SAN DIEGO – Dictionary.com announced that xenophobia is the 2016 word of the year.
The word is a nod to the unfortunate rise in fears of “otherness” or fear of foreigners, people from different cultures or strangers. The word’s origins stem from two Greek terms xenos meaning “stranger” and phobo meaning “fear” or “panic,” according to Dictionary.com.
With a year of political rhetoric and the refugee crisis, the selection of xenophobia may not come to a surprise to most.
In June, following the Brexit vote, online keyword searches for “xenophobia” surged. Days later, President Barack Obama delivered a speech using the term to describe Donald Trump’s language.