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Chapter 11

Chapter 11.docx

by OneClass47457 , Winter 2014
14 Pages
Winter 2014

Course Code
ANTH 2160
Dan Yarmey

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Chapter 11 11/30/2013
Stereotype- a belief that associates a whole group of people with a certain trait
Prejudice- hostile or negative feelings about people based on their membership in
a certain group
Discrimination- behaviour directed against people solely because of their
membership in a particular group
Steve Fein & Steven Spencer: conducted a study at a school where there was a
strong negative stereotype against Jewish American women, but not about Italian
American women. Participants where given either positive or negative feedback
about their intelligence. They were then asked to evaluate a job candidate, one was
portrayed as a Jewish candidate, and the other an Italian one. Those who received
the negative feedback about their intelligence rated Jewish candidates more
negatively. There was no difference in ratings for the candidates for those who
received positive feedback.
Studies established that individuals who consciously feel good about themselves
but who harbor self-doubts and insecurities at less conscious levels behave more
defensively by, for example, rationalizing their decisions more.
Social Learning
If a child hears a parent express negative attitudes about people who hold
different religious beliefs from their own, or sees a parent avoid interactions
with people with such beliefs, the child is likely to form negative beliefs about
those people.
Whites who hear someone express racial views express weaker antiracist
positions than those without such exposure.
Social learning is one explanation for why people are often willing to express
certain types of prejudice, but not others. People learn to avoid discriminating
against those in the “not acceptable” category such as the blind or mentally
In one study, it was found that students who were high in prejudice and who
received the information that their views were held by others believed that a
greater percentage of Blacks possessed more negative traits and fewer positive
traits than those who learned their views were not shared by others.
In one study, it was revealed that those with low prejudice express more warmth
toward the Aboriginal partner after reading multicultural message. On the other
hand, those who have a negative tendency toward the out group, are more likely
to feel threatened after reading a multicultural message and express less warmth
toward their Aboriginal partner
Social Categorization: the practice of classifying people into in-groups or out-
groups based on attributes that the person has in common with the in-group or out-
Social categorization can be done on meaningless grounds, such as eye colour,
shoe size or province you live.
The classification of people into 2 groups has two consequences that contributes
to stereotyping: the outgroup homogeneity and in-group favourtism.
The out-group homogeneity effect- people’s tendency to underestimate the
variability of outgroup members compared to the variability of in-group members
jurors give shorter sentences to those accused of crimes in same ethnic group
people are motivated to favour those in the in-group because those people are
more likely to favour us in return
acquired early in life and remains stable throughout
people rate words associated with in-group (ie. us, we) more positively than
those referring to out-group (ie. they, them)
this suggests in-group preference works at an automatic level
increases when people heavily identify with the in-group and when group
norms are more salient
social dominance orientation: personality variable describing the extent to
which one wants his/her in-group to dominate and be superior to out-groups
people who are high in this show higher levels of in-group favouritism
people who believe their own group should dominate over others are more
prejudiced against people in lower status group
Realistic Group Conflict Theory
theory that competition between groups for resources leads to conflict
animosity between groups motivated by peoples self-interest in terms of
competition for jobs, land and power
modern racism: underlying prejudice where peoples negative feelings about
out-group members are not rooted specifically in their group membership (ie.
race/gender) but in more general beliefs about peoples moral values
ie. discrimination against Mexican people not caused by racism per se, but by
the belief that Mexicans do not work hard enough, etc
relative deprivation: feeling of discontent caused by belief that one fares poorly
compared to people in other groups
occurs even in absence of absolute deprivation (when ones access to resources
if directly threatened by another group)
causes strong negative attitudes toward out-group members, as do people who
believe they’re more advantaged than others
prejudice can be caused by intergroup competition for resources and can also be
used to justify preferential treatment of your own group
Social Identity Theory: The Role of Self-Esteem
each person strives to enhance his/her self-esteem, which is made up of 2
parts: personal identity and social identity
people favour in-groups vs. out-groups in order to enhance their self-esteem
affiliating with successful groups increases own feelings of self-worth
threats to self-esteem can increase need for in-group favouritism
expressing prejudice/discrimination towards out-group members also
enhances ones self-esteem – especially for those who strongly identify with in-
people with high self-esteem more likely to respond to threats by
discriminating against out-group than those with low self-esteem
size of in-group needs to be small enough for people to feel unique
minority groups tend to have greater group loyalty
people who have marginal status in the in-group are more likely to
discriminate against out-group members, particularly in presence of in-group

