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'Discrimination and prejudice in crowd settings'.

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Introduction

Assignment- 'Discrimination and prejudice in crowd settings' (A) The first assumption in the article is how people in a mass crowd can become very discriminative and racist such as in a football stadium. It is quite often that we see racism in football and as a group becomes larger each individual has a less chance of being identified and therefore punished. The relationship between deindividuation and anti-social behaviour is explained by Le bon, who helps to elaborate on the psychology of crowd behaviour and individuals within that crowd. The second assumption in the article is about how people in a football stadium are withdrawn from helping when they clearly witness a racist or aggressive event. Darley and Latane (1970) explain the concept of diffusion of responsibility and how large groups may affect the cognitive process of helping. The third assumption is that as individuals self-categorise themselves in a football stadium they become known as in-groups and out-groups. ...read more.

Middle

Additionally the individual may have accepted responsibility, however it was shared by all the witnesses and therefore someone else rationalised that somebody else may have already intervened. It is evident that in the presence of others intervening will be inhibited. The third issue in the article states 'I would estimate that at least 70 percent turned away from the match and focused their attention and directed their chanting of 'BURNLY, BURNLY, BURNLY'to the encouragement of the hooligans. The third issue in the article describes how discrimination evolves from certain settings in the crowd, when they are arbitrarily divided into groups. The important idea is identification. We identify with groups that we perceive ourselves to belong to, this is evident as the crowd shout out " Hello, hello, we are the George boys ". This demonstrates that the crowd perceive themselves as unique individuals and self-categorise themselves as one of the group. ...read more.

Conclusion

It has been found that a stamped addressed envelope dropped in a crowded place were less likely to be posted. Holahan (1977) argues that this is due to fears for personal safety. Therefore the environment could be altered so that a more friendly approach is created and so that external factors do not affect someones safety. For example creating more space between individuals and introducing more stewards could help to decrease the diffusion of responsibility. Discrimination and racism in football is inevitable. However lowering the extent to which it is displayed can be controlled. As discrimination is mainly caused by groups (self-categorisation) it would be possible to blur boundaries between groups or even lower competition could help to lower hostility. The study by Deutsch and Collins (1951) compared two kinds of housing projects between blacks and whites. It was found that neighbourly contact lead to a decrease in prejudice. This study demonstrates that prejudice can be lowered significantly if cultures such as black & whites are in contact environmentally. Educating about racism could also help reduce prejudice for example in schools. Atif Ullah 1 ...read more.

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