Segregation is the establishment by law or custom of separate (and often inferior) facilities for social, ethnic or religious groups by providing separate educational, recreational, and other services. Segregation inevitably results in discrimination in favour of one group over the other or others. The word covers a whole range of discriminatory practices including the denial of employment and voting rights and prohibition against intermarriage. More generally speaking, it also occurs in education, housing, public services and on age, sexual and class grounds.
Characteristic of societies with complex class systems, it manifests itself in areas as widely apart as India (caste system), Asia and the Middle East, as well as South Africa and North America. The implication that segregation was a natural phenomenon assisted its growth.