From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
An ethnic group or ethnicity is a population of human beings whose members identify with each other, usually on the basis of a presumed common genealogy or ancestry. Recognition by others as a distinct ethnic group is often a contributing factor to developing this bond of identification. Ethnic groups are also often united by common cultural, behavioural, linguistic, ritualistic, or religious traits. Processes that result in the emergence of such identification are summarized as ethnogenesis.
The term is used in contrast to race, which refers to a classification of physical and genetic traits perceived as common to certain groups.