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Chapter 11  11/30/2013 Stereotype­ a belief that associates a whole group of people with a certain trait Prejudice­ hostile or negative feelings about people based on their membership in  a certain group Discrimination­ behaviour directed against people solely because of their  membership in a particular group   Steve Fein & Steven Spencer: conducted a study at a school where there was a  strong negative stereotype against Jewish American women, but not about Italian  American women. Participants where given either positive or negative feedback  about their intelligence. They were then asked to evaluate a job candidate, one was  portrayed as a Jewish candidate, and the other an Italian one. Those who received  the negative feedback about their intelligence rated Jewish candidates more  negatively. There was no difference in ratings for the candidates for those who  received positive feedback. Studies established that individuals who consciously feel good about themselves  but who harbor self­doubts and insecurities at less conscious levels behave more  defensively by, for example, rationalizing their decisions more. Social Learning • If a child hears a parent express negative attitudes about people who hold  different religious beliefs from their own, or sees a parent avoid interactions  with people with such beliefs, the child is likely to form negative beliefs about  those people. • Whites who hear someone express racial views express weaker antiracist  positions than those without such exposure. • Social learning is one explanation for why people are often willing to express  certain types of prejudice, but not others. People learn to avoid discriminating  against those in the “not acceptable” category such as the blind or mentally  disabled. • In one study, it was found that students who were high in prejudice and who  received the information that their views were held by others believed that a  greater percentage of Blacks possessed more negative traits and fewer positive  traits than those who learned their views were not shared by others. • In one study, it was revealed that those with low prejudice express more warmth  toward the Aboriginal partner after reading multicultural message. On the other  hand, those who have a negative tendency toward the out group, are more likely  to feel threatened after reading a multicultural message and express less warmth  toward their Aboriginal partner Social Categorization: the practice of classifying people into in­groups or out­ groups based on attributes that the person has in common with the in­group or out­ group. • Social categorization can be done on meaningless grounds, such as eye colour,  shoe size or province you live. • The classification of people into 2 groups has two consequences that contributes  to stereotyping: the outgroup homogeneity and in­group favourtism. The out­group homogeneity effect­ people’s tendency to underestimate the  variability of outgroup members compared to the variability of in­group members • jurors give shorter sentences to those accused of crimes in same ethnic group  • people are motivated to favour those in the in­group because those people are  more likely to favour us in return  • acquired early in life and remains stable throughout  • people rate words associated with in­group (ie. us, we) more positively than  those referring to out­group (ie. they, them) • this suggests in­group preference works at an automatic level  • increases when people heavily identify with the in­group and when group  norms are more salient  • social dominance orientation: personality variable describing the extent to  which one wants his/her in­group to dominate and be superior to out­groups  • people who are high in this show higher levels of in­group favouritism • people who believe their own group should dominate over others are more  prejudiced against people in lower status group  Realistic Group Conflict Theory • theory that competition between groups for resources leads to conflict • animosity between groups motivated by people’s self­interest in terms of  competition for jobs, land and power  • modern racism: underlying prejudice where people’s negative feelings about  out­group members are not rooted specifically in their group membership (ie.  race/gender) but in more general beliefs about people’s moral values  •  ie. discrimination against Mexican people not caused by racism per se, but by  the belief that Mexicans do not work hard enough, etc  • relative deprivation: feeling of discontent caused by belief that one fares poorly  compared to people in other groups  • occurs even in absence of absolute deprivation (when one’s access to resources  if directly threatened by another group)  • causes strong negative attitudes toward out­group members, as do people who  believe they’re more advantaged than others  • prejudice