Definition of social cleansing in US English:

social cleansing


  • The large-scale removal from an area of members of a social category regarded as undesirable.

    ‘the demolition of large swathes of council housing smacks of social cleansing’
    • ‘The 52-year-old warned that the housing benefit cap would lead to "social cleansing on an unprecedented scale."’
    • ‘Architectural campaign groups and local residents have condemned the scheme in Liverpool as an act of "social cleansing" that is at odds with the city's imminent status as European Capital of Culture.’
    • ‘The result in some areas is social cleansing, with the rich creating exclusive enclaves.’
    • ‘Police officers have allegedly been involved in these attacks, pointing to a systematic campaign of social cleansing.’
    • ‘The director of Anchor House said comparing the shortage of affordable housing to social cleansing was "unhelpful and emotive".’
    • ‘All particularly grotesque in an area that has seen the mass social cleansing that is gentrification expel working class inhabitants, black or white, off to the peripheries.’
    • ‘We also see a lot of social cleansing, a pattern of continual low-level harassment and threats to drive undesirables out.’
    • ‘That will make it easier for millionaires in the City to get their hands on the land and housing, completing a process of social cleansing of the East End.’
    • ‘The regime engages in two major forms of repression - the selective persecution of political opponents and the social cleansing of powerless people.’
    • ‘Unlike gentrification, social cleansing is always government-initiated.’