Free Essay: The Psychology of Prejudice, Stereotyping and Discrimination
One just needs to keenly listen to the speech by the former world’s most wanted and intimidating terrorist, the deceased Osama Bin Laden when he said “The killing of Americans, their civilian and military allies is a religious duty for each and every Muslim…” to fully appreciate the international existence of discrimination, stereotyping and prejudice. Presently, these psychological interdisciplinary feelings and actions continue to disrupt the world at varying levels. Such beliefs of negativism have continued to infest the world with threatening rationales of gender inequality, social disparity, and supremacy (Plous, 2005, p. 2). This essay will tackle The Psychology of Prejudice, Stereotyping, and Discrimination.
Numerous experimental researchers prove prejudice is an unfavorable and preoccupied judgment directed towards a specific group or individual. The initial research that was carried out in the occurrence in the 1920s proves that there exists hierarchical supremacy. The theorist made the discovery that prejudice originates from authoritarian individuals segmenting the society on the basis of hierarchical as well as abnormal judgment. In his 1979 analysis, Thomas clearly defined negative attributes on the experience of the global out-group (Plous, 2005, p. 3).
Research indicates French printer, Didiot on his mission of printing portrayed stereotype as some kind of reproduction. Later, journalist Walter Lipmann in 1922 argued stereotypes is related to real mental human reproduction and psychologists later modified the term to refer to generalization (Plous, 2005, p. 4). Currently, the term continued to be used across the board and it can either have a positive or negative influence on humanity. In most cases, the term causes resistance to change while promoting negative factors like discrimination and prejudice (Plous, 2005, p. 5).
Studies also indicate that despite the continued prevalence of various kinds of discrimination most of the nations in the world have directed their efforts towards eradication of the same. For example, most countries have put into place policies publicly confirming the need for equality in all sectors. As several documented study reviews indicate, discrimination has a negative impact on the development of diverse sectors in the nation. This barrier often is felt on basis of race, social class, and nationality. Imminent efforts that are aimed at the elimination of its occurrence have been excluded by people’s inability to detect such occurrences at individual levels (Plous, 2005, p. 5).
A close example of the phenomena described above is the categorization of an individual in-group versus an out-group psychology context. The in-group refers to the individual that belongs to a specific class while the out-group is the class of outsiders in a group. The homogeneity of the out-group has been found to bar individuals from taking part in various social circumstances as a result of disparity in values, personality traits as well as attitudes. As such, stereotyping of the out-group always leads to exposition of discrimination risk and it is expandable in the societal context (Plous, 2005, p. 7).
The social, cognitive and Societal Origins of Prejudice and Stereotypes
In his study, Tijfel hypothesized the origins of tendencies like stereotypes and prejudice in various social contests in order to promote self-esteem. In his test laboratory study, he made the discovery that the self-esteem of an individual can be threatened without prejudice of them belonging to an in-group within the society. Psychologically, in a social context, prejudice of being part of a particular group explores positive influence on the behavior of members of both the out-group and in-group. For example, individuals’ part of the class of the out-group like single mothers might portray characters that are uncharitable and behaviors that are a result of discrimination (Plous, 2005, p. 12).
Studies by psychologists reveal stereotyping, for years have been looked upon as a common and natural norm in societal settings. The phenomenon of stereotyping and the influence it has on societal and cognitive development originates from Daniel Katz in 1933. In his study, he dispels various superstitions and also elaborates stereotyping has an influence that is powerful on social and behavior perception. He also expresses negative and positive stimuli’s on individual presentation of stereotype that might undermine or activate performance (Plous, 2005, p. 15).
The Influences that Promote stereotyping, Prejudice and Discrimination and How to Eliminate Them
The Implicit Association Test reveals there are several factors that are hidden which promote gender preferences, stereotypes as well as attitudes. These factors are inclusive of publicity on social media, retrogressive cultural attitudes, and beliefs. Most of the time, the content on advertisements, TV programs and movies is saturated with increased individual attitudes to stereotype, discrimination and prejudice. Social roles preoccupy the mindsets of people with varying roles of gender-based social class and race (Plous, 2005, p. 15).
In order to eliminate negative influences known to promote prejudice, stereotype and discrimination in an effective manner, nations are supposed to set up effective policies and laws that encourage fair treatment of individuals (Plous, 2005, p. 23). It is the mandate of all involved to promote accepted social norms in varying situations within the society. According to global campaign analysis, it has been proven that it is crucial to eliminate negative implications of stereotypes, discrimination and prejudice. In order for everyone to pursue these goals, it is important to ensure that in the social arena, there is equality.
Plous, S. (2005). The Physcology of Predudice, Stereotyping, and Descrimination: an Overview. Wesleyan University Press. Pp. 1-25