UNIT 4: Social Challenges. Stereotyping, Prejudice, and Discrimination. January 16, 2012. Diversity. Diversity
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UNIT 4: Social Challenges Stereotyping, Prejudice, and Discrimination January 16, 2012
Diversity Diversity • The human world is a very diverse one, made up of people of both genders who come from a variety of races, social and religious backgrounds who communicate in an equally wide variety of language and have differing abilities. Unfortunately, along with this diversity, the world also experiences varying degrees of understanding and acceptance of these differences. Stereotyping, Prejudice, and Discrimination Defined • Stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination are a few of the negative effects of diversity. The chart on the next slide provides definitions for these terms.
STEREOTYPE - a generalization, frequently false or over simplified, that is used to describe a group, without respect to individual differences. • PREJUDICE - derived from a word meaning to "prejudge". It is a set of negative opinions or attitudes about a group or individuals in that group that has no basis in fact.
DISCRIMINATION - unfair treatment of people based on race, ethnicity, nationality, language, faith, gender or disability. • DIRECT DISCRIMINATION – