Humans Enjoy Organizing Things? Essay

1333 Words Nov 22nd, 2016 6 Pages
Humans enjoy organizing things. More specifically, we enjoy grouping other humans. Many social categories are formed based on the similarities of people in them. Stereotypes are clusters of characteristic that are associated with all members of a specific social group, often including qualities that are unrelated to the objective criteria that define the group. They are based on the assumption that people have certain characteristics because of their membership in a particular group. Attributing a stereotypic cause for an outcome or event can often blind us to the true causes of the event. The book gives an example of parents who assume their daughter’s poor computer skills are due to her gender, rather than a lack of instruction. The issue with stereotypes is that once they are formed, they are hard to shake. A reason for this is that stereotypes are not always completely false. They often have some truth to them, which makes them easy to confirm. Another issue that arises is stereotypic beliefs becoming expectations. When this happens, and they are applied to all members of a given group, they can be both misleading and damaging.
Stereotypes are closely related to the ideas of in-groups and out-groups. Humans have a very strong tendency to perceive other humans in terms of “us” and “them”. “Us” refers to the in-group, which is the group we belong to. On the other hand, “them” refers to the out-group, and is the social group we do not belong to. Neither are limited to…

Related Documents