Yancey-bragg, USA TODAY, "Kamala Harris' VP win marks 'powerful, emotional' moment for African American and South Asian-American women," 7 Nov. 2020 But this core strategy was one that relied far less on minority voters and Latinos in particular, than one that might have actually won states like Texas and Florida. Osita Nwanevu, The New Republic, "Will the Democrats Ever Make Sense of This Week?," 6 Nov. 2020 The selection of Harris, who was born to immigrants from Jamaica and India, energized minority voters, especially among Black women. Niraj Warikoo, Detroit Free Press, "Black voters in Detroit key for Joe Biden and Gary Peters' victories, advocates say," 6 Nov. 2020 Rodriguez is one of dozens of health care volunteers who are part of a new civic engagement campaign to increase voter turnout among low-income and minority residents. Andrea Lopez-villafaña, San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego health pros use trust, relationships to build voter turnout," 30 Oct. 2020 Education researchers said school closures because of COVID-19 will have a greater effect on low-income and minority students. Nyamekye Daniel, Washington Examiner, "North Carolina legislative leaders back state in school-choice lawsuit," 27 Oct. 2020 The problem is most critical for single-parent, low-income and minority households. David R. Henderson And Ryan Sullivan, WSJ, "End the School Shutdown," 20 Oct. 2020 But critics said the council’s plan to recoup the overdue fines has the potential to exacerbate financial instability within some communities, particularly among the region’s low-income and minority residents. Washington Post, "Maryland and Virginia drivers owe D.C. more than $370 million in outstanding traffic and parking fines," 4 Oct. 2020 For some students, particularly those from low-income and minority families, the financial and logistical challenges posed by the pandemic were too much to overcome. Oliver Staley, Quartz, "College enrollments are falling in the US—except for graduate degrees," 28 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'minority.' 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 minority

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for minority

Time Traveler

The first known use of minority was in the 15th century

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Statistics for minority

Last Updated

17 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Minority.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/minority. Accessed 28 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for minority

minority

noun
How to pronounce minority (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of minority

: a number or amount that is less than half of a total
: the group that is the smaller part of a larger group
: a group of people who are different from the larger group in a country, area, etc., in some way (such as race or religion)

minority

noun
mi·​nor·​i·​ty | \ mə-ˈnȯr-ə-tē How to pronounce minority (audio) \
plural minorities

Kids Definition of minority

1 : the state of not being old enough to have the full rights of an adult
2 : a number less than half of a total The proposal is opposed by a minority of voters.
3 : a group that makes up a smaller part of a larger group The animals affected are a minority.
4 : a part of a population that is in some ways (as in race or religion) different from others

minority

noun
mi·​nor·​i·​ty
plural minorities

Legal Definition of minority

1a : the period before attainment of majority
b : the state of being a minor
2 : the smaller of two groups constituting a whole: as
a : a group (as in a legislative body) having less than the number of votes necessary for control
b : a group of judges among those hearing an appeal who disagree with the majority's judgment : dissent sense 3
c : a group of jurisdictions taking a less widespread approach to or view of a legal question, issue, or problem
3a : a part of a population differing especially from the dominant group in some characteristics (as race, sex, or national origin) and often subject to differential treatment
b : a member of a minority an effort to hire more minorities

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Comments on minority

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