Presentation on theme: "Quick Review of Terms Stereotypes are usually false generalizations: assumption that people of shared religious, ethnic, cultural, or other characteristics."— Presentation transcript:
Quick Review of Terms Stereotypes are usually false generalizations: assumption that people of shared religious, ethnic, cultural, or other characteristics are the same (All aboriginals are alcoholics) Prejudice is a belief: often based on stereotypes – it divides groups into categories of inferiority and superiority (anti-Semitism) Discrimination acting on your prejudice (a young black man getting turned down a promotion in favour a white man)
Unlearning & Ending Prejudice 1.Psychological & Sociological Theories 2.Educational Strategies 3.What we can do NOW
Cognitive Dissonance The theory was developed by psychologist Leon Festinger in 1957. The most favoured theory of belief and behavioural change. Definition: People try to avoid conflicts between what they think and what they do.
Cognitive Dissonance Example: Sam Smith is out with his friends at the mall. They see two men walking together holding hands. Sam’s friends yell out at the men, “Fags!”. Sam then follows suit. However, Sam was taking the HSB 4M0 course in high school and was learning about prejudice & discrimination in class. He was starting to understand that it is wrong to judge other people based on their differences. Yet, he still committed an act of Hate speech.
Cognitive Dissonance However, this act made Sam very uncomfortable/upset and he may try to avoid conflict. He may stop attending his HSB course thereby avoiding the lecture on prejudice & discrimination In this case, Sam is experiencing dissonance – his action/behaviour conflicted with a belief. What can Sam do to resolve this dissonance?
Cognitive Dissonance to Cognitive Consistency Sam can resolve this conflict by changing his behaviour. Not make hurtful comments, attend class to learn more about prejudice and discrimination, … Once Sam does this, he will reach “cognitive consistency”, the state in which are are beliefs are “in sync” with our behaviours and we lead a more happy and satisfied life.
Inter-group Cooperation Term coined by sociologists M. Sherif and L.J. Harvey Conducted a study known as the “Robber’s Cave” to determine if prejudice can be unlearned.
Robber’s Cave – Part I 2 groups of 11 yr old white middle class boys were segregated at a camp They conducted all activities such as swimming, hiking, canoeing, within their own groups Then the groups were brought together to have athletic competitions What was the result?
The Robber’s Cave The 2 groups immediately disliked each other. Escalation: fighting occurred on and off the athletic field, cabin-break-ins, vandalism, and theft
The Robber’s Cave – Part II The researchers tested whether they could get the boys to unlearn the prejudice that has been created. They created a number of emergency situations and then assigned cooperative inter-group teams to solve them. Result: The boys from both teams had formed many inter-group friendship – they unlearned their previous prejudice. Problems with this study?
Educational Strategies In keeping with the Robber’s Cave experiment, social psychologist Elliot Aronson identified similar tensions in classrooms. Classrooms were competitive environments in which students were struggling with one another for a chance to gain recognition
Jigsaw Cooperative Learning Aronson decided that learning would need to be restructured in a more cooperative way, based on mixed teams made up of different ethnic groups. He believed that this would help eliminate prejudice by maximizing student equality
Jigsaw Cooperative Learning Each member of a team becomes an “expert” on a different section of a particular topic. Each group of students must then cooperate as a team to learn the whole topic. He found that within 8 weeks, prejudice was reduced.
Discussion about Prejudice Aboud, Tatum, and Allport all agreed that children at the age of four, should be taught about prejudice and discrimination. Why? According to Piaget’s theory of cognitive childhood development, this is the age when children become aware of ethnic differences
What can we do NOW? refuse to laugh at racist or sexist jokes refuse to see movies, read books, play video games or participate in actives that promote violence or discrimination against certain groups confront your friends or peers who express prejudiced or discriminatory beliefs confront prejudice in schools by working with a diverse group of people
Most Importantly Self-reflect, realise, and understand your own biases and prejudices – we all have them! EDUCATE!!
Helpful Resources Pamphlet entitled, “101 Ways To Combat Prejudice”. Available for download at: www.adl./org/prejudice/closethebook.pdf www.adl./org/prejudice/closethebook.pdf Kids Help Phone: www.kidshelpphone.ca