Affirmative Action (Political Science)

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  • The principle according to which laws may prohibit discrimination in the workplace, in terms of hiring and promotions, and in education, in terms of admissions, against minority groups, such as women, Latino/a, and other historically disadvantaged groups. The term first came into use in 1935 in the National Relations Act. Affirmative action provides a framework for governmental agencies to promote equality for African Americans. During the 1950s and 1960s, in legal cases such as Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka (1954), the Supreme Court ruled that, as African Americans have equal rights before the law (as established in the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution), practical measures must be taken to address violations of those rights.

    As a tool to decrease social inequality for racial ...

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