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Inhabitants of a state may be subjects 1, citizens 1 or nationals 1 of that state, who enjoy certain political rights, or they maybe aliens 2 or foreigners 2 who are citizens of another state, or citizens of no state at all and are called stateless 3. The term "subject" used to have a servile connotation, but has tended to lose it and is frequently taken as a synonym of citizen, though occasionally a distinction is made, especially in colonial territories, between a subject and a citizen. Citizens of a state generally possess the nationality 4 of that state. This term is nowadays used as a synonym for citizenship 4, but in some multi-national states 6 a distinction may be drawn between political nationality 4 and ethnic nationality 5.
Aliens may acquire the nationality of their country of residence by naturalization 1 and become naturalized citizens 2 or naturalized persons 2. In some countries certificates of naturalization 3 may be revoked 4 and naturalized persons will then suffer loss of nationality 5. Persons may occasionally have more than one nationality, and will then be said to possess dual nationality 6. A distinction is sometimes drawn between resident aliens 7, who habitually live in a country other than their own, and alien visitors 8 or visiting aliens 8, who are there only for relatively short periods.
Individuals born in the territory in which they live are called natives 1 of that territory. If their ancestors have lived there for a long time they are called autochthonous 2, indigenous 2 or aboriginal 2 inhabitants; the last term is often reserved for primitive peoples. Statistics frequently distinguish between native-born 3 and foreign-born 4 individuals.
- 1. The term "native" is also used occasionally to denote a person of non-European descent born in a subject territory.
- 2. Aboriginal inhabitants are sometimes called aborigines.
The term race 1 is generally taken to mean a group of persons with certain common physical characteristics which are hereditarily transmissible. In colloquial language, however, the term is used very much more loosely, sometimes for a group of people bound together by a common culture, or even for people inhabiting a given territory. Another term which is sometimes used is ethnic group 2 and here again there is no uniformity in meaning. A people 3 (cf. 305-2) is generally a collection of persons who are linked by a common past or a common culture. Persons living in a given territory who exhibit notable differences from the majority of the population are called minorities 4, e.g. ethnic minorities 4, national minorities 4 or linguistic minorities 4.
- 1. race n. — racial adj.
Individuals are sometimes distinguished by their colour 1, which is used loosely to refer to the apparent pigmentation of the skin. In some countries a distinction is drawn between white persons 2 and coloured persons 3, sometimes called non-whites 3. Crossing 4 between races of different colours is sometimes referred to as miscegenation 4. A person who is the issue of such a union is said to be of mixed blood 5 or may be called a half-caste 5 or a half-breed 5 —though the latter terms are sometimes used in a pejorative sense.
- 3. It should be noted that in South Africa the term coloured is used to refer to the population which is neither of European extraction nor of pure Bantu race, but is the result of miscegenation. In the United States of America any non-white person is called colored.
- 5. The issue of a white and a negro is called a mulatto. In Spanish America the issue of a person of European extraction and an American Indian is called a mestizo and the issue of a person of European extraction and an Asian is sometimes referred to as an Eurasian.
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