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Essay on Prejudice

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❶The importance of studies on prejudice in India has been realised specially after when the Hindu Muslim conflict became a matter of grave concern for the sociologists and psychologist.

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This theory researches individuals that are described by a tendency to share other people into categories. They also have an inclination to submit an authority, be very intolerant to ambiguity, rigidly conform and be inclined of superstition. The people belonging to this category have a tendency more often stereotype and rigidly characterize the members of minority groups.

Virtually, the Authorization Theory directly relates with high religious orthodoxy and extreme political conservatism. Sociological theories of prejudice are currently explaining appearance of prejudice and varieties of its forms. These theories examine particularly the institutional racism. Three types of theories present the sociological approach of prejudice investigation. To begin with functionalist theory, which argues that ethnic and race relations are functional to society, these relations contribute to stability and harmonious relations among members of different groups of society.

Functionalist Theory insists that minorities must assimilate into the definite society. Assimilation means economical, cultural and social absorption within the dominant society.

The Symbolic Interaction Theory describes two main issues. It shows social and ethnic interaction in reducing hostility and construction of these events in the definite society. Symbolic Interaction Theory is looking for the answer per question about interaction between two adherents of different social groups and how it can reduce hostility and solve the racial conflicts. The fundamental part of Conflict Theory is class — based conflicts.

The Conflict theorists identify that racial and ethnic conflicts are tied to class conflicts and might be solved by reducing a class inequality. The above theories are discovering prejudice, the reasons of its existence and ways to solve the interaction conflicts. However, what is the real reason, why does a prejudice appear? Great part in this process plays social leaning.

There exists the Motivational Theory that makes people to deal with bias. Those people who are going to achieve success obtain negative thoughts about competitors. This prompts people to generalize that thought about all members of the group presented by competitor. People often develop prejudice because of experience they have during their development. For example, a person reared by the bald-headed man, who used to punishment may develop bias against all bald-headed men.

The cognitive dissonance is another reason, why people have prejudice. It means that people have different thoughts, beliefs, or attitudes, especially relating to attitude changes and behavioral decisions.

Therefore, people conceptualize their world using some mental shortcuts to organize it, e. Prejudice might be eliminated in several ways. The first way is an acquainting prejudiced people with the members of minority groups they are prejudiced against, and teach them to think rationally and make conclusions from their own experience not from whose words.

The Contact Theory tells that interaction between Whites and representative members of minorities might reduce the prejudice in both groups. It is possible to get this goal, if only three conditions are met. The contact should be between individuals of equal status on an equal ground. The interaction should be sustained. The short conversation cannot decrease the prejudice. Daily contact of two individuals, who are belonging to different ethnic or social groups, will destroy the prejudice.

The other condition of beneficial destroying the prejudice is equally agreed social norms by participants. This essay presents to reader different types of stereotypes as a popular belief about specific features of people that belong to specific social group. On the basis of stereotypes, there appear prejudices, discrimination and racism.

There is some chain about these phenomena. The prejudice is an attitude, the discrimination is an action, and racism is a directed negative treatment for racial or ethnic groups. Consequently, racism includes either attitude or behavior. Religious, racial, political or other prejudices make a ground for international misunderstanding. That is why they lead people to misunderstanding and racial wars.

Therefore, it is very important to know how to avoid and prevent stereotype creation. Nov 8, in Sociology. Introspecting Nature versus Nurture Debate. Thank you for your care of my essay writing assignment. I have received a wonderful paper. First off, I would like to quote Ayn Rand on racism: Which means, in practice, that a man is to be judged, not by his own character and actions, but by the characters and actions of a collective of ancestors.

Prejudice can have a wide range of implications on the person to whom it is directed at. An example of this would be a black person who grows up in an all white community. This kid could always feel alone, because his black friends disown him for acting white, and his white friends are subconsciously prejudice against him simply because he is black.

This is a tough situation, and is extremely true in the lives of a lot of kids especially in inner-cities. You can see this at Buckingham; the majority of black kids are caught up in the whole hip-hop culture.

I kind of hit a rabbit trail there, but you can understand: The person displaying the prejudice shows the ignorance of that person. Most kids get their prejudice roots from their parents at a very young age; it can come from a ton of different situations where the parent makes a comment, joke, etc, about a certain group. It also can come from the environment, in which the child grows up, and different situations that the child is involved in or witnesses.

That being said, it is not an excuse for the person to be racist against the entire group, be it ethnic, social, or any other grouping. So, when someone judges another according to the group that they are associated with, this is completely erroneous, and it shows that the judger is basing his evaluation of that person off a general consensus.

This is basing your judgment off of a collective: We live in a semifree capitalist society today. As stated in the Constitution, every American has these rights: There is a huge philosophical discussion that I could go into about that statement alone, but I will refrain.

