What is ostracism?
Ostracism is any act of banishing, shunning, ignoring, or excluding. One individual can carry it out upon another, or a group can do it. Ostracism comes in many forms and levels of severity. Most of us can relate to common examples: feeling left out, giving or receiving the silent treatment, time-outs for misbehavior, locking oneself in a room after an argument, hanging up the phone in mid-conversation, unanswered email, and ending a friendship or relationship. A few of us have experienced other more severe forms of ostracism: peer rejection in schools, ex-communication, banishment, or solitary confinement.