Definitions & Examples

Diversity is the presence of differences. Related to social justice work we mean a diversity of identities or human differences like race, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnicity, physical abilities, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, faith, and political beliefs.


Diversity in practice . “Let’s pause for a moment to talk about a phrase I see popping up all the time that I find troubling: “diverse candidate.” A team can be diverse and so can an organization  —  but a person? A person is not diverse, no matter how many norms or glass ceilings they shatter. No matter how outside of the norm I am, I am not a “diverse person”. Diversity is about a collective or a group and can only exist in relationship to others. A candidate is not diverse  —  they’re a unique, individual unit. They may bring diversity to your team or your hiring pool, but they in themselves are not diverse. They’re a woman; they’re a person of color; they’re part of the LGBTQ+ community; they have rad ombre hair. Diversity is often used as a euphemism. People say, “We are working to diversify our upper management,” instead of, “We are working to ensure there are more women and people of color in our upper-management roles.” Stepping away from the euphemism requires us to get more specific and accurate in our goals, which can lead to more substantive and accurate conversations and strategies. Meg Bolger “What is the difference between diversity,” General Assembly Blog. May 24, 2020

Inclusion: A culture of belonging by actively inviting the contribution and participation of all people. Where any individual or group is welcomed, respected, supported and valued to fully participate.


Equality vsEquity. Although both promote fairness, equalityachieves this through treating everyone the same regardless of need, while equity achieves this through treating people differently dependent on need.


For Example in Education. Equity: Arranging extra classes and giving special attention to the academically weak student in order reduce his/her existing educational achievement gap and improve his/her performance. This will ultimately help the individual student to reach his/her fullest potential. Equality: Giving equal attention and equal effort by the teacher to all the student in the classroom OR arranging extra classes for all the students irrespective of their exam grades, marks and classroom performance.

Intersectionality is a framework for conceptualizing a person, group of people, or social problem as affected by a number of discriminations and disadvantages. It takes into account people’s overlapping identities and experiences in order to understand the complexity of prejudices they face. “Intersectionality” was coined in 1989 by Kimberlé Crenshaw, a civil rights activist and legal scholar. In a paper for the University of Chicago Legal Forum, Crenshawwrote that traditional feminist ideas and antiracist policies exclude black women because they face overlapping discrimination unique to them.


 For Example. “Think of an LGBT African-American woman and a heterosexual white woman who are both working class. They do not experience the same levels of discrimination, even when they are working within the same structures that may locate them as poor,” writes feminist scholars Linda E. Carty and Chandra Talpade Mohanty “Because one can experience homophobia and racism at the same time. While the other may experience gender or class discrimination, her whiteness will always protect and insulate her from racism.” Arica L. Coleman “What’s Intersectionality? Let These Scholars Explain the Theory and Its History.” Time Online. March 28, 2019.