Those rights are all that we need as free citizens in a government that has limitations the Bill of Rights. There are a few things that could be done to lessen prejudice in America today. One of the first things I would suggest we do is to teach all the youth to never judge someone based on the group they are associated with, but to only judge them based on their productive ability. This would have a domino effect: This would, in turn, generate smarter kids from the educational system: Horowitz and Horowitz interviewed a few white children in a Southern Community and noted that many children said that they were punished and penalised by their parents and relatives for not dissociating themselves from the Negro children.

Actual conflict between the ingroup and outgroup infinitely adds more effectively to the intensification of prejudice. Once a superior group starts a prejudice, scientists, philosophers and politicians come to justify it. Hitler created the prejudice that Germans can rule the world. Thus, prejudice develops in the same way as attitudes and stereotypes grow in the minds of a person due to social influence.

Growth of prejudice mostly depends upon the family members, societies, tradition, customs, myths, legends, stories, faiths and beliefs. It further grows with the growth of social distance because of the development of attitude and prejudices.

If the social distance is high, prejudice is more and vice versa. There is always prejudice of the Americans towards the Turkians, Indians towards Americans, though not one American in a thousand knows anything about the Turki. This is because of the historical conflicts between the Mahamadians and the Christianity. A study based on interviews with persons released from a cross section of the American Zone showed that women are significantly more biased against the Jews than men.

Small town people, uneducated people are found to be more prejudiced than those of large cities and educated people. Prejudice is found to be greater among people with low status in society. Many studies indicate high levels of racism among lower class whites who may feel that blacks will take away their jobs.

One of the basic reasons behind the development of prejudice is stereotype. The conditions and expectations assigned to members of group simply on the basis of the membership in those groups lead to prejudice.

Stereotypes are over simplification of facts which are used to add meaning to certain facts out of a complex social environment. In the process, the important differences that distinguish one person from another is lost sight of. Today, the pressure is more on social and economic stereotypes in the development of prejudice. Smeelley and Bayton found that beliefs about social class provided more powerful stereotypes than did beliefs about race.

Similarly, sex stereotypes lead to sex prejudices. Some emphasise the role of self fulfilling prophecy to the development of prejudice.

It means expectations about the possibility of further events or behaviours that act to increase the likelihood that the event or behaviour will occur. If people assume that members of a certain group are lazy, they may act in a way that actually elicits laziness on the part of the members of that group.

Cultural factors play a very important role in the development of prejudice. Sociologists and anthropologists have emphasised the tremendous impact of socio-cultural factors in the growth and development of prejudice and discrimination. Increasing urbanization and population complexity of the society, competition and rivalry among different ethnic groups help in the development of prejudice of one group towards the other.

When certain minority or disadvantaged groups are provided with the advantage of reservation in admission to educational institution; in jobs and in various elections to political system, the unreserved category develop prejudice towards these groups. Social factors, such as these would ultimately increase prejudices on the part of the people who feel that they are being denied a resource that is rightfully theirs or they are being debarred from their due which is rightfully theirs.

People also develop prejudice to have self regard and conformity. Many of the beliefs and attitudes occur to satisfy the specific needs of an individual. The environment also contributes a lot to the development of prejudice. When poor and uneducated people remain in small, dirty, clumsy cottages, rich and educated people develop stronger prejudice towards them. The prejudiced person lives in an environment which provides a lot of support for the development of prejudice. Through the operation of the principles of similarity and proximity, certain sociological cues develop which serve as environmental support for the development of prejudice through beliefs and attitudes.

Prejudice exists in all, it is an universal phenomena and seems to persist in all societies, though, recorded history from age to age. The question now arises how so many people develop this particularly towards people belonging to specific social groups and the outgroups. Factors contributing to the growth and development of prejudice have been extensively investigated in India as well as abroad.

Studies on prejudice have been made on the sociological, cultural, psychological determinants of prejudice. Socio-economic status usually show a positive correlation with antisemitism. But the relationship between socio-economic status and prejudice against blacks is not significant. The most common finding is that individuals of low socio economic status are most likely to have unfavourable attitudes towards blacks. On a follow up study-Gilbreth found that Princeton students checked many of the same traits for national groups in that Katz and Barely measured in Hartley has found the same pattern of social distance in that Bogardus had found in The findings that there were more anti Negro prejudice in the South than in the North car be explained interms of differential impact of cultural norm.

From three major psychological theories of prejudice, such as frustration, aggression, authoritarian, personality and belief congruence the effect of personality variable on prejudice is obvious. Furthermore, this psychodynamic approach holds that prejudiced individuals are more susceptible to frustration.

The free floating hostility which cannot be expressed directly due to social restrictions is vented at an alternate target. The minority group in many cases becomes the likely scapegoat as it is probably less powerful than the original source which created frustration by blocking the satisfaction of a desire. A person who feels secured about his job, position and status in the family or society takes an objective view of the situation that he comes across.

