Throughout this module we have debated how people interact and also influence one another’s thoughts, feelings, and also behaviors in both hopeful and an unfavorable ways. World can work together to achieve an excellent things, such together helping each other in emergencies: recall the heroism presented during the 9/11 terrorist attacks. People additionally can do an excellent harm come one another, such together conforming to group norms that space immoral and also obeying government to the point of murder: consider the massive conformity the Nazis during WWII. In this section we will comment on a an unfavorable side of person behavior—prejudice, discrimination, and also aggression.

You are watching: _____ refers to a negative (or positive) evaluation of a particular group and its members.

Learning Objectives

Define and carry out examples of prejudice, stereotypes, and also discriminationExplain why prejudice and discrimination exist when demonstrating an knowledge of scapegoat theory, in-groups, and out-groups

Human conflict can an outcome in crime, war, and mass murder, such together genocide. Prejudice and discrimination frequently are root causes of human conflict, which defines how strangers involved hate one an additional to the extreme of leading to others harm. Prejudice and also discrimination affect everyone. In this ar we will examine the meanings of prejudice and also discrimination, examples of these concepts, and causes of these biases.


Figure 1. Prejudice and discrimination occur throughout the globe. (a) A 1939 authorize in German-occupied Poland warns “No Entrance because that Poles!” (b) one African-American male drink from a designated “colored” water fractional in Oklahoma in 1939 throughout the era of racial segregation as a practice of discrimination. (c) A member of the Westboro Baptist Church, widely identified as a hate group, engages in discrimination based on religion and sexual orientation. (credit b: change of occupational by United states Farm defense Administration; credit c: alteration of work-related by “JCWilmore”/Wikimedia Commons)

Understanding Prejudice and Discrimination

As we questioned in the opened story the Trayvon Martin, human beings are really diverse and although us share numerous similarities, we likewise have plenty of differences. The social groups we belong come help type our identities (Tajfel, 1974). These distinctions may be an overwhelming for some people to reconcile, i m sorry may lead to prejudice toward world who space different. Prejudice is a negative attitude and feeling towards an individual based specifically on one’s membership in a specific social team (Allport, 1954; Brown, 2010). Prejudice is common against people who room members of one unfamiliar cultural group. Thus, certain varieties of education, contact, interactions, and also building relationships through members that different cultural groups can reduce the propensity toward prejudice. In fact, merely imagining interacting with members that different cultural groups might affect prejudice. Indeed, when speculative participants were asked come imagine us positively interacting with someone from a different group, this resulted in an increased positive perspective toward the other group and rise in positive traits linked with the other group. Furthermore, imagined social interaction can reduce anxiety associated with inter-group interaction (Crisp & Turner, 2009). What space some examples of social teams that friend belong to that add to your identity? Social teams can include gender, race, ethnicity, nationality, society class, religion, sexual orientation, profession, and also many more. And, as is true for social roles, you deserve to simultaneously be a member of much more than one social group. An instance of prejudice is having a negative attitude toward world who are not born in the united States. Although human being holding this prejudiced perspective do not understand all civilization who were no born in the united States, they dislike them because of their condition as foreigners.

Can girlfriend think of a prejudiced attitude you have held toward a team of people? exactly how did your prejudice develop? Prejudice often starts in the type of a stereotype—that is, a negative belief around individuals based specifically on their membership in a group, regardless of your individual characteristics. Stereotypes end up being overgeneralized and applied to every members that a group. For example, someone holding prejudiced mindsets toward older adults, may believe that larger adults space slow and incompetent (Cuddy, Norton, & Fiske, 2005; Nelson, 2004). Us cannot possibly know each individual human of advanced age to know that every older adults space slow and also incompetent. Therefore, this negative belief is overgeneralized to every members of the group, also though plenty of of the individual team members might in reality be spry and also intelligent.

Another example of a popular stereotype entails beliefs about racial differences among athletes. Together Hodge, Burden, Robinson, and Bennett (2008) point out, black color male athletes room often believed to be an ext athletic, yet less intelligent, than their White masculine counterparts. These beliefs persist despite a number of high profile examples to the contrary. Sadly, such ideas often influence how these athletes room treated by others and how they watch themselves and their very own capabilities. Even if it is or not you agree through a stereotype, stereotypes are generally popular within in a given culture (Devine, 1989).

Sometimes world will act on their prejudiced attitudes toward a group of people, and this habits is recognized as discrimination. Discrimination is an adverse action toward an individual as a an outcome of one’s membership in a particular group (Allport, 1954; Dovidio & Gaertner, 2004). Together a an outcome of holding an adverse beliefs (stereotypes) and negative attitudes (prejudice) about a particular group, human being often treat the target of prejudice poorly, such as excluding older adult from their circle the friends. Table 1 summarizes the qualities of stereotypes, prejudice, and also discrimination. Have actually you ever before been the target that discrimination? If so, just how did this negative treatment make you feel?

Table 1. Connecting Stereotypes, Prejudice, and DiscriminationItemFunctionConnectionExample
StereotypeCognitive; thoughts around peopleOvergeneralized beliefs about people may bring about prejudice.“Yankees fans are arrogant and obnoxious.”
PrejudiceAffective; feelings about people, both positive and negativeFeelings may influence treatment the others, leading to discrimination.“I dislike Yankees fans; they make me angry.”
DiscriminationBehavior; optimistic or an unfavorable treatment the othersHolding stereotypes and harboring prejudice may lead to excluding, avoiding, and biased therapy of group members.

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“I would never ever hire nor become friends with a human being if i knew he or she to be a Yankees fan.”

So far, we’ve questioned stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination as an unfavorable thoughts, feelings, and behaviors because these are commonly the most problematic. However, it is vital to also point out that civilization can host positive thoughts, feelings, and also behaviors toward individuals based on group membership; because that example, lock would present preferential treatment for world who are favor themselves—that is, who share the same gender, race, or favorite sports team.