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Thus the Comte de Montlosier, in exile during the French Revolution, equated class difference in 18th-century France with racial difference. in 1863, and the etymology of the word is tied up with political conflicts during the American Civil War over the abolition of slavery and over the racial segregation of African-Americans.
Borrowing Boulainvilliers' discourse on the "Nordic race" as being the French aristocracy that invaded the plebeian "Gauls", he showed his contempt for the lowest social class, the Third Estate, calling it "this new people born of slaves ... Miscegenation comes from the Latin miscere, "to mix" and genus, "kind". The reference to genus was made to emphasize the supposedly distinct biological differences between whites and non-whites, though all humans belong to the same genus, Homo, and the same species, Homo sapiens.
Only in November 1864 was the pamphlet exposed as a hoax.
The hoax pamphlet was written by David Goodman Croly, managing editor of the New York World, a Democratic Party paper, and George Wakeman, a World reporter.
In the United States, miscegenation has referred primarily to the intermarriage between whites and non-whites, especially blacks.
Before the publication of Miscegenation, the word amalgamation, borrowed from metallurgy, had been in use as a general term for ethnic and racial intermixing.
These words, much older than the term miscegenation, are derived from the Late Latin mixticius for "mixed", which is also the root of the Spanish word mestizo.
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The word was coined in an anonymous propaganda pamphlet published in New York City in December 1863, during the American Civil War.
The pamphlet was entitled Miscegenation: The Theory of the Blending of the Races, Applied to the American White Man and Negro.
Conversely, people classified in censuses as black, brown ("pardo") or indigenous have disadvantaged social indicators in comparison to the white population.
The concept of miscegenation is tied to concepts of racial difference.