But a person with feelings of insecurity tries to find out an individual upon whom he can put the blame of his insecurity. Allport and Gough a, b, c have reported that persons with high level of insecurity arc likely to show higher level of prejudice. Many investigators, including Rokuch , Siegat , point out that more anxious individuals display higher levels of prejudice than less anxious subjects.

Frenkel and Brunswik found that children high in prejudice tended to be intolerant of ambiguity and dichotomous in their thinking about sex roles.

Because of the ambiguity of the subject or issue, people perceive them as they are asked to perceive. So, they develop prejudice towards such objects. Thus, the very perceptual processes create these environmental supports.

Ambiguity of physical traits, behaviour traits and as a result the distorting perceptions, has substantial effect on the development of prejudice. Rokeach attempted to explain, prejudice on the basis of individual difference in the ways of organising belief and disbelief system. Persons with high level of prejudice belief and disbelief systems are rigidly organised whereas in other individuals the systems are relatively flexible.

According to Freud, man is born with aggressive and destructive tendencies and the desire for war is quite unconscious. Human beings can live together peacefully only when this innate destructiveness is turned inward.

Glover, a psycho pathologist says that unconsciously motivated sadism, machosism may indeed be the essential cause of world tension. Studies by the UNESCO on social tension have been done on a large scale to determine the causes and remedies of social tension.

The book Authoritarian Personality suggests that prejudice is a result of a particular set of characters shared by authoritarian personality. Authoritarians displace their hostility towards weak or unconventional groups i. But, further studies also show that people who score low on the authoritarian scale may be very prejudiced. Personality factors, like rigidity, superstitionsness, intolerance, lack of liberality and dynamicity are responsible for more prejudice. Prejudice on the whole is caused and determined by the interaction of the socio-cultural Factors with the personality traits.

Prejudice is caused due to struggle and unhealthy competition over jobs, good school, housing and living facilities, high status in the society, money, social prestige, desire for power and recognition. During competition, they come to perceive each other in various negative ways. They consider each other as enemies, they think their own group as totally right and their opponents as totally wrong.

Initially which started as a simple competition gradually grows to strong prejudice. Several studies have provided evidence to this view. The study of Blake and Mouton on corporate executives and Sherifs several studies in this regard are notable.

People usually divide the social group in which they live into two clear categories i. Clearly differentiated contrasting feelings and beliefs are generally marked in the minds of the members of the ingroup towards the outgroup and vice versa.

Tajfal and Turner support the above facts. The subjects in the above studies, by and large, indicated more negative attitudes towards members of outgroups and treated them in less favourable ways than members of their own ingroups. What is an ingroup? Persons try to elevate their self esteem by becoming identified with specific social groups. They perceive these groups superior and better than other competing and rival groups.

Since, all individuals in a society are subject to this, everyone is bound to develop some prejudice. Thus, prejudice arises out of the clash or conflict of social perception. Prejudice grows due to social learning in the same process, like attitude and stereotypes.

Children acquire negative attitudes and various prejudice towards specific groups, institutions and stimuli as they are exposed to such views by parents, teachers, playmates, friends, and relations or because they are specifically rewarded for adopting them.

A negative attitude automatically develops towards those people shown in dirty dress, unclean dialapated cottages, growing in poverty and illiteracy, uttering faulty languages. Recent studies of Liebert-Sparkin and Davidson and Bandura reveal the strong influence of mass media and T. The key process of social cognition refers to the fundamental ways in which one thinks about other persons.

Among them stereotypes, illusory correlation and the illusion of outgroup homogeneity are noteworthy. For interpreting and processing social information, stereotypes function as a negative schemata and cognitive framework. The negative earlier knowledge and belief of specific social groups strongly affect the way in which one deals with further informations.

For example, Dovidio, Evans and Tyler have found that informations relevant to a particular stereotype is accepted and processed more quickly than informations not related to that stereotype. You have heard and believed a particular nation is war minded. When you get an information supporting this belief you immediately believe and accept this and act upon it within no time.

But when you get an information contrary to your already existing stereotype notion, you may not accept it, process it and act upon it. Similarly stereotypes lead a person to pay attention to specific type of information or the input that is consistent with the existing stereotypes. Even we remember those informations and inputs which suit our purpose and are consistent with our stereotypes and forget those which do not tally with it. The rest he prefers to forget. Operation of such negative schemata has got support from the recent studies of Dovidio, Evans and Tyler , Greenberg and Psyzoyaski Illusiory correlations which appear to play some role in the growth of prejudices and stereotypes as found by Spears, Vander Plight and Eiser develop due to the basic tendency to give more attention to unusual and distinctive events.

