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Lecture 2: Origin of Stereotypes

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Michael Inzlicht

Week 2: Origins of stereotypes Overview Movie True Colours - Discussion Origin of Stereotypes  Cognitive  Environmental  Socio-cultural & Motivational Announcements Prerequisite check beginning next week Ayres & Siegelman, (1995) Initial Quote for a new car by race and gender (ref slide 4 for chart)  Black males are quoted at a higher price than white females and males, and black females  Although, Black females are also quoted higher than both white males and females Discrimination when buying a new car  How would we study the existence of race/gender discrimination in car buying?  Age, physical differences, SES, any previous knowledge of the current study for which they have volunteered for, etc.  4 twin testers:  Age  Ed  Attractiveness  Dress  Script  same dealer  same car  This control is necessary in order to find precise differences  Why would salespeople:  Ask more money from women?  Ask more money from Blacks? Movie Time: True Colours Ask yourself:  Why does discrimination exist?  Why do stereotypes exist  Take notes on movie and prepare to speak! Origins of Stereotypes: 1. Cognitive Categorization  Hassidic Jews: black hats, black suits, beards, ringlet “sideburns”, religious  Stereotypes occur from categorization  Heuristics; to generalize; (Memcog)create a prototypic mental idea of things in order to remember more important things  Why categorize?  Infinite number of stimuli in environment but Limited capacity cognitive system (7+/- items)  Allows for us to save cognitive energy which we can use on more complex/important items  Thus we can simplify the world  Essential part of learning  Thus, we don’t have to re-learn things  Occurs spontaneously: categorization is subconscious  70s study  P watch 6 people interacting (3w&m), and asked to match the quotes to one of the 6 interacters  They subconsciously categorized male phrases and female phrases by attributing them accordingly, despite being spoken by opposite sex Categorization & Stereotypes  Stereotypes are traits associated with category  Can be useful in making predictions  Are based on a “kernel of truth”  Are fast & efficient  Problem: they are over-generalizations; especially when applied to an individual  What is true about a whole population in general, may not apply to one individual within that same population 2. Groups  Categorize world into in-groups & out-groups  In-group: Groups to which we belong  Out-group: Groups to which we do not belong  This simplifies social world  Us vs. Them  Categorizing accent uates inter-group differences  Eg) despite similarities b/w tutsis and hutus, due to different in labels, their differences appeared larger and more prominent than they actually were; same thing for the religious branches of Christianity  IG bias: Tend to think positively of in-group,  Even minimal groups  Eg) camp where children are grouped by coloured shirts showed in-group favouritism and out-group prejudice and out-group bias  OG homogeneity: Tend to think of out-groups as all the same,  We see individual differences b/w people within our group,
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