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Ethnic violence (also known as ethnic terrorism or ethnically-motivated terrorism) refers to violence that is predominantly framed rhetorically by causes and issues related to ethnic hatred, though ethnic violence is more commonly related to political violence, and often the terms are interchangeable in a local context where reference to ethnicity is considered minimal or improper.

"Racist terrorism" is a form of ethnic violence which is typically dominated by overt forms of racism and xenophobic reactionism. This form typically involves attacks on minorities, and hold an association with right-wing extremism.

Racial supremacist groups such as Neo-Nazis often dominate the perception of an ethnic terrorist, though other violent actors associated with ethnic supremacism qualify.

Violent ethnic rivalry is the subject matter of Jewish sociologist Ludwig Gumplowicz's Der Rassenkampf ("Struggle of the Races", 1909), and more recently of Amy Chua's notable study, World On Fire: How Exporting Free Market Democracy Breeds Ethnic Hatred and Global Instability and Kevin B. MacDonald's controversial works on the Darwinian-evolutionary politics of Judaism.

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