Xenophbia literally means fear of aliens. Often used in referral to people who have a fear of change or of new and different things. Sometimes used to refer to those who fear foreigners, or (occasionally) extraterrestrials.
Phobias are irrational fears but the word is often applied to cases where there may be a legitamate danger. For instance, in human history, more advanced civilizations often do not interact well with less advanced civilizations. Some simply fear something that is different, like a foreign language.
Others are xenophobic because they understand that other groups of people can threaten their own survival or way of life. They understand that human life and society in general is part of an unsustainable process which is beyond their control.
Historic examples of this contrast include China who closed its borders after the Tang Dynasty and ceased its technical golden age, when it developed gun powder and the printing press. This Xenophobia was ultimately harmful where countries involved in the spice trade flourished. Conversely, the American Indian’s fear of aliens was absolutely justified as it resulted in the genocide of much of their race.
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