Stereotypes And Stereotypes Of Stereotyping Essay

Stereotypes And Stereotypes Of Stereotyping Essay

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You make assumptions of people as soon as you see them. Do you ever look at someone and make assumptions right away about that person without knowing them? Stereotypes occur without you realizing it. Stereotype is “to believe unfairly that all people or things with a particular characteristic are the same” (“Stereotype”). I believe everywhere in our American society we either stereotype or witness stereotyping because it has become a natural instinct. Psychologists say we categorize -- or stereotype -- by age and race and gender, because our brains are wired to do so automatically (Stossel and Kendall para. 4).
The idea of stereotyping spread throughout America in the 20th century. At the end of the 1940s, all the trends of gender, “traditional” American families, and expectations of the ideal family characterizing the rest of the twentieth century suddenly reversed themselves (Coontz para. 1). In the 1970s, psychologists went into depth with the study and research about the way people think. In the early 1980s, there were theories about stereotypes and Americans believed there were people who were stereotypical only when it came to things such as racism and sexism. A psychology professor at Yale University, Mahzarin Banaji, experienced discrimination because of her sex and race. Psychologist Banaji and her colleagues have been “…studying something far more subtle, and more insidious: what 's known as automatic or implicit stereotyping, which, they find, we do all the time without knowing it” (Paul para. 2). We tend to stereotype because it is a learned behavior, and the problem is we cannot seem to help it.
For instance, in the essay, “I’d Rather Be Black Than Female,” Shirley Chisholm mentions positive stereotypes about women ...


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... that stereotype (“The Stereotype Threat” para. 4). Steele calls it “subconscious self-handicapping”, and shows how when you feel threatened you fear because you know you will be judged based on your identity (“The Stereotype Threat” para. 16). Like I mentioned earlier, females have been brainwashed into believing that women are meant for specific responsibilities, which causes the fear of being judged by society.
In other words, stereotypes will always exist; however, do not be afraid to go beyond what is said a female can do. Going outside the box can be scary, and fear causes you to want to go back into that box to be like everyone else or at least be the way society expects you to be. Remember, you can prove to our American society that the judgments of women being the inferior social status will not stop you from achieving what you desire to accomplish in life.

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