Although prejudice, with its connotations of intolerance , implies a negative bias, the word can be used in positive constructions:
I, too, appreciate projects that treat a difficult subject with rigor, although I'll confess to harboring a bit of prejudice toward thing-biographies.
Adam Baer, Harper's, May 2011
That's true for the participial adjective prejudiced as well:
“The question itself as posed in the survey obviously is prejudiced in favor of the program,” said Tod Story, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada.
Neal Morton, Las Vegas Review Journal, 2 Aug. 2016
In negative constructions, prejudice and prejudiced often precede against:
Lee County Circuit Judge Jacob Walker on Tuesday ruled that claims of juror misconduct by former House Speaker Mike Hubbard failed to show that the jury was prejudiced against Hubbard.
Mike Cason, AL.com, 19 Oct. 2016
predilection implies a strong liking deriving from one's temperament or experience.
a predilection for travel
prepossession suggests a fixed conception likely to preclude objective judgment of anything counter to it.
a prepossession against technology
prejudice usually implies an unfavorable prepossession and connotes a feeling rooted in suspicion, fear, or intolerance.
a mindless prejudice against the unfamiliar
bias implies an unreasoned and unfair distortion of judgment in favor of or against a person or thing.
a strong bias toward the plaintiff
Examples of prejudice in a Sentence
NounBut today most black Americans not hampered by poverty or prejudice take for granted their right to study Italian, listen to Britney Spears or opera, play in the NHL, eat Thai food, live anywhere, work anywhere, play anywhere, read and think and say anything.—Stephan Talty, Mulatto America, 2003It is easy to suppose at this late date that there is barely any overt racism left in the United States, … Kennedy's catalog of mundane cases of explicit anti-black prejudice provides ample illustration of what lurks beneath the surface politeness of many whites.—John McWhorter, New Republic, 14 Jan. 2002The boundaries between hate and prejudice and between prejudice and opinion and between opinion and truth are so complicated and blurred that any attempt to construct legal and political fire walls is a doomed and illiberal venture.—Andrew Sullivan, New York Times Magazine, 26 Sept. 1999When my mother, who, unlike my father, was Jewish, encountered unpleasant social prejudice during my high-school years, I acquired a second marginal identity.—Carl E. Schorske, Thinking with History, 1998
The organization fights against racial prejudice.
religious, racial, and sexual prejudices
We tend to make these kinds of decisions according to our own prejudices.
He has a prejudice against fast-food restaurants. VerbPaul Revere … engraved the drawing and printed hundreds of vividly colored copies, which traveled throughout the colonies. Well might one judge at Captain Preston's trial complain that "there has been a great deal done to prejudice the People against the Prisoner."—Hiller B. Zobel, American Heritage, July/August 1995My friends would have had me delay my departure, but fearful of prejudicing my employers against me by such want of punctuality at the commencement of my undertaking, I persisted in keeping the appointment.—Anne Brontë, Agnes Grey, 1847
all the bad stories I had heard about the incoming CEO prejudiced me against him even before the first meeting See More
Recent Examples on the Web
And does this change come with a new perspective, and a new host of acts and prejudices others are willing to enact on us?—Hazlitt, 20 Sep. 2023 By the end of the 1960s, most children sent abroad were not biracial but born to unwed mothers, another target of prejudice in South Korea.—Choe Sang-Hun, BostonGlobe.com, 17 Sep. 2023 Even without the suspicion that authorities show toward Buddhism, the school and its community still have to deal with the government’s prejudice against Roma and desire to control the country’s education system.—Marc Loustau, The Christian Science Monitor, 6 Sep. 2023 Saúl is a gay man who has had to face prejudice in his family and in the world, and his battle for respect in the ring is depicted as a crucial part of his wider quest.—Richard Brody
The staff writer Naomi Fry on the most stylish documentaries.—The New Yorker, 15 Sep. 2023 The Hollywood studio has already rolled out its Content for Change program in Canada to support local content creators and drive out bias, discrimination and prejudice in the local film and TV industry.—Etan Vlessing, The Hollywood Reporter, 13 Sep. 2023 Court records show the class B misdemeanor assault charge filed last month against Ron Gibson, 50, was dismissed on Aug. 31 without prejudice, meaning the case can be refiled if prosecutors choose to.—Jacob Scholl, The Salt Lake Tribune, 9 Sep. 2023 As many critics have pointed out, Marvel superheroes quite obviously reflect or critique the attitudes and prejudices of postwar America.—Michael Dirda, Washington Post, 8 Sep. 2023 Misogyny by textbook definition is hatred or prejudice against women.—Elizabeth Ayoola, Essence, 23 Aug. 2023
Opponents of the bill, including the California Catholic Conference, said the proposals were prejudiced, in favor of one reproductive health choice over another.—Mackenzie Mays, Los Angeles Times, 21 Sep. 2023 Courts Veteran San Diego defense lawyer collapses during court argument, later dies
June 13, 2023
Fraser ruled that Cline and Cutter had proven McInnis was prejudiced by the 27 years that passed between the crime and McInnis being charged.—Alex Riggins, San Diego Union-Tribune, 19 Aug. 2023 Or, for that matter, prejudice the prosecution's position.—Dory Jackson, Peoplemag, 17 Aug. 2023 All of that will prejudice Johnson’s ability to receive a fair trial and mount a defense, his attorneys said.—Amy Lavalley, Chicago Tribune, 9 Aug. 2023 Any further delays will substantially prejudice the State’s rights.—Taylor Romine, CNN, 28 July 2023 While her time in office was winding down, her defense lawyers moved to have the trial transferred out of Baltimore, arguing that pervasive media coverage of Mosby prejudiced the jury pool against her.—Alex Mann, Baltimore Sun, 30 June 2023 Mears argued Stoner’s comments toward their request had prejudiced the prosecutor's ability to pursue the case.—Jake Allen, The Indianapolis Star, 15 May 2023 In a motion filed on Monday, Steel pushed back on the prosecution's allegation that Young Thug's actions led to a delay in the trial and argued that this characterization by the Fulton County District Attorney's Office is an attempt to prejudice the public and the jury against the rapper.—Deena Zaru, ABC News, 25 Jan. 2023 See More
These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'prejudice.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.
Noun and Verb
Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin praejudicium previous judgment, damage, from prae- + judicium judgment — more at judicial
Middle English prejudice "injury from a judgment, an opinion formed before knowing the facts," from early French prejudice (same meaning), from Latin praejudicium "previous judgment," from prae- "pre-, before" and judicium "judgment," from judic-, judex "judge," from jus "right, law" and dicere "to say" — related to judge, just