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HLTC22H3 (102)
Chapter 5

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Health Studies
Michelle Silver

Chapter 5: Old­Fashioned versus Modern Prejudice WHERE HAVE ALLTHE BIGOTS GONE? From Katz and Braly to Civil Rights, and Beyond Katz and Braly – Caucasians held very negative views ofAfricanAmericans and positive views of Caucasians Are Low-Prejudice People Really Low-Prejudice? Results using the checklist method may provide stereotypes that are more a function of the words presented on a list than of the schematic content of the respondents’stereotypes Other researchers suggest that the Katz and Braly procedure does not, as commonly believed, measure knowledge about stereotypes, but rather personal beliefs about the truth of the stereotype Although personal beliefs in negative stereotypes ofAfricanAmericans appear to have decreased, knowledge of the cultural stereotype ofAfricanAmericans has remained the same Caucasians rather unanimously know about the negative things (and few positive things( that are stereotypically associated withAfricanAmericans via their early learning from their parents or through other exposure to such information in society. Yet what has seemed to change is their willingness to personally believe, and also overtly express, such negative racial attitudes. Stereotypes has not changed much over the last century, but the form in which they are expressed has changed MODERN RACISM According to McConahay, the theory of Modern Racism asserts that some Whites are ambivalent towardAfricanAmericans, conflicted between their anti-Black feelings and their beliefs that racism and discrimination are wrong For modern racists, the issue is not whetherAfricanAmericans should be equal, but how that equality should be implemented in policy, law, and employment. Modern racists believe that (1) discrimination is a thing of the past; (2)African Americans are too pushy, trying to get into places where they are not welcome; (3) the demands ofAfricanAmericans are unfair; and (4)AfricanAmericans’gains (bolstered by social programs that provide economic, housing, and other opportunities) are undeserved and unfair Their subtle negative feelings are disguised, in order to prevent the dissonance associated with acknowledging the hypocrisy of prejudice and egalitarian values, as negative attitudes toward anyone who violates what they believe are traditionalAmerican values For over a decade, the Modern Racism Scale (MRS) was one of the most widely used measures of contemporary prejudice towardAfricanAmericans SYMBOLIC RACISM Symbolic racism – a blend of anti-Black affect and traditionalAmerican moral values embodied in the Protestant Ethic Whites who would be classified as symbolic racists tend to resist changing the racial status quo (i.e., White dominance) in all areas of life Symbolic is used to describe this resistance that originates not out of self-interest but out of the general belief that Blacks violate traditionalAmerican values (such as self-reliance, individualism, hard work, obedience) The symbolic racist can also deny holding racist attitudes, because in their view, a racist is one who exhibits old-fashioned racist beliefs of the inherent superiority of one race over another, as well as negative affect toward a group based on such beliefs Because their view of how closely the other group is adhering to values (hard word, self reliance, etc.) is tainted by their prejudice, it is unlikely that that group would ever be perceived as adhering to those ideals It highlights the importance of the link between values and racial attitudes AVERSIVE RACISM Aversive racism is used to describe WhiteAmericans who possess these racist beliefs and feelings alongside strong egalitarian values It reflects an ambivalence in Caucasians between their learned negative attitudes (from early childhood to adulthood) towardAfricanAmericans, and their commitment to egalitarian values and beliefs They truly believe they are not prejudiced They experience more subtle feelings of discomfort, uneasiness, disgust and sometimes fear in the presence of African Americans SUMMARY OF CONTEMPORARYTHEORIES OF PREJUDICE Symbolic and modern racism differ from aversive racism in that they are found primarily in political conservatives, whereas aversive racism is associated with liberals The clashes with regard to perceptions of how various racial out-groups violate these cherished values lead Whites to feel ambivalent, or conflicted, toward Blacks. The stronger their ambivalence, the more inconsistent their behaviour will be toward Blacks. Relatively minor aspects of the situation can influence the Caucasian’s racial attitude and behaviour to be either positive or negative toward Blacks MEASURES OF STEREOTYPINGAND PREJUDICE The Self-Report Questionnaire Sometimes, as in opinion polls or interviews, the respondent is asked about their attitudes on a variety of topics, then the questioner records the reply on the questionnaire or in the computer database. Amore efficient way is to have them complete a questionnaire themselves (self-report) – you can obtain a large volume of attitude data from lots of people very quickly Drawbacks: • The responses to the questions are usually restricted to the response alternatives provided on the questionnaire (unless it is a free-response) • People do not always provide their true attitudes on self-report measures This tendency to present oneself in a positive light is termed social desirability, and it presents a big obstacle for the attitude researcher There are several ways that the researcher can decrease the influence of social desirability in the subject’s responses. The researcher can tell the subjects that their responses will be completely anonymous or confidential. This helps anxiety that subjects may have about their responses being attributable to them. Honesty in responding to the questionnaire or the researcher’s questions is emphasized in hope of appealing to the participants’desire to be a good subject by correctly following directions and helping the researcher. Aspects of a questionnaire and testing situation that encourage subjects to make their own hypotheses about what answers are expected or what is being measured are called demand characteristics, and these represent an unwanted bias in the research. If the subject is responding to his or her own ideas of what the questionnaire is measuring, then they are not providing their truthful opinions on the items The research may use “filler items” in the questionnaire, in order to make the purpose of the questionnaire less obvious to the respondent The Bogus Pipeline In the bogus pipeline technique, devised by Jones and Si
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