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Old Saturday, August 22, 2009
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Old Friday, September 04, 2009
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It is not fulfilling all Prejudice question requirement.

I have virtual university notes, but I also follow this topic from a book.

PREJUDICE AND DISCRIMINATION

Prejudice and Discrimination:
Aims
To introduce the psychological factors that influence and drive prejudice and discrimination

Objectives
�� Compare and contrast the alternative theories of prejudice and discrimination
�� Evaluate cognitive and motivational components of inter-group bias

Inter-group intolerance
�� In English language, the pronouns we and they indicate the degree of social and psychological space
between the speaker and the social group to which these pronouns refer. People associated with “they”
pronouns usually are not like us. We state them like this, “they are disrespectful”; “they are different”;
“they are dangerous, difficult, annoying”, and so on. We sometime feel sorry for them but we don’t want
them around us. They (sometime) may be good ones, but usually they are not like us.
�� Social groups associated with the “distancing” “they” and “them” pronoun labels are valued much less
than those with the embracing “we” and “us” labels.
�� This chapter is about the social psychology of inter-group intolerances

Prejudice and discrimination
�� Prejudice is a negative attitude towards the members of specific social groups. Attitude is general type of
feeling. Prejudice is specific form of feeling.
�� Discrimination is a negative behaviour directed toward members of social groups who are the object of
prejudice.
�� Stereotypes: Beliefs about the personal attributes shared by people in a particular group or social
category.

Factors shaping prejudice & discrimination
1. Cognitive sources: Categorizing people
2. Emotional sources: Scapegoat & Authoritarian personalities
3. Social sources
�� Social inequalities: Unequal status, Religion, stereotype threat
�� Social identity
• The minimal group paradigm
• Social identity theory
�� Inter-group competition

Cognitive sources of prejudice
Categorization
�� One way we simplify structure our environment is to categorize by clustering things into groups. For
example, a biologist classifies plants and animals. In psychology, we classify people. Once categorized,
we begin to perceive people differently.
�� In multicultural societies, e.g., in USA, people of widely varying ancestry are labeled as Black and White,
on the basis of skin colour. Afro Caribbean males are often labeled as “angry black man”, and are
considered dangerous. In Pakistan, Zaat and Beradri system is the basis of categorization.
�� Ethnicity and sex are powerful ways of categorizing people. For example in many parts of UK, Pakistani
people are called as Pakies, an insulting label.
�� By itself categorization is not prejudice, but it provides a foundation for that.
�� Social identity theory implies that those who feel their social identity keenly tend to categorize people as
us or them.

Out-group Homogeneity Effect
�� Merely assigning people to different social groups can create out-group homogeneity effect, the
perception of out-group members as being more similar to one another than one’s own group.
�� “They are all alike, while we are diverse”. Our tendency to perceive out-group members as similar to one
another sets the stage for developing beliefs about their personalities, abilities, and motives” These
beliefs are called stereotypes, a type of schema.
�� In-group homogeneity effect can also arise when there are many minorities at one place and they feel
similar to each other on the basis of minority category.
�� Stereotypes are beliefs about people that put them into categories and don’t allow for individual
variation.

The function of stereotyped thinking
�� Quickness: Stereotyped thinking provides us with rich and distinctive information about people we do
not personally know (Gilbert & Hixon, 1991). Quickness is one of the most apparent qualities of
stereotyped thinking and provides basis for immediate action in uncertain circumstances. It provides
shortcuts to thinking.
�� We don’t have to get to know a person by time consuming method. However, it may result into faulty
conclusions and judgments.
�� Appears to “free-up” cognition for other tasks; this resource-preserving effect has an evolutionary basis
(Gilbert, 1989).
�� Filtering social judgments through stereotypes results in ignoring information that is relevant but
inconsistent with the stereotype.

