What Is Xenophobia

What Is Xenophobia


Xenophobia, from the Greek xenos, meaning “stranger” or “foreigner”, and phobos, meaning “fear”, is the fear or hatred of that which is perceived to be foreign or strange. It is an expression of perceived conflict between an ingroup and an outgroup and may manifest in suspicion by the one of the other’s activities, a desire to eliminate their presence, and fear of losing national, ethnic or racial identity.

Xenophobia and racism often overlap, but differ in that the latter is based on physical characteristics while the former is “based on the perception that the other is foreign to or originates from outside the community or nation”.


It can also be defined as fear or hatred of foreigners, people from different cultures, or strangers

fear or dislike of the customs, dress, etc., of people who are culturally different from oneself


Some Causes of Xenophobia

A report by the Human Sciences Research Council identified four broad causes for the violence: relative deprivation, specifically intense competition for jobs, commodities and housing; group processes, including psychological categorisation processes that are nationalistic rather than superordinate.

Some Examples of Xenophobia,

South Africans attacking, killing and destroying properties of Nigerians and other African nationals residing in South Africa, racism could be people in Australia feeling superior to ones in New Zealand. Xenophobia actually means to fear or dislike other races, cultures, ways of life, and people not similar to one’s own. … Xenophobia includes straight people being afraid and disapproving of gay people.

The 2019 Johannesburg riots occurred in the South African city of Johannesburg from 1–5 September 2019, leading to the deaths of at least seven people. The riots were xenophobic in nature targeting foreign nationals from the rest of Africa