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2p30 April 2.docx

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Brock University
Gordon Hodson

April 2 PSYC 2P30 Stereotyping, Prejudice, Discrimination Definition: - Stereotypes o Beliefs about the attributes, characteristics, traits or qualities of a group or group members o What a group is like o Can include beliefs about actions (e.g. police will harass you) o Can be positive (e.g. loyal, athletic) or negative (e.g. lazy, violent) - Prejudice o Attitude (i.e. evaluation) toward a group or a group member o Like vs. dislike, favour vs. disfavour o Usually, but not always, negative o E.g. sexism, racism, ageism  Researchers often treat all –isms as negative - Discrimination o Behaviour (usually negative) aimed at a group or group member o E.g. denying employment, lynching Sources of Prejudice 1. Social Sources - Unequal status o When there’s unequal status (regardless of the reasoning), prejudice develops o “System Justification” - Religion o Leader can use religion to justify social order (within and between cultures) o Typical Findings (re: Christianity)  Church members are more prejudiced than nonmembers  Traditional/fundamental Christian believers express more prejudice o ... Other Findings  among those that go to church, the people who were more faithful/committed attenders were less prejudiced than occasional attenders o Allport (1954): Motives for Religiosity  Extrinsic: sing religion for instrumental means for self-serving ends (i.e. social status, personal security)  Intrinsic: pursue religion as an end in itself; master motive in life  Tend to be less prejudiced when prejudice is opposed by religious group (as most are)  But... o More prejudice when “anti-outgroup attitude” is supported by religion (e.g. homosexuals; Blacks in South Africa among S.A. church goers” o Batson (1976): Motives for Religiosity  Religion as Mean (i.e. extrinsic)  Religion as End (i.e. intrinsic)  Religion as Quest  Seek to face religious issues (e.g. mortality, meaning in life) in all their complexity, without simple answer - Self-Fulfilling Prophecies o Social beliefs can be self-confirming  1. Perceiver’s stereotypes influence his/her perceptions  2. Perceiver’s behaviour then elicits “expected” behaviour in the target o Rosenthal’s “Pygmalion Effect”  Tested children at school  Told teachers that ~20% were very bright  But, in reality, the children were randomly chosen o Word, Zanna and Cooper (1874)  White males interviewed white/black job applicants  Results: when applicant was black, white interviewers: o Sat farther away o Ended interview 25% earlier o Made 50% more speech errors, when compared to interview with white applicant (nervous?) 2. Emotional Sources - Frustration and Aggression o Scapegoat theory  Frustration (blocked goals) leads to (displaced) aggression  Lynching numbers were higher in years where the economy was bad (using the black community as scapegoats) (Hovland & Sears, 1940) - Frustration-Aggression Theory o Tough economy -> frustration (personal level) -> displace aggression (usually not against the source) o More contemporary  Realistic Conflict Theory (RCT)  Tough economy -> resource competition (group level) -> prejudice (multi-faceted, direct against source) 3. Cognitive Sources Stereotype Accuracy - Simplify our social world; “toolbox” (social cognition) - Useful, meaningful, fundamental (social identity) Reasons to Doubt the Notion of Accuracy - Stereotypes can be simultaneously incompatible o E.g. Jewish people are pushy, Jewish people are reclusive - Positive vs. negative labeling of the same behaviour (depending on who’s labeling) o E.g. Being good with money: Dutch are sensible with money, Scottish are stingy/mean with their money - Stereotypes can change, even without a change in the target group o E.g. Immigrants can be seen as hard-working people, then the economy shifts and immigrant
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