Presentation on theme: "Stereotyping and Prejudice. Some initial thoughts It would be nice if human beings never used stereotypes or prejudice It would be nice if social psychologists."— Presentation transcript:
Some initial thoughts It would be nice if human beings never used stereotypes or prejudice It would be nice if social psychologists could figure out a way of reducing or even eliminating stereotypic/prejudicial behavior It would be nice if we could educate the public about the falsehoods and perniciousness of prejudice
Why I am a pessimist People don’t stereotype (only) because they are stupid; they sometimes have much to gain Power (cf. System legitimization approaches (e.g., Jost, Fitzsimons, & Kay (2004). Stereotypic beliefs often implicit: hard to control, often unconscious (implicit), despite our best intentions Stereotypes are often (although not always) linked to very salient visual cues that are difficult to overlook Ironic effects of stereotype suppression attempts Exceptions are often subcategorized, leaving the original category-based beliefs unchanged. Evidence for stereotype change in the laboratory may or may not be long-lasting. (rubber band metaphor). Well-meaning “consciousness raising” programs to curb prejudice are often “preaching to the choir”.
Stereotyping: inappropriate bias, or rational thinking? Are there cases in which that “it’s ok” to use stereotypes?
Crandall (1999): Subjective appropriateness of stereotyping Rating scale: 0 = NOT OK to feel negatively toward these people 1 = MAYBE OK to feel…. 2 = OK to feel…..
1. Blind people (.047) 2. Deaf people(.053) 3. Mentally retarded people (.053) 4. Members of a bowling league (.113) 5. Black Americans (.12O) 6. Jews (.120) 7. Hispanics (.141) 8. Asian Americans (.147) 9. Canadians (.148) 10. Ugly People (.193) 11. Cat owners (.220) 12. High School cheerleaders (.227) 13. People with AIDS (.227) 14. Fat People (.228) 15. Rap music fans (.275) 16.Traveling salesmen (.313) 17. Hare Krishnas (.407) 18. People who like country music (.430) 19. Lawyers (.460) 20. Gay soldiers (.520) 21. People who call the “Psychic Hotline” (.560) 22. Welfare Recipients (.620)
23. Feminists (.733) 24. Gamblers (.733) 25. People who go to Kansas State University (.653) 26. People who smell bad (.764) 27. Porn stars (.967) 28. Ex-convicts (.980) 29. People who cut in line (1.14) 30. People who litter (1.18) 31. Female prostitutes (1.24) 32. People who cheat on exams (1.25) 33. People who cheat on their spouses (1.64) 34. Drunk drivers (1.82) 32. Wife beaters (1.93) 33. Rapists (1.97) What’s determining this rank ordering?
Big caveat Just because people say it’s inappropriate to dislike people on the basis of their membership in certain categories, doesn’t mean they’re not actually doing this all of the time. Important factor: Activation and use of stereotypes/ prejudice is often at the implicit (unaware) level So in terms of predicting behavior, these explicit appropriateness ratings could have limited validity
The “categorization” approach to stereotyping “least effort principle”“least effort principle” “cognitive miser” view“cognitive miser” view
“The human mind must think with the aid of categories….once formed, categories are the basis for normal prejudgment. We cannot possibly avoid this process. Orderly living depends on it.” The Nature of Prejudice (Allport, 1954) “The human mind must think with the aid of categories….once formed, categories are the basis for normal prejudgment. We cannot possibly avoid this process. Orderly living depends on it.”
This perspective suggests that stereotyping may be… “natural” (or at least not completely unnatural) not necessarily dysfunctional or even immoral But validity is the bottom line
Some modern implicit tests, especially the IAT (Greenwald et al. 1995) rely heavily on the logic of the Stroop task.
Extension to stereotyping and prejudice hostile
pleasant words e.g., birthday unpleasant words e.g., hatred “White names” e.g. Kristina “Black names” e.g. Latonya 1. Pleasant (l) vs. unpleasant (r) 2. White (l) vs. Black (r) 3. Pleasant or White (l) vs. Unpleasant or Black (r) 4. Unpleasant (l) vs. pleasant (r) 5. Unpleasant or White (l) vs. pleasant or Black (r) C I IAT SCORE = I- C
birthday Pleasant or White Unpleasant or Black CONGRUENT TRIALS birthday Pleasant or Black Unpleasant or White INCONGRUENT TRIALS FastSlow
Current issues/controversies Relationship to explicit measures? – Often low or non-existent Two views of the IAT – “endorsement” model – environmental association model Malleability? Responses by minority participants?
Ingroup favoritism effect: IG > OG But WHY? – Resource competition? – Historical events? – Rewards for self? Commonality of effect suggests basic need
"Because people typically want to maintain positive self- regard, they are motivated to have favorable evaluations of the groups to which they belong. But there is no objective yardstick for gauging the desirability of any particular social group: such comparisons are inherently subjective. Therefore, people enhance their own group's favorability by psychologically establishing its relative superiority in comparison with some out-group. Thus, people are motivated to accentuate the evaluative difference between the ingroup and outgroup." (Hamilton and Sherman, 1994)
Henri Tajfel’s classic insight: mere categorization may be sufficient Mere, “arbitrary” categorization Division into IG and OG Drive for self-esteem, resulting in… IGF Referred to as “minimal group” paradigm
“minimal group” paradigm Similarity to heuristics (cognitive efficiency) view: – commonality of prejudice – “naturalness” – avoids “bad person” perspective – reductionist view Dissimilarity – more motivational – Emphasizes own membership (ingroup/outgroup) – Reflects “European” perspective Inter-personal/group dynamics
Historical perspective search for “minimal” conditions needed to produce IGF "Eye of the storm” formal evidence? Social categorization theory (Henri Tajfel)
Experimental Evidence Oakes and Turner (1980) Minimal group manipulation Klee vs. Kadinsky Point allocation (direct self interest held constant) Control participants: filler task Results: IGF Higher self esteem, but ONLY after “biasing” process of point allocation
Howard & Rothbart (1980) Minimal group manipulation – Under vs. over-estimators Results: – Phase I: direct trait ratings – Phase II: memory task Ingroup: superior recall for positive Outgroup: reverse Fairly subtle test