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PSYC12H3 (300)
Chapter 1

PSYC12H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 1: Stereotype


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC12H3
Professor
Michael Inzlicht
Chapter
1

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Chapter 1: Intro to Study of Stereotyping and Prejudice
-Membership in a group can be restricted on basis of skills, family, etc.
-By forming groups, can construct environment so that daily lives are easier.
-Researchers say tendency to form groups has withstood time and evolution
-Groups are basic building blocks of society.
-Some disadvantages and advantages to groups
-Tend to form closer ties with members of in group and reject, antagonize out group.
-Even when it is a minimal group, assigned arbitrarily, still see the in group bias.
-Prejudice: negative feelings about the outgroup
-Stereotypes: believing that certain characteristics are associated with certain groups
-Such ingroup behave may underlie more severe negative behave towards other groups.
-A logical analysis of intergroup hostility suggests that there is no rational basis for disliking others just
because they belong to another group.
-Why si study of prejudice and stereotyping so important? -> important to understand that such negative
attitudes form the basis for subsequent negative intergroup behav.
-Intergroup prejudice and hostility lead to unparalleled bloodshed in Yugoslavia, Rwanda, etc.
-Some fo the most intense intergroup hostility based on religious differences.
-Some believe that prej and stereotyping are no longer a problem in the US.
-Overt expressions of racial prej have decreased they havent disappeared.
-Various motivations (why), contexts & situations (when), indiv difference variables and traits (who) and
affective cognitive processes (how) that lead to prejudice.
Defining Stereotyping
Lippmanns ‘Stereotype
-stereotype derived from word meaning a printing process which fixed casts of material are reproduced.
-Journalist Walter Lippmann used word stereotype to describe tendency people think of someone or
something in similar terms (similar attributes) based on a common feature shared by each.
-Lippmann: We all have pictures inside our heads of outside world that are like templates into which we try
to simplify sometimes confusing info we receive from the world.
-Stereotypes tell us what social info is important to perceive and to disregard in our enviro.
-Tends to confirm preexisting stereotypes by paying attention to stereotype-consistent info and disregard info
that is inconsistent.
-Content of stereotypes determined largely by culture in which person lives.
Stereotyping: From Bad to Neutral
-Number of ways that researchers have defined stereotype over the decades
-Soon researchers saw stereotyping as a negative, lazy way of perceiving social groups.
-Was seen as an outward indicator of irrational, nonanalytic cognition
-Some thought it as rigid thinking and external sign of moral defectiveness.
-Began to move away from inclusion of assessments of the morality or correctness of the stereotype or
stereotyper.
-Nature of Prejudice, Allport defined stereotype: “a stereotype is an exaggerated belief associated with a
category.
-Others began to argue that stereotyping should be examined as a normal psych process.
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Social-Cog Division
-researchers began to see stereotyping as automatic process fo categorization that many cog and social
psychologists believe is inherent in nature of way humans think.
-Brigham: “a generalization made about a...group concerning a trait attribution which is considered to be
unjustified by an observer.
-But a stereotype is any generalization about a group whether an observer thinks its justified or not.
-Hamilton and Trolier:a cog structure that contains a perceivers knowledge, beliefs and expectations about
a human group.
-Too broad and inconsistent with trad’l definition and too close to schema.
-Schema: (Fisk & Taylor) a cog structure that reps knowledge abt a concept or type of stimulus, incl its
attributes and the relations among those attributes.
-Schemas are broader cog structures that contain our knowledge of stimuli, our feelings towards them.
-Ashmore and Del Boca: “stereotypes: a set of beliefs about the personal attributes of a group of people” ->
Most social-cog researchers define stereotypes like this.
Cultural and Indiv Stereotypes
-differentiate between cultural and indiv stereotypes.
-Cultural: shared or community-wide pattern of beliefs
-Individual: beliefs held by an indiv about characs of a group.