Stereotypes against Alien Cultures: Narratives from Mental Health Professionals in UK
A research was conducted in the UK to explore how far the perceptions of mental health professionals are
derived from cultural stereotypes (Burr, 2002). Some important narratives stated by mental health
professionals during focus group discussions are as under:
Narratives about traditional feminine roles:
“I think the roles of women, the expectations, and because there is quite a lot of pressure and to conform, so
South Asian women might find themselves quite isolated”
“My concept of the Asian women is that they are very much in the dark almost on the corners”.
Here people not familiar to South-Asian countries’ culture assume that people particularly women belonging
to these cultures are more likely to be depressed because of cultural pathology.

Stereotypes: Cultural conflicts
“If they adapt to British culture, and perhaps if their Asian or ethnic values are not so rigid, then it may be
easy”
“They all try to carry on their tradition in an alien culture, so you can see how their conflict is. I am amazed
that they are not all depressed really. I think that they should all go home…. They don’t fit here”
“They are swamping the country. They are just descending to these areas. They are probably thinking that
streets are paved with gold, going to be mightily disappointed”
According to mental health professionals in the UK, the only idea to resolute conflict is that people
belonging to alien cultures adopt western culture and leave the ‘inferior rigid culture’.

Stereotypes: Arranged Marriage
“I think it will be very lonely, I didn’t realize how many people lose their own families when they go into an
arranged marriage, you know, and their husband’s family is more their family. It must be horrible”
The idea mentioned here that arranged marriage is inherently psychologically damaging is questionable.

Stereotypes: Expectations & Awareness
�� “We would be really depressed at some conditions that some cultures are faced with, but they just get on
with it”
�� “I think Asian women are socially conditioned to take all those blows. They are the ones to take the
entire heavy load. They can’t say they are depressed. Only when they come to a place like this, that’s
when we start to see symptoms”
Mental health professionals in the UK believe that South-Asian people/ women are not capable to be
depressed. Here Western therapists are ignoring the strengths of Asian cultures, while may have provided
many positive buffers against distress.

Emotional sources of prejudice

Frustration & Aggression: The scapegoat theory
�� Prejudice is viewed by some people as displaced aggression onto a group that serves as a scapegoat.
�� When the cause of our frustration is intimidating or unknown, we often direct hostility
�� The targets for this displayed anger can vary. Following their defeat in world-war I, and resulting
economic depression, many Germans saw Jews as villains. One German leader explained, “The Jew is
just convenient….if there were no Jews, the anti-Semites would have to invent them” (quoted by G.W.
Allport, 1958, p. 325)
�� When cotton prices were low and economic frustrations were high, White considered black people as an
easy scapegoat. So, there was more lynching of African Americans in the years of economic depression
after the civil war (1882- 1930 (Hoveland & Sears, 1940).
�� One source of frustration is competition (realistic group conflict theory). Goal fulfillment of one group
becomes the frustration of the other group.

Emotional sources of prejudice: Prejudice as a personality type
�� Adorno and Frenkel-Brunswick fled from Nazi Germany during world-war II and were motivated to
find out the psychology underlying the mass genocide of millions of Jews and other undesirables by
Nazi Germany. Using psychoanalytic perspective, Adorno and Frenkel-Brunswick set out to discover
how people with certain personality characteristics might be prone to inter-group hostility
�� Used interviews, case histories, surveys identified authoritarian personality
�� Authoritarian people confirm rigidly to cultural rules and values and believe that morality is a clear right
and wrong choices
�� The authoritarian personality is characterized by submissiveness to authority and intolerance for those
who are weak
�� Adorno, Frenkel-Brunswick, Levinson, & Stanford (1950) constructed The ‘F’ (Fascist) scale to measure
authoritarian personality.
�� Authoritarian personality results from personality conflicts and harsh childrearing practices

Social learning theory
�� In 1980s interest in the authoritarian personality was revived by Altemeyer when he stated that the origin
of authoritarian personality is not personality conflicts from childhood. Adolescents who socialize with
authoritarian disciplinarians develop similar tendencies by modeling and reinforcement. Altemeyer
(1981, 1988) suggested that the authoritarian personalities are caused by people learning a prejudicial
style of thinking during adolescence.

