• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Political Correctness

Political correctness, politically correct, and PC are terms used to refer to language that seems intended to give the least amount of offense, especially when describing groups identified by external markers such as race, gender, culture, or sexual orientation. The concept has been discussed, disputed, criticized, and satirized by commentators from the conservative, liberal, and moderate camps. It has been used to ridicule the view that altering language usage can change perceptions, outcomes, and beliefs in the public arena.

The term first appeared in Marxist-Leninist vocabulary following the Russian Revolution of 1917. At that time it was used to describe the party line. During the late 1970s and early 1980s, the term began to be used wittily by liberal politicians to refer to the extremism of ...

    • Loading...
    locked icon

    Sign in to access this content

    Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

    • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
    • Read modern, diverse business cases
    • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles