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PSYC12H3 (388)
Lecture

Chapter 7

5 Pages
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Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC12H3
Professor
Michael Inzlicht

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Chapter 7 PSYC12 11/04/2011
Ageism
-Stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination based on age
-Different conceptions of older people are evoked when one accesses a generic prototype of older people
(often negative), when asked about a specific older person it becomes harder to remember negative
stereotypes and therefore the impression is usually positive
-Age stereotypes: Content and Use
oBenign ageism
Subtle type fo prejudice that arises out of the conscious and unconscious fears one has of
growing old
oMalignant ageism
More pernicious stereotyping process in which older people are regarded as worthless
-Effects of pseudopositive attitudes
oPatronizing Language
Overaccomodation
Younger individuals become overly polite, speak louder and slower, exaggerate their
intonation etc. with elders
Downplaying of serious thoughts, concerns, and feelings expressed by older people
Baby talk
More negative and condescending form of overaccomodation
Associated with the stereotype that all older persons have deficits in cognitive
abilities ant therefore need special communication at a slower simpler level
oPatronizing Behaviour
Infantilization
Belief that elders are like children because of their inferior mental and physical
capability
Creates a self fulfilling prophecy in older people (Arluke and Levin, 1984)
oBy accepting such a role, face 2 negative consequences
Social status of older people is diminished through the decrease in
responsibility
Society may feel justified in the use of psychoactive medication,
institutionalization etc.
Political power of older people is reduced when older people come tot
believe their ability is limited
Patronizing behaviour and even well intended offers of assistance can have negative
consequences for the self esteem of the older individual
Negative self perception about aging can have a strong connection to ones overall physical
health and longevity
Major part of who we are, who we believer our self is derived from our social interactions
and the feedback about our self that others give (Looking glass self)
Patronizing talk leads to elders viewing other elders as helpless and weak
SIT states that part of ones self esteem is derived form their group memberships
When a member of the group verifies the negative stereotype, to protect ones own
self esteem the best way is to derogate the other member and distinguish them as
an aberration
Aging affects the self in three ways (Atchley, 1982)
Develop a stable self concept, longer life means more opportunities one has had to
test themselves over various situations
www.notesolution.com
Chapter 7 PSYC12 11/04/2011
oSome people never develop a firm concept of their self and are left feeling
confused and acting inconsistently
oTheses people are more vulnerable to negative information about
themselves
Reduction in the social roles one has as one gets older reduces the possibility for
conflict between varius aspects of self
Aging is not as difficult period of working to develop oneself but is a time of simply
maintaining ones self, roles, and abilities
2 factors which contribute to lower self esteem (Atchley)
Loss of physical capacity
Loss of control over ones environment
-Ageism in the Helping professions
oCounsellors, educators, and other professionals are just as likely as other individuals to be
prejudiced against older people
oMedical community implicitly trains doctors to treat patients with an age bias, putting little value on
geriatrics in the med school curriculum, and approaching the treatment of older people with a
noticeable degree of apathy / disdain (Levenson, 1981)
oReluctant therapists” (Kastenbaum, 1964)
Caused pervasive stereotypes that therapists have about older people
oOlder people are less likely than younger clients to be referred for psychiatric assessments and
more likely to be recommended drug therapy as a treatment for depression
oBias observed in the delivery of psychological services might be due to healthism
Healthism is stereotypes about individuals who are in poor physical health
Psychologists gave worse interpersonal ratings for persons with poor physical health than
those with no health problems
o4 ways ageism bias among health professionals can be changed
continually asses their own attitudes toward solder people
confront ageism and healthism when it rises
institute geriatrics programs in hospitals and mental health practices
Integrate into their trainging a thorough knowledge of ageism and healthism
-Origins of ageism
oGerontophobia
Irrational fear, hatred, and or hostility towards older people
Displace ones own fear of dying into stereotypes and prejudice toward older people
oAge grading of society
Age grading / stratification
Communicates implicit and explicit expectations / norms about behaviours that are
expected and appropriate at various ages
Gerontocratic societies
oOlder people are held in the highest respect and hold positions of power and
leadership
oFrom Sage to Burden
Great advances were made in medicine allowing people to live longer creating a larger
population of elders
Younger society was not prepared to deal with this and therefore associated old age
with being non-productive burdens to be marginalized into the fringes of society
Modernization
Older people have lost prestige and respect as society has become modernized
www.notesolution.com

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Description
Chapter 7 PSYC12 11042011 Ageism - Stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination based on age - Different conceptions of older people are evoked when one accesses a generic prototype of older people (often negative), when asked about a specific older person it becomes harder to remember negative stereotypes and therefore the impression is usually positive - Age stereotypes: Content and Use o Benign ageism Subtle type fo prejudice that arises out of the conscious and unconscious fears one has of growing old o Malignant ageism More pernicious stereotyping process in which older people are regarded as worthless - Effects of pseudopositive attitudes o Patronizing Language Overaccomodation Younger individuals become overly polite, speak louder and slower, exaggerate their intonation etc. with elders Downplaying of serious thoughts, concerns, and feelings expressed by older people Baby talk More negative and condescending form of overaccomodation Associated with the stereotype that all older persons have deficits in cognitive abilities ant therefore need special communication at a slower simpler level o Patronizing Behaviour Infantilization Belief that elders are like children because of their inferior mental and physical capability Creates a self fulfilling prophecy in older people (Arluke and Levin, 1984) o By accepting such a role, face 2 negative consequences Social status of older people is diminished through the decrease in responsibility Society may feel justified in the use of psychoactive medication, institutionalization etc. Political power of older people is reduced when older people come tot believe their ability is limited Patronizing behaviour and even well intended offers of assistance can have negative consequences for the self esteem of the older individual Negative self perception about aging can have a strong connection to ones overall physical health and longevity Major part of who we are, who we believer our self is derived from our social interactions and the feedback about our self that others give (Looking glass self) Patronizing talk leads to elders viewing other elders as helpless and weak SIT states that part of ones self esteem is derived form their group memberships When a member of the group verifies the negative stereotype, to protect ones own self esteem the best way is to derogate the other member and distinguish them as an aberration Aging affects the self in three ways (Atchley, 1982) Develop a stable self concept, longer life means more opportunities one has had to test themselves over various situations www.notesolution.com
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