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Lecture 9

LECTURE 9.docx

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Michael Inzlicht

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LECTURE 9 – AGEISM & SEXISM Ageism - Ageism: stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination based on age - Expressing prejudice to others based on age (or others such as obesity) in our society does not yield such strong concerns as, for example, race or gender - Unlike other prejudices, elderly are the out-group that will one day become in-group - People are living longer, and there are a lot of baby boomers so our society will have a larger population by 2030. It is important to study the elderly because our society will have to change a lot to accommodate the older population - Treatment of elderly can also determine their fate. If we all treat them bad then it’ll be like genocide or eventually “suicide” - Patronizing language: e.g. baby talk, over-accommodation - Patronizing behaviour: infantalization, assume physical deterioration - Perdue & Gurtman 1990: are negative ppl’s associations with elderly implicit or explicit oMethod: evaluative priming task. Old vs. young subliminally primed for 55ms, then decide if next word is positive or negative. E.g. old -> selfish, vs. young -> selfish oDV: reaction time to words, faster RT = stronger association oHypothesis: when young people are primed with “old” it’ll be faster for them to categorize selfish as bad oResults: doesn’t really show out group derogation but show in-group favoritism. oBut a problem is that the word “old” is not generalizable, it might mean diff things to diff people; e.g. old car vs. old person Origins of ageism - Societal age grading: we have grades. E.g. school, bus fare (kids, student, adult, etc) - Dominance of youth culture - Media: media makes it okay for people to make fun of older people - Fear of death Terror management theory - Terror management theory: according to this theory, we try to suppress the fact we will all die. So there are defense mechanisms to help us not think about it since it leads to anxiety - Martens et al. 2004: given instinct for self-preservation, ppl want to deny death oPeople find elderly threatening because they are reminders of our own death oMethod: presented participants with pictures of old and young people, then they had to do word completions (e.g. R_C_ is rice or race) primed with either young or old pictures oResult: those primed with old pictures made more death related words Ageist self-stereotypes - Self stereotype: Internalization of societal beliefs about traits associated with one’s group - Development of ageist self stereotypes oUbiquity of elderly stereotypes (even among children) oElderly stereotypes can operate below awareness oWhen young become old, and identify with elderly in-group, the stereotype that was held for a lifetime becomes self-stereotype
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