ra·​cial | \ ˈrā-shəl How to pronounce racial (audio) \

Definition of racial

1 : of, relating to, or based on a race (see race entry 1 sense 1a) a racial minority
2 : existing or occurring between races (see race entry 1 sense 1a) racial equality

Other Words from racial

racially \ ˈrā-​shə-​lē How to pronounce racial (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for racial



  • nonracial
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Examples of racial in a Sentence

What is your racial identity? There was racial tension on campus.
Recent Examples on the Web This is a place of disparity, inequities, people looking for racial justice. Susan Dunne, Hartford Courant, 5 Aug. 2022 Two years into the pandemic, an executive team’s portfolio has greatly expanded to include mental health, racial justice, and the transmissibility of a virus during a global pandemic. Cassandra Frangos, Forbes, 4 Aug. 2022 The case caught the attention of racial justice advocates in the region, including Yusef Miller, co-founder of the North County Equity and Justice Coalition. Teri Figueroa, San Diego Union-Tribune, 3 Aug. 2022 Representatives from local racial justice advocacy groups also attended the vigil and issued a statement demanding answers from D.C. police on the circumstances surrounding the shooting. Clarence Williams, Washington Post, 3 Aug. 2022 The comments came during a long interview with Ugandan climate activist Vanessa Nakate, who explained that climate justice can't be achieved without racial justice. Naledi Ushe, USA TODAY, 2 Aug. 2022 Chris Young, a regular customer and friend of Jones, said racist incidents seem to have become more prevalent in Salem since the 2020 racial justice protests, but there hasn’t been much recognition of it from city leaders. April Erhlich, oregonlive, 1 Aug. 2022 Grace Nail Johnson, the only Black member, pushed to keep racial justice at the forefront. BostonGlobe.com, 29 July 2022 His death served as the catalyst for racial justice and police brutality protests in the summer of 2020. Brigid Kennedy, The Week, 27 July 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of racial

1854, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for racial

race entry 1 + -ial

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Statistics for racial

Last Updated

11 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Racial.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/racial. Accessed 11 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for racial


ra·​cial | \ ˈrā-shəl How to pronounce racial (audio) \

Kids Definition of racial

: of, relating to, or based on race a racial group

Other Words from racial

racially adverb


ra·​cial | \ ˈrā-shəl How to pronounce racial (audio) \

Medical Definition of racial

: of, relating to, or based on a race

More from Merriam-Webster on racial

Nglish: Translation of racial for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of racial for Arabic Speakers


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