Intolerance of Others

stereotyping ----> prejudice ----> discrimination

Thoughts ----->negative attitudes -----> behavior

Stereotyping: developing an association between the behavior of a single person and generalizing to an entire group of people who share some obvious dimension with that individual (gender, race, national origin, language, occupation, sexual orientation )

Stereotype : A belief about the personal attributes of a group of people based on singular experiences or passive adoption of other peoples attitudes.

Stereotypes are typically inaccurate over generalizations which are highly resistant to change

Stereotypical responses are often so automatic that their existence can be detected by simple response measures like the Implicit Association Task. (Greenwald 1991)

Prejudice : an unjustifiable negative attitude toward a group and its individual members based on stereotypes. These negative attitudes stem from emotional associations, negative beliefs, and the need to justify behavior. Prejudice is often reflected in speech.

Discrimination: Unjustifiable negative behavior toward a group or its members.

Without doubt the two most common forms of discrimination within America are

Racism : Both an individuals prejudicial attitudes and discriminatory behavior toward people based on racial distinctions and institutional practices that discriminate against people of a particular race.

Sexism: Both an individuals prejudicial attitudes and discriminatory behavior toward people of a given sex and institutional practices that discriminate against people of a particular sex.

Historically, racism and sexism in America has strongly influenced:

Economic and Educational Opportunities

Where one could live

Whom one could socialize with

Voting rights and political expression

Although obvious forms of discrimination have decreased over the last fifty years, subtle forms of prejudice and discrimination still exist.






Public sentiment and private behavior often conflict.

For example, Rogers & Prentice-Dunn (1981) had students in a behavior-modification experiment shock a confederate of the experimenter. The confederate was either Caucasian or African-American, and either acted pleasantly toward the subject or insulted them. The subjects in the experiment were all Caucasians.

When the confederate insulted the subject prior to the experiment, they "shocked" African-American confederates at a higher level than Caucasian confederated.

When the African-American confederate was not insulting, they were less aggressive toward them than a white confederate.


Ayres (1991) : Had males and females visit 90 car dealerships in Chicago and negotiate a price for a new car. The dealers cost was approximately $11,000.

Average cost negotiated:

Caucasian Males $11,362 + $ 362

Caucasian Females $11,504 + $ 504

African American Males $11,783 + $ 783

African American Females $12,237 + $ 1,237

The Roots of Prejudice

Social Sources of Prejudice:

Unequal status breeds prejudice: prejudices are traditionally used to maintain the status quo

Social Conflict (Wars & Economic Hardship) can breed prejudice. (Scapegoating)



The impact of Discrimination: A Self-fulfilling prophecy

Allport (1958) in his book, The Nature of Prejudice, identified two major responses of people who are victimized by discrimination:

1. They can blame external causes (hatred and racial intolerance) and promote self and group image.

2. They can blame themselves and their own group (internalizing the prejudice attitudes)







Word, Zunna, & Cooper (1974) experimented how self-fulfilling prophecy can contribute to discrimination.

Caucasian Princeton males interviewed African-American and Caucasian applicants for a job:

When the job applicant was African-American:

Interviewers sat farther away (greater social distance)

Ended the interview 25% sooner (less social chit-chat)

Made 50% more speech errors (indicating nervousness)

Next, they trained other confederates to act similarly in job interviews with prospective Caucasian employees.

Those interviewed by these "specially trained" confederates reported that they felt the interview went poorly, and rated their chance of getting the job as being low.

Ingroup and Outgroup Effects

We are prone to like people who are similar to ourselves.


Ingroup : "US" Outgroup: "Them"





When a prejudice becomes established as a cultural norm, it takes a great amount of energy to dislodge it.

Both womenís fight for suffrage and the Civil Rights movement demonstrates how the status quo can only be changed by large scale involvement of a sizeable portion of the population.

The fight to eradicate racism and sexism is a long term struggle.


Emotional Sources of Prejudice

Frustration and Aggression: Scapegoating

Miller & Bugeleski: Measured menís attitudes toward different racial groups. Men who had their attitudes measured after completing some grueling tests which interfered with their plans to attend the movies showed greater racial hostility than men who got to attend the movie.

Realistic Group Conflict Theory: States prejudice arises when different groups compete for the same resources.






Personality Dynamics which contribute to prejudice

Prejudice is the reward of a lazy thinker.

Need for Status: By putting others down, we boost our own ego.

Ethnocentrism: A belief in the superiority of oneís own ethnic and cultural group , and a disdain for all other groups.

Authoritarian tendencies have been associated with prejudice:

an intolerance for weakness, a punitive attitude, submissive respect for authority, and people who were harshly disciplined as children.

Different forms of prejudice seem to coexist within people.


Cognitive Sources of Prejudice

Categorization: The need to create order out of an unpredictable universe leads to the development of stereotypes. In other words, we want to group experiences we see as having common factors, otherwise we would never be able to generate expectations about what we thought was going to happen.

We often generalize from individual instances.

Fundamental Attribution Error: Because Race and Sex are obvious personal characteristics, we mistakenly attribute behavior to racial and gender factors.


Cultural Group Stereotype Prejudice Discriminatory practice

African-Americans Excel at Sports Undervalued in Inadequate funding

& music other career areas of schools

Native Americans Spiritually