Race, nation, people even though in technical use they are commonly differentiated, are often used popularly and interchangeably to designate one of a number of great divisions of mankind, each made up of an aggregate of persons who are thought of, or think of themselves, as comprising a distinct unit.
In technical discriminations, all more or less controversial and often lending themselves to great popular misunderstanding or misuse, race is anthropological and ethnological in force, usually implying a distinct physical type with certain unchanging characteristics (as a particular color of skin or shape of skull).
Sometimes, and more controversially, other presumed common factors are chosen, as place of origin or common root language.
In popular use race can apply to any more or less clearly defined group thought of as a unit usually because of a common or presumed common past.
Nation, primarily political in force, usually designates the citizenry as a whole of a sovereign state and implies a certain homogeneity because of common laws, institutions, customs, or loyalty.
Sometimes it is opposed to state and often not clearly distinguishable from race in comprising any large group crossing national boundaries and with something significantly in common.
People, sometimes interchangeable with nation though stressing a cultural or social rather than a national unity, can apply to a body of persons, as a whole or as individuals, who show a consciousness of solidarity or common characteristics suggesting a common culture or common interests or ideals and a sense of kinship.