Definition of nonwhite in English:



  • Denoting or relating to a person whose origin is not predominantly European.

    ‘minority teachers serve as positive role models for nonwhite students’
    • ‘It took the nation almost three quarters of a century to accept non-white immigrants.’
    • ‘The residual vote rate of a county does depend on the percent of non-white residents in the county.’
    • ‘The other problem is that many of the really great non-white reporters out there are just too much in demand.’
    • ‘Our family lived in a small town in the interior of B.C. and we were the only family that had non-white children.’
    • ‘Sadly, for non-white people associated with football, racist comments come as no surprise.’
    • ‘I try to put that pro-immigrant message and the interests of immigrants and non-white people in the center.’
    • ‘When he announced his squad, there were 11 non-white players in it.’
    • ‘I have more non-white friends in Greensboro, Alabama than I do in London.’
    • ‘Subsequent legislation in 1971 and 1981 has made it more difficult for non-white immigrants to enter.’
    • ‘Teaching American history without stirring accounts of non-white heroes and cultures is irresponsible as well as divisive.’
    • ‘What then are the reasonable openings for non-white actors in plays which, as a matter of historical fact, were written with white actors in mind?’
    • ‘After all, so many of these new post-1965 immigrants are non-white people living in a predominantly white society.’
    • ‘Other reports of the march suggested that among the crowd there was quite a high percentage of non-white people.’
    • ‘By 1966 most of the regulations restricting immigration of non-white people to Australia had been removed and multiculturalism was adopted.’


  • A person whose origin is not predominantly European.

    • ‘They still suffer the same discrimination as did other non-whites and women decades ago.’
    • ‘Cable has been an amazing place for expression, for African-Americans and for non-whites in general.’
    • ‘In Montreal, non-whites only make up 13 per cent of the population.’
    • ‘Trades unions feared that non-whites would agree to work for lower wages.’
    • ‘The legislation was enforced by a dictation test, which could be applied in any European language, effectively barring virtually all non-whites.’
    • ‘He used non-white nurses to assist him in his operations - a first in South Africa where non-whites previously were not allowed to treat white patients.’
    • ‘For every 1,000 people in the county, 8.8 white people were stopped and searched, compared with 33.4 for non-whites.’
    • ‘That must surely give comfort to minority groups or to non-whites who feel disenfranchised.’
    • ‘A few non-whites have starred for the national team.’
    • ‘The overall figures for employment and education show persistent discrimination against the vast majority of non-whites, though the experience varies for different groups.’


The term nonwhite has been objected to on the grounds that it assumes that the norm is white. However, although alternatives such as person of color have begun to be used more widely in recent years, they may not be appropriate in all contexts. Nonwhite continues to be broadly accepted where a collective term is required to show a distinction, as in statistical or demographic categories. See also
person of color



/ˌnänˈ(h)wīt/ /ˌnɑnˈ(h)waɪt/