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Chapter 9

Chapter 9 Psychology of Prejudice Book

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Michael Inzlicht

Chapter 9 – Reducing Prejudice 1. The Contact Hypothesis 1.1. People fear the unknown, i.e., the outgroups 1.2. The remedy for this fear is to eliminate the fear of the unknown by having the groups get to know each other 1.3. Encourage more contact between the groups 1.4. Contact hypothesis – proposes that increasing exposure to members of various groups can increase positive evaluations of the outgroup and decrease prejudice and stereotyping 1.5. Allport’s Contact Hypothesis 1.5.1.His idea that when we put people of different groups together, they naturally work it out and get to know one another 1.5.2.However researches have shown that mere contact is ineffective in changing racial attitudes 1.5.3.Upon viewing the member of the outgroup, stereotypes and negative affect are elicited even prior to the interaction 1.5.4.The stereotype filters the perception of the interaction in ways that confirm the stereotypes about the outgroup; the causal contact has left matters worse than before 1.5.5.Research indicate that in many situations of mere contact, roughly 50% of the interactants felt more positive about the outgroup, but the other 50% of the time people felt more negative toward the outgroup 1.5.6.Allport recognized that a whole host of factors affect the intergroup-contact context and influence whether participants emerge from the situation with more positive or more negative attitudes toward the outgroup 1.5.7.Allport specified that at least four fundamental criteria must be met for positive intergroup contact to occur: Equal-status members Common goals Intergroup cooperation Support of legitimate authority 1.5.8.Two more variables offered by other researches There must be a favorable climate for intergroup contact The contact must be of an intimate rather than a casual nature Also, Pettigrew adds another factor: the contact situation have “friendship potential” 1.6. Tests of the Contact Hypothesis 1.6.1.When whites and blacks were brought into contact in the work arena, each group reported more positive feelings about the other 1.6.2.In desegregated public housing, equal-status contact between white and African American neighbours resulted in much more favorable attitudes of the white individuals toward equal-housing policies 1.6.3.African Americans in a desegregated housing project had more positive attitudes toward their white neighbours than did their segregated African American counterparts 1.6.4.Research on prejudiced white women which got into contacts with black women on a daily basis showed significant positive change in racial attitudes toward African Americans 1.6.5.A key point of confusion among some researchers about the contact hypothesis is between the essential factors and facilitative factors 1.6.6.Pettigrew highlights two other problems with the contact hypothesis research Research tends to focus on when and why contact will result in positive intergroup attitudes, but it does not speak to how this change in attitudes occurs in the contact situation Contact hypothesis does not specify how positive feelings toward an outgroup member in the contact situation can generalize to one’s feelings for the whole outgroup 1.7. Pettigrew’s Reformulated Contact Theory 2. Sherif’s Robber’s Cave Study: The Superordinate Goal 2.1. Realistic conflict theory – when two groups compete for scarce resources, prejudice and stereotypes between the two groups will result 2.1.1.When groups are in conflict, they think of the outgroup in stereotyped ways, and they begin to feel hostility toward the outgroup 2.1.2.In Sherif’s Robber’s Cave study – Sherif had two groups of boys at a summer camp compete for a scarce resource. Prejudice erupted between the groups. Sherif then shifted the experiment to attempt to reduce prejudice. Sherif then reasoned that if intergroup competition increased prejudice, perhaps cooperation between groups would reduce or eliminate prejudice 2.1.3.Superordinate goal – problems that the groups could work on together, in that no group could remedy the situation alone 2.2. Sherif showed that prejudice and outgroup hostility can be caused by competition, but can be greatly reduced via intergroup cooperation on a superordinate goal 2.3. Common Ingroup Identity 2.3.1.There is great evidence that support the idea that prejudice can be reduced through encouragement of superordinate ingroup identities 2.3.2.This is done by breaking down the salience of the groups’ category membership and by getting the groups to reconceptualise themselves as all members of a larger ingroup identity 2.3.3.When testing for the common ingroup identity model, Dovidio found that when people in 2 minimal groups felt more positive affect (e.g., receiving candy), and when groups were made to feel less distinct (e.g., through clothing), they were more likely to view their own group and other group as members of one large group with shared goals 2.3.4.This shows that paradoxically, the processes that lead to ingroup favouritism can be used to promote a superordinate ingroup identity and to reduce ingroup/outgroup distinctions, thereby reducing prejudice 2.3.5.Other researches on the common ingroup identity has found that holding two separate group identities (one’s ingroup, and the common ingroup identity) can actually lead to increase likelihood of prejudice toward the outgroup (members within the common ingroup identity that is not a part of one’s ingroup) 2.3.6.This is because people tend to view members of their own ingroup as prototypical of the common ingroup identity and regard all other common ingroup members as even more different from them 3. The “Confrontation Technique” of Rokeach 3.1. “American dilemma” – many white Americans have egalitarian beliefs but still harbour prejudiced tendencies, and therefore, they feel a moral conflict 3.2. Cognitive-dissonance theory – when people experience inconsistencies between their thoughts and behaviours, they will feel negative arousal 3.2.1.This arousal motivate them to choose the easiest factor to change (attitude) to bring it in line with the other factor (behaviour) and reduce the negative arousal 3.3. Rokeach believed that when people are made aware of the discrepancy between their self-views and their values, they changed their values, and this value change led to changes in their attitude and behaviour toward outgroups 3.4. Altemeyer used the confrontation procedure with people high in RWA 3.5. Remember that RWA: high degree of submission, aggression, and conventionalism 3.6. Most people high and low on RWA preferred freedom over equality 3.7. The results on the confrontational approach yielded mixed results 4. The Jigsaw Classroom 4.1. Aronson found out that the typical elementary classroom environment in the States is based on competition between students for the attention of the teacher. Students who are called on frequently and who are correct in their answers feel better about themselves, and perform better than their classmates, yet are often resented by their peers 4.2. Right after desegregation, black students were moved to predominantly white schools. Because whites received better education, black students were at a disadvantage 4.3. Researchers want individual competitiveness incompatible with success and set up the classroom such that success only resulted from cooperation 4.4. Aronson came up with the jigsaw system – the interdependence reduced the need for competition, and it also discouraged ridicule of others in their group. Thus, students were motivated to help each other. In doing so, their preconceptions about the outgroup members slowly eroded in light of these positive experiences 4.5. Results showed that children in jigsaw classrooms liked their group members more than others in the classroom; cooperative jigsaw settings are effective in increasing positive intergroup attitudes and behaviour and in decreasing stereotyping and prejudice 4.6. The positive benefits of cooperative group situation could be enhanced when: 4.6.1.Group is successful 4.6.2.Outgroup members are seen as competent 4.6.3.Group members self-disclose to each other 4.6.4.Group members are seen as similar 4.7. Researches have uncovered a few important factors that can facilitate generalization from one’s positive feelings about outgroup members in the sm
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