Social Inequalities: Unequal Status
This lecture will discuss that what social conditions breed prejudice? How does society maintain
prejudice?
�� Prejudice springs from several factors because it serves many functions: it may gain us social acceptance;
it may protects from anxiety; may bring us pleasure; can protect our self-esteem, etc.
�� Prejudice has been greatest in regions where slavery was practiced
�� Nineteenth century European politicians and writers justified imperial expansion by describing exploited
colonized people as “inferior”, “requiring protection” and a “burden” to be borne (Allport, 1958, pp.
204-205).

Social inequalities: Religion
�� Religious ideology is well suited to reduce prejudice. All religions stress equality and justice, particularly
Islam places a great emphasis on Heqooqul Aabad and rights of neighbours. Moreover, all prophets
have been declared equal and it has been mentioned in Al-Quran that no prophet has a preference over
others. On Hejatul widah, Prophet Mohammad presented a universal charter of human rights and clearly
stated that no one is superior on the basis of race or colour.
�� Although some religious beliefs can reduce prejudice, strong religious beliefs tend to be associated with
prejudice shown in a review of 34 studies and in a survey of 1799 people (Batson & Ventis, 1982;
Eisinga et al., 1990).
�� Although intrinsically religious prove less prejudiced on questionnaires but appear to be equally
prejudiced when measured behaviorally (Batson et al., 1978)
�� “We have just enough religion to make us hate but not enough to make us love one another”

Social inequalities: Stereotype threat
�� A self-confirming apprehension that one will be
evaluated based on a negative stereotype
�� Experiments by Spencer & Quinn (1999):
Researchers administered a difficult Math test to
men and women with different instructions.
They actually divided the test into two halves
but presented it as two distinct tests. By
employing a cross-over design, half of the
participants were told that the first test was on
which men outperformed women, while on the
second there was no gender difference.
Instructions for the second group were
reversed. The results showed the impact of
stereotype threat on performance of men and
women.

Stereotype threat & Self-fulfilling prophecy
�� Stereotype threat is different from self-fulfilling prophecy, which hammers one’s reputation into one’s
self concept, whereas stereotype threat situation is immediate. However, gender and racial stereotypes
can also be self-fulfilling.
�� Racial stereotypes be similarly self-fulfilling, e.g., when difficult verbal tests were administered to Blacks
and Whites (Steele & Aronson, 1995), Black performed poorly because they are perceived as having low
verbal ability.
�� Stereotype threat also affects athletic performance, when a golf test was framed as a test of “sports
intelligence” Blacks performed worse; when it was framed as “natural athletic ability” Blacks performed
better than Whites (Stone et al., 1999).
�� Figure 2 presents a diagrammatic illustration of stereotypes as self-fulfilling prophecy.

Social sources: Social Identity
�� Human beings are group-bound species; our ancestral history prepares us to feed and protect ourselvesto
live in groups. Human beings live for their groups, kill for their groups, and die for their groups.
�� We carry social identities-being woman, Pakistani, a psychologist, educationist, student, a member of
Rotary club, etc.
�� Any situation may involve both interpersonal and intergroup elements, but usually one will be dominant.
�� An in-group member is someone who shares category membership with the perceiver.
�� An out-group member is someone who does not share category membership with the perceiver.
�� Self-concept contains not just a personal identity but a social identity.
�� Simple act of categorizing people as in-group or out-group members affects how we evaluate and
compare them
�� In-group bias refers to the tendency to give more favorable evaluations and greater rewards to in-group
members than to out-group ones.
�� Racism and sexism are the widespread category-based prejudice and discrimination

Social Identity: Self-concept
The minimal group paradigm: (Tajfel et al.,
1971)
�� Group membership is sufficient to
foster group favouritism
�� Participants allocated to two groups on
an arbitrary basis
�� Identities of people in other groups
unknown
�� Allocate money to people (via code
numbers) in the two groups
�� Could not allocate money to self