It refers to perceiving the relationship between factors or variables that actually do not exist and obviously this perception of not existent things cause prejudice. The tendency to perceive all the members of the outgroup as all very much alike and homogenous reflects a fundamental bias in the way we think about other and so prejudice is grown because of this even if there is lot of contact.

Park and Rothbart have observed that even males perceive all women having similar qualities and attitudes and females perceive all men having homogenous qualities and attitudes though, these two sex groups always come in intimate contact with each other.

These factors explain the causes and determinants of prejudice and also hint as to why prejudice inspite of all efforts persists. Some psychologists have attempted to trace the causes of prejudice from motivational and personality aspects through the frustration, aggression or scapegoat theory.

It is said that those people who experience continuous free floating aggression are likely to develop more prejudice. Accumulated tensions arising out of frustration of various basic and particularly significant needs often find expression in aggressive acts. When this aggression is directed against a group as the target, it turns to prejudice.

Miller and Bugelski have demonstrated that the frustration of even relatively unimportant needs like seeing a movie in a theatre lead to racial antipathy. The history of growing up and being in an adult modern society is a history of constant and continuous frustration. Every human being is subjected to constant frustration from the moment of birth till death and birth itself is said to be the greatest frustration in human life. When people find themselves frustrated in some way, they may turn their hostility towards a socially acceptable substitute i.

Competition between groups and the very fact that members of another group are different, may also cause prejudice. Most social psychologists hold the view that all the racial prejudice can be attributed to the frustration aggression sequence which reflects the motivational causes of all prejudice.

But, since, all frustrations do not lead to aggression and there are other reactions to frustration besides aggression, it is not possible to say that all people who are prejudiced suffer from frustration. Hence, besides, frustration and aggression there are also other causes of prejudice. Racial prejudice is found among the sadists and in persons with free floating aggression. Pathological personality systems like paranoia is found to be related to prejudice.

A paranoiac has been described as person who is not capable of understanding other people and who continuously attributes all types of motives to other people. He seeks for people as a target of his aggression. But the reverse is not true. All mentally sick people may not necessarily develop prejudice.

In a particular cultural and social set up, the individual is expected to fulfil certain social obligations. Very often he is forced to obey some social rules and regulations and show culturally approved behaviour. But the person has a lots of antisocial desires to be satisfied. This leads to conflict and clash. In an attempt to solve these conflicts prejudice occurs. Getting money and political eminence are good socially approved needs.

But, if the individual uses the socially disapproved ways to satisfy these needs and then rationalises, he projects and attributes his own faults on other groups, classes or castes, leading to the occurrence of prejudice.

Prejudice has its roots in the parental and cultural influences of adult life. Sometimes the culturally disapproved needs particularly which conflict with the moral ideology of the person are repressed.

Since, the repressed tensions remain in a dynamic form and always in the verge of coming out, they are reflected in the defence mechanism of projection. Through this mechanism, they attribute uncomplimentary and mallacious characters to a specific group or race.

The California study of Frenkel-Brunswik relating the T. T test conducted on the anti-semantic girls indicated meaningless jealousy, repressed hatred and suspicion towards parental figures. These repressed tendencies find out outlet in negative attitudes and antipathy against various racial groups which serve as scope goat.

Prejudice is also caused due to ambiguous and crisis situation. In a crisis situation, the individual frequently may take recourse to beliefs and attitudes of racial prejudice. At this moment, the only available interpretation offered to him by his culture and environment is accepted quickly to meet the crisis situation.

There is no time to wait, analyse and reason before accepting the facts. Their ambiguous and vague ideas and beliefs about other countries now in a crisis situation become crystallized and they quickly accept the readymade ideas and suggestions. People also seem to develop prejudice for the sake of self respect, to defend the self and to maintain the individuals identification with the society which is also called conformity.

Beliefs and attitudes of racial prejudice frequently stem from emotional experiences and needs.


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When a person hears the word prejudice, he or she might think it only refers to the racial prejudice often found between those with light skin and those with.

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Pride and Prejudice Essay: The Faults of Pride and Prejudice - The Faults of Pride and Prejudice If we investigate the themes, characters and setting of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice in an effort to find faults of logic, we must first recognize that the entire work is a fault of logic because Austen's world is a microcosm of one level of. Dec 06,  · This is my December essay that I had to write for school. I liked the topic, so I decided to post it. Prejudice We will never be able to measure the full effects of prejudice: I think it affects everyone, even if it occurs at a subconscious level. I will be the first to admit.

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Quotes, quotations, and sayings on prejudice, an obstacle to living life fully. In this essay we will discuss about Prejudice. After reading this essay you will learn about: 1. Meaning, Definition and Characteristic of Prejudice 2. Development of Prejudice 3. Determinants or Causes 4. Some Indian Studies 5. Functions 6. Methods of Reducing Prejudice and Discrimination. Contents: Essay on the Meaning, Definition and Characteristic of Prejudice Essay [ ].