Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The condition of being unequal.
  • n. An instance of being unequal.
  • n. Lack of equality, as of opportunity, treatment, or status.
  • n. Social or economic disparity: the growing inequality between rich and poor.
  • n. Lack of smoothness or regularity; unevenness.
  • n. Variability; changeability.
  • n. Mathematics An algebraic relation showing that a quantity is greater than or less than another quantity.
  • n. Astronomy A deviation from uniformity in the motion of a celestial body.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An unfair, not equal, state.
  • n. A statement that of two quantities one is specifically less than (or greater than) another. Symbol: < or ≤ or > or ≥, as appropriate.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The quality of being unequal; difference, or lack of equality, in any respect; lack of uniformity; disproportion; unevenness; disparity; diversity
  • n. Unevenness; lack of levelness; the alternate rising and falling of a surface
  • n. Variableness; changeableness; inconstancy; lack of smoothness or equability; deviation; unsteadiness, as of the weather, feelings, etc.
  • n. Disproportion to any office or purpose; inadequacy; competency.
  • n. An expression consisting of two unequal quantities, with the sign of inequality (> or <) between them.
  • n. An irregularity, or a deviation, in the motion of a planet or satellite from its uniform mean motion; the amount of such deviation.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Lack of equality in character or attributes; unlikeness between things of the same kind; diversity; disparity: as, inequality in size, numbers, etc.; the inequality of the fingers.
  • n. Lack of equality in the state or condition of a person or thing; want of uniformity of relation, level, surface, etc.; variation or variable ness; unevenness: as, inequalities of temper; inequalities of rank or fortune; inequalities of the earth's surface.
  • n. Injustice; partiality.
  • n. In astronomy, the deviation in the motion of a planet or satellite from its uniform mean mo tion.
  • n. In algebra, an expression of two unequal quantities connected by either of the signs of inequality ⟩ or ⟨; thus, a ⟩ b, signifying that a is greater than b, and a ⟨ b, signifying that a is less than b, are inequalities.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. lack of equality

Etymologies

From Old French inequalité, from Medieval Latin inaequalitas, from inaequalis ("unequal"), from in- ("not") + aequalis ("equal"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • For many, the solution to an increase in inequality is to make the tax structure more progressive — raise taxes on high-income households and reduce taxes on low-income households.

    Progressive Taxation is Anti-Education?, Arnold Kling | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty

  • Arnold Kling thinks trends in inequality are less important than trends in rates of return: I have an uneasy feeling that the people who are arguing over whether inequality is increasing are asking the wrong question.

    Inequality, Arnold Kling | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty

  • For example, a search of Lexis/Nexis's database reveals that in October 2010, U.S. newspapers published 409 stories with the word "inequality".

    Peter Dreier: Occupy Wall Street: Changing the Topic

  • Number of articles with the word 'inequality' in U.S. newspapers - October 2010 through October 2011

    Peter Dreier: Occupy Wall Street: Changing the Topic

  • There is one man that everyone is talking about at this hour, and it is indeed Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gadhafi, who used his maiden address to the General Assembly to basically rail against the institution and effectively rail against what he called the inequality of the body.

    CNN Transcript Sep 23, 2009

  • Another aspect of the inequality is the difference in the vigour with which the prosecution is conducted, the difference in the fairness with which a prosecution is conducted, and with which police investigation is conducted.

    The Death Penalty—For and Against

  • A search of the Lexis/Nexis's database reveals that in October 2010, U.S. newspapers published 409 stories with the word "inequality."

    The Full Feed from HuffingtonPost.com

  • The more people turn to and demand government does what they want, the more they become wards of the state, serfs working on the government's estate and squabbling over the tiny things they're given by a tyrannical state who will allow no freedom that might lead to what they define as inequality or unfairness.

    Word Around the Net

  • The elasticity of pecuniary crimes relative to inequality is 1.46, corroborating previous literature.

    Crime and Law

  • Of course, this inequality is essentially the PR machine at work to justify the passing of legislation designed to curtail human basic rights.

    Ersatz movies vs The Real Thing

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