-Ashmore and Del Boca: adjective rating scales assess cultural stereotypes: inaccurate measure of persons
indiv stereotypes towards that group.
-Can’t tell if the individual actually believes those stereotypes or not. Contemporary researchers interested in
indiv stereotypes because these are most related directly to that persons specific thoughts, feelings and
behaves towards a given group.
Is Stereotype an Attitude?
-Attitude: general evaluation of some object.
-Some researchers believe similar to a stereotype.
-Attitudes usually fall in a good, bad scale.
-An attitude comprises:
i)Behavioural (discrimination)
ii)Affective (prejudice)
iii)Cognitive (stereotype)
-Discrimination: any negative behave directed toward an indiv based ont heir membership in a group.
-therefore a stereotype is not an attitude.
Positive vs. negative Stereotypes
-Researchers do not regard stereotypes as good or bad
-They are merely generalizations about groups.
Defining Prejudice
-Gardner: “prejudice can indicate a prejudgment about something, an evaluation toward a stimulus. Finally
said that the indiv has a negative evaluation of another stimulus.
Prejudice as a Negative Affect
-Researchers sued to define prejudice in terms of affective nature
-Allport: “an antipathy based on a faulty and inflexible generalization. May be felt or expressed. May be
directed towards a group or an indiv because he is a member of the group.
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-In such a model, prej is the affective component of the intergroup attitude.
-Most researchers have abandoned this definition in favour of more complex definitions.
Prejudice as an Attitude
-1960s and 70s: started looking at prejudice as an evaluation of a stimulus.
-Thus prejudice is essentially an attitude; seen to have a behavioural, cognitive and affective component too.
-Prejudice can also refer to positive prej in favour of their ingroup. -> Most research about negative though.
-Can be bsed on affective (anger), cognitive (beliefs) or behavioural (avoidant) sources and can result in cog,
behav or affective expressions.
-Usually affective source.
-Stangor, Sullivan & Ford: best predictor of negative outgroup prej is a lack fo positive emotions.
-Strong/explicit prej: negative feelings; Subtle/implicit: lack of positive emotions
-Jackson, Hodge et al.: assessed cog, behav and affective behaves of white college students towards minority
groups. Affect and behave were strongest indicators of grp attitude.
-Eagly & Diekman: “attitude-in-context. Prej is not inflexible; depends on match b/w social role into which
stereotyped indiv is trying to fit and beliefs of perceiver about the attributes tht are req’d for success in tht
role.
-According to them, prej most likely to be displayed toward a disadvantaged group when tht group tries to
move into roles for which they are deemed to beunqualified’.
-Criticism of prejudice-as-attitude approach:
(1) some assert tht an attitude is not the same as affect. If prej is an affect based reaction to a stimulus group,
then the evaluation fo a group cannot be the same as prej.
(2) Devine: notion that prej ahs three components is problemative b/c research shows that they are not always
consistent.
Prejudice as Social Emotion
-Smith: draws on appraisal theories of emotion and self-categorizationt ehory to suggest a new way fo
thinking about prej.
-Self-categorization theory: people view themselves as a member of a social category or group
-This serves to enhance perception of the outgroup as homogenous.
-Tend to be strongly linked to ones self-identity; thus have salient motivational and affective consequences
-Smith and Ellsworth: appraisal is a set of cognitions tht are attached to a specific emotion.
-Emotion: in appraisal theory is triggered by an assessment of adaptive significance and self-relevance of
the ppl and events in ones enviro.
-Smith: appraisals invariable concern the self because they ahev to do with goals of the indiv
-Two things make Smiths model useful:
i)he says we have specific feelings towards group, cant say simply positive or negative
ii)can have prejudice against group but have genuinely positive attitudes towards a specific member of the
group.
-subtyping: exception to the prejudice to get around dissonance.
-How we react to any given outgroup member depends on:
i)what self-category is salient for us at the moment
ii)context of the interaction
iii)how tht person helps/hinders our movement towards salient personal or group goals at the time.
-little consensus on a single definition
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