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Chapter 9

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University of Toronto St. George
Jennifer Fortune

Chapter 9 Stereotypes, Prejudice, and Discrimination Prejudice a negative attitude toward members of a group, which is often very strongly held Discrimination negative, harmful behaviour toward people based on their group membership Genocide an attempt to systematically eliminate an ethnic group through banishment or murder Prejudice and Discrimination Today Aversive racism a modern kind of racism, those who believe they are not discriminatory or prejudice to minority groups but still harbor underlying prejudice toward members of minority groups. -an aversive racist can find prejudice upsetting but can become discriminatory/racist towards a minority group when the situation calls for it and thus feels justified -Dovideio and Gaertner (2000) released a study on explicit prejudice and prejudice that is masked by a circumstance in 1989 and 1999 -hypothesized that explicit prejudice would be greater in 1989 than in 1999 but there would be little change in discriminatory behaviour when circumstances provided an excuse in the 10 year gap -pps asked whether they would mind if a Black family with about the same income and education as their own would move next to their home(tests for explicit prejudice) -pps were then asked to recommend candidates for a counselling position -candidates were Black or White, with strong, ambiguous, and weak qualifications -explicit prejudice was seen less in 1999 than in 1989 -candidates with strong qualifications were recommended, black or white -candidates with weak qualifications were not recommended, black or white -however, candidates with ambiguous qualifications that were white were more recommended than those who were black -therefore showed no change in prejudice within the 10 year gap Stereotypes : Cognitive Sources of Prejudice and Discrimination -stereotypes are effortless and efficient, and thus guide us to behavioural decisions quickly Two Costs of Stereotypes: Oversimplification and Negativity -one cost to stereotypes is oversimplifcation -stereotypes towards inanimate objects and plants are accurate because of the uniformity within the category -human stereotypes are not the same, theres much variety and diversity within an ethnic group, nationalities, genders, and occupations -using a stereotype to generalize an entire group may not always be accurate because of the uniqueness of each individual -another cost to stereotypes is the possible negativity that comes with it -many things can cause a stereotype to be negative -competition usually harbors negative stereotypes towards the group that the perceiver is competing against for desired resources -the mood youre in also affects whether your stereotype is negative or positive i.e., close-knit immigrants may be seen as neutral/positive(family loving) but when perceiver is in bad mood, the closeness can be interpretted as secretive/cliquish -unfamiliarity can also spark negative stereotypes; feel anxious/uncomfortable with group you are not familiar with Stereotypes Distort Information Processing Stereotypes Guide Attention -stereotypes can distort our information by guiding our attention to information that confirms our stereotype -a study conducted by Galen Bodenhausen (1988) confirms the idea that stereotypes guide our attention -24 year old man accused of criminal assault, with mixed evidence that supported a guilty and innocent verdicts -some pps learned that the name of the assailant was Robert Johnson of Dayton, Ohio or Carolos Ramirez of Albuquerque, New Mexico -Bodenhausen believed that pps would have a higher recall of evidence for a guilty verdict if given the Hispanic name than the white name -pps who were given the hispanic name recalled more evidence leading to a guilty verdict, they also gave more extreme judgements of guilt -shows pps attention were more focused on the evidence leading to a guilty verdict when they believed the accused had the Hispanic name Stereotypes Guide Interpretation -stereotypes also affect how we interpret the behaviour of others; ambiguous behaviour tend to be interpretted as consistent with expectations -even behaviours that dont support the stereotype will strengthen the stereotype -Andrew Sagar and Janet Schofield (1980) made a study regarding ambiguous behaviour and racial context -pps were shown drawings of a black or white model engaged in potentially aggressive behaviour -hypothesized that the exact same action would be considered more aggressive for black models than white models(stereotype of black people is theyre aggressive/hostile) -pps rated behaviour as more aggressive when performed by black model than white model -pps were both black and white, but both pp groups showed the bias in interpretation -shows its a knowledge of a cultural stereotype rather than personal prejudice -study conducted by Correll, Park, Judd, and Wittenbrink (2002) -White pps were asked to decide as quickly as possible if the person was unarmed or armed -target person was white or black -armed target held a silver revolver or a black pistol -unarmed target held an aluminum can, silver camera, black cellphone or black wallet -pps were faster to correctly judge the black targets as armed than to judge correctly that white targets were armed -shows that pps are primed by the stereotype of black men being aggressive/hostile and thus identify black target as armed more quickly than a white target -pps were slower to judge correctly that the black targets were unarmed than to judge correctly that white targets were unarmed -the stereotype of black men slowed down their judgments -pps were also more likely to erroneously press the shoot button when presented with an unarmed black man -same for dont shoot button when presented with armed white men -pps assume that black men are more likely to be armed than white men, and that white men are more likely to be unarmed than black men -results dont mean pps are prejudiced towards black targets -same findings and results were seen when participants were black -shows knowledge of a cultural stereotype fueled this experiment, not personal prejudice The Potential Vicious Cycle of Stereotypes -the stereotypes we have of a certain group of people can determine our behaviour towards them -but does that guided behaviour in turn affect how that group of people behaves towards us? i.e., meeting with a paranoid schizophrenic patient, we have preconceptions of these patients as being hostile, unpredictable and possibly dangerous so we act accordingly by being nervous, distant and defensive. Patient can tell youre behaving in a negative way towards him, he believes you dont like him and thus acts negatively towards you, thus confirming your expectations of him(self-fulfilling prophecy) Self-Fulfilling Prophecies Self-fulfilling prophecies a process in which a perceivers expectancy about a target person influences the perceivers behaviour towards the target person in such a way as to elicit the expected actions from the target person Do Stereotypes Influence Our Perceptions If We Disagree with Them? Subliminal priming procedure a method of activating a schema or stereotype by flashing words or pictures very briefly on a computer screen in front of a participant -Patricia Devine (1989) conducted an experiment using subliminal priming procedure to see whether stereotypes would influence our perceptions, even if we disagree with them
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