Meaning of inequality in English:


Pronunciation /ɪnɪˈkwɒlɪti/

See synonyms for inequality

Translate inequality into Spanish


mass noun
  • 1Difference in size, degree, circumstances, etc.; lack of equality.

    ‘social inequality’
    • ‘the widening inequalities in income’
    • ‘The free market program implemented by successive governments has widened social inequality to an unprecedented degree.’
    • ‘Our results indicate that cross-country differences in income inequality alone does not explain for much of the variations in child labour worldwide.’
    • ‘The underlying cause of growing discontent is the enormous degree of social inequality that has resulted from the introduction of capitalism in the former Soviet Union.’
    • ‘In other words, the widening gap between pension provision in the public and private sector will not just lead to widening social inequality, it will also become a block to Scotland's economy growth.’
    • ‘Perhaps most important, inequality in the distribution of income and wealth means inequality in political and social power.’
    • ‘If you compare a violent society with a relatively peaceful one, the single biggest difference is income inequality.’
    • ‘The Gini coefficient ranges from 0 to 1 and measures the degree of income inequality.’
    • ‘Hostility to the existing political setup is being exacerbated by growing unemployment lines and widening social inequality.’
    • ‘More generally, of course, economic inequality undermines social cohesion.’
    • ‘She has a particular interest in exploring differing approaches to collectivism and working class resistance to social inequality.’
    • ‘Under New Labour, not only has inequality of income increased, social mobility has actually decreased.’
    • ‘On the contrary, under conditions of growing social inequality, the population at large is seen in a generally hostile manner, as a potential threat to his wealth and privileges.’
    • ‘Democracy shows an independent positive association with health, which remains after adjustment for a country's wealth, its level of inequality, and the size of its public sector.’
    • ‘The authoritarian government of the past exploited inequality among different ethnic groups, suppressing native languages and cultures.’
    • ‘Too many hours for some, combined with too few hours for others, can further polarize income inequality, as has occurred in Canada.’
    • ‘In addition, the country is fraught with numerous divisions upon which demagogues can flourish under circumstances of want and inequality.’
    • ‘Gender inequality shapes different experiences of poverty and impacts on women and men's ability to move out of poverty.’
    • ‘However the selection is performed, there will always be a difference or inequality between professional groups.’
    • ‘In particular we need to focus on ways of building a mutuality of respect across the boundaries of inequality and difference.’
    • ‘Never for a moment did they realize that the existing structure of society is the breeding ground of inequality, hatred and cruelty.’
    imbalance, inequity, unevenness, disproportion, inconsistency, variation, variability
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 archaic Lack of smoothness or regularity in a surface.
      • ‘the inequality of the ground hindered their footing’
    2. 1.2Mathematics The relation between two expressions that are not equal, employing a sign such as ≠ ‘not equal to’, > ‘greater than’, or < ‘less than’.
    3. 1.3Mathematics count noun A symbolic expression of the fact that two quantities are not equal.
      ‘His early work was on number theory and he wrote on Diophantine inequalities and the geometry of numbers.’
      • ‘He studied inequalities and geometry and measure theory, particularly working in this area with Besicovitch.’
      • ‘In fact he is remembered for Farkas theorem which is used in linear programming and also for his work on linear inequalities.’
      • ‘He also studied infinite series, the gamma function and inequalities for convex functions.’
      • ‘He showed that Bell's inequalities were violated and so the quantum interpretation held rather than the classical one.’


Late Middle English from Old French inequalite, or from Latin inaequalitas, from in- ‘not’ + aequalis (see equal).