Results
�� A persistent tendency to allocate more
points to their own group than the out group.
�� Mere categorization is sufficient to elicit intergroup bias. Minimal group categorizatization is an
independent of stereotyping and existed even though people did not know each other before this
experiment.
�� Meaningless categories; no interaction between groups; no past relationship; (i.e., even without historical,
cultural, or religious bases)
�� Has been proved as a very robust finding (Brewer, 1979)

Billig & Tajfel’s study (1973)
�� Original MGP categorization on basis of ‘liking of paintings’�� so not truly mere categorization, but
belief similarity, which can increase discrimination
�� Categorization by coin-toss (truly minimal) vs. similarity (you all liked the same paintings)
�� But...mere categorization (on completely arbitrary basis) can still lead to bias
�� Reward allocations to either ingroup or outgroup: more to ingroup
�� How to explain the mere categorization effect?
Social Identity Theory
Our self esteem is partly determined by the social esteem of our group as social identity is part of our self
definition, and we enjoy in the reflected glory of our group.

Tajfel & Turner (1979)
�� People seek to enhance their self esteem by identifying with specific social groups and perceiving these
groups as being better than others.
�� We indulge in ingroup biases when the social esteem of our ingroup is threatened; strength of
identification indicates levels of bias

Intergroup Competition: Realistic Group Conflict Theory
�� Intergroup conflict develops due to competition for scarce resources (Levine & Campbell, 1972).
�� Two important changes occur in conflict:
1) Increased hostility toward the opposing out-group
2) An intensification of in-group loyalty (ethnocentrism)

Sherif et al.’s summer camp (robber’s cave) experiments (1955)
What happens if you randomly place people into one of two groups and manipulate circumstances to
promote intergroup competition? The central theme of minimal group categorization surrounds a classic
study. Sherif et al. conducted study at a specially created 200-acre camp at Robber’s Cave State Park, 150
miles southeast of Oklahoma City of USA.
�� Boy’s summer camp in U.S.
�� 20 well-adjusted, 11-12 years old boys
�� Divided into two groups
�� Unobtrusive observations by campus counsellors.
Three phases:
1) Creating ingroups
2) Instilling intergroup competitions
3) Encouraging intergroup cooperation

Phase I: Creating in-groups
�� Cooperative activities: By making meals, hiking, hunting for hidden treasures, pitching tents, etc.
�� Developed unique identity (Rattlers & Eagles): Rattlers established a tough-guy group norm and spent a
great deal of time in cursing and swearing.
�� Started making clear and undeniable ingroup-outgroup statements

Phase II: Intergroup competitions
Hypothesis: “Intergroup competition would cause prejudice”
�� Weeklong tournament consisting on 10 athletic events
�� Each event winner received points and the group with most points would receive highly prized medals
and impressive 4-bladed pocketknives.
�� Showed how easily hostility can be developed between groups who are brought in competition.
�� Eagles were losing, so they angrily burned Rattlers’ flag; Rattlers raided Eagles’ camps and ripped their
mosquito nets, overturned their cots; next day Eagles returned the attack.
�� Intergroup conflicts transformed these normal, well adjusted boys into “wicked, disturbed, and vicious”
youngsters” (Sherif, 1966, p. 58).
�� Dramatic increase in derogation of the other group (pig, stinkers, sneaky, cheater) vs. different words for
ingroup members (brave, tough, friendly, etc.)
�� One by-product of intergroup hostility was an increase in in-group solidarity
�� Intergroup hostility escalated from name calling to acts of physical aggression

Phase III: Reversing the hostility
�� Researchers sought to determine whether simple noncompetitive contact between the groups would
ease tensions, so they brought children together for meals and movie.
�� Both groups used each interaction as an opportunity to merely increase their animosity

Conflict reduction: Super ordinate goals
An excellent example of how ethnocentrism can develop when 2 groups compete for scarce resources:
�� Bus breakdown - at lunchtime
�� Only together could the two groups push-start the truck
�� Decrease in out-group derogation
�� But.can merely being a member of a certain group promotes intergroup bias?
�� Recent studies show that mere perception of conflict is often sufficient to fuel intolerance (Zarate et al.,
2004); Realistic group conflict theory


Source virtual university.
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