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What is stereotyping?

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  • Essay length: 628 words
  • Submitted: 15/08/2003
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AS and A Level Media

The first 200 words of this essay...

Priyanka Shah

Professor Hunt

HSS 099

24 October 2002

What is stereotyping? "A rigid mental image that summarizes whatever is believed to be typical about a group" (Robertson 1987). It's not as simple as it sounds or as it is used in everyday life. Due to our lack of interest in analyzing and understanding information we utilize the short cut called stereotyping. "Stereotyping is as natural to people as thinking itself" (Longstreet, 1978, p. 10). Life of people has become very complex and difficult and that has led to the increase in misinterpretations and wrong ideas about different groups of people. Stereotypes are inflexible and they are learned quickly from family, friends, coworkers and the media. It leads to inflexible categories on our minds and hearts. The most powerful source of stereotypes is our own negative experiences.

I have been stereotyped many times by the people on my way back home - on railway station, school, by taxi drivers etc. However, I never cared what people thought about me being an Indian because that used to distract my mind. There is this one incident that my friend happened to tell me, just

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