can be caused by intergroup competition for resources and can also be  used to justify preferential treatment of your own group  Social Identity Theory: The Role of Self­Esteem • each person strives to enhance his/her self­esteem, which is made up of 2  parts: personal identity and social identity  • people favour in­groups vs. out­groups in order to enhance their self­esteem  • affiliating with successful groups increases own feelings of self­worth  • threats to self­esteem can increase need for in­group favouritism • expressing prejudice/discrimination towards out­group members also  enhances one’s self­esteem – especially for those who strongly identify with in­ group  • people with high self­esteem more likely to respond to threats by  discriminating against out­group than those with low self­esteem  • size of in­group needs to be small enough for people to feel unique • minority groups tend to have greater group loyalty  • people who have marginal status in the in­group are more likely to  discriminate against out­group members, particularly in presence of in­group  members  • when people feel identity is threatened, often act hostilely to members of  other groups to increase feelings of self­worth  • groups threatened with inferiority take pleasure at another group’s failure,  even when failure won’t directly affect them  Cognitive Biases • people use shortcuts in thinking (re: Chapter 5), which cause faulty problem­ solving that sometimes lead to stereotyping  • biases include:  • illusory correlation: tendency to see a correlation between two events when  in reality there is no association  • ie. Anne Frank wrote “What one Christian does is his own responsibility,  what one Jew does is thrown back at all Jews.”  • People play close attention to things that are novel/unique • People who are distinctive stick out more (are more salient) • Behaviours committed by small/rare groups are more memorable Tokenism: individuals serve as the only representative of their group in a larger  setting  • token person has greater impact on whatever happens in the group, is  evaluated more extremely, and is more likely to be remembered  • being the token person makes people feel very uncomfortable, and in many  ways this can explain why token persons tend to experience worse performance  in these types of situations  • Ultimate attribution error: error when people make dispositional attributions  for negative behaviour and situational attributions for positive behaviour by  out­group members, yet show the reverse attributions for successes and failures  for in­group members  • Ie. white students read a statement that says a white person was fired • more likely to attribute the firing to situational pressures and circumstances  beyond their control  • White students read statement that says black person was fired – more likely  to attribute firing to internal factors like personality and intelligence  • Making attributions help us feel safe in an unpredictable world – helps us  believe that bad things won’t happen to us  • Belief in a just world: phenomenon where people believe that bad things  happen to bad people and good things happen to good people • Both these attitudes lead to scapegoating and “blaming the victim” • Contrast effect: people perceive stimuli that are different from their  expectations as more different than they actually are  • Shifting standards model – people w/in group are compared to others within  that group more than they are compared to people in other groups • Perceptual confirmation: tendency for people to see things in line with their  own beliefs and expectations  • Ie. people see mental patients’ behaviour as abnormal, view other athletic  teams as more unfairly aggressive than our own, underestimate crawling ability  in baby girls and overestimate it in baby boys  • Stereotypes cause people to recall certain information about a person that is  consistent with their expectations – they interpret and encode that info in  distinct ways  • We require fewer examples to confirm our beliefs about a trait that is highly  stereotypical of a person in an out­ group than for a person in our in­group  • Ie. young person loses their keys = just forgetful / grandpa loses his keys =  he is experiencing serious memory loss  • Confirmation bias: tendency to search for information that confirms one’s  existing beliefs and to avoid information which contradicts these  • People ask questions designed to confirm expectations – this protects them  from acquiring/using disconfirming information  • People ignore information that disputes expectations  • More likely to remember stereotype­consistent information – forget/ignore  non­consistent info  • People who are unprejudiced pay more attention to stereotype­disconfirming  information  • Research focus on gender: people see female­dominated occupatio
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