INFLUENCE OF STEREOTYPES
the accuracy of personality judgments, especially first Impressions are greatly influenced by the observer’s acceptance of cultural stereo types. Stereo types are accepted so uncritically that they influence the individual’s attitudes about himself and help to shape his personality. Stereotypes are crude over generalization of some important characteristics of a group of people which are used as short hand method of characterization.
If you mention a verbal symbol such as “the pastor” or the “prostitute” several ideas and images plus strong feelings, attitudes and values come into your mind as a result of social Stereotypes which you have acquired.
Stereo types are learned at home, in school, from the community and through mass media.
Stereotypes have special influence in three areas:
1. in judgment of other people
2. In judgment of self
3. In judgment of situations
Dynamic – the ever changing character
Organization – Consistent operating order
Physiological systems – beliefs, motives, sentiments, ideals and values.
Individuality – the uniqueness of one’s personality.
Stereotypes – generalized terminologies used as a short cut method of describing a group of people.
the components of the personality pattern are the concept of self and an integrated system of learned and inherited responses called traits.
Pattern can be compared to a wheel in which the hub represents the concept of self and spokes represent the traits.
The interrelationship can be illustrated by examining the feelings of persons.
For our purpose we shall call the persons Mr. A and Mr. B.
Mr A concept of life: life is unfair.
Mr. A characteristic patterns of adjustment: Mr. A feels sorry for self: complains, projects blame on others, solicits sympathy: and day dreams of being persecuted.
Mr. B concept of life: am a lucky person.
Mr. B’s characteristic pattern of adjustment friendly, talkative, satisfied with self, flattering to others and appreciative. In time these behavior patterns will become so well learned from reputation that they will constitute a person’s characteristic methods of adjustment and occur in a predictable manner.
Three major factors contribute to the formation and development of personality pattern:
1. The Individual’s hereditary endowment.
2. Early experiences within family
3. Important events in later life outside the home environment.
We can therefore say that personality pattern is the product of an interaction between biological and environmental factors.
Biological factors such as physique, intelligence, are just potential: they will develop into their full capacity depending on how the environmental factors influence them.
The environmental factors that would influence the self-concept are the family experience and later other experiences outside home.
The family interactions with parents and siblings help mold an individual’s self-concept. It is within the home that an individual learns the socially approved behaviors, through imitation and training under the guidance of parents.
These incorporated behaviors then will Influence the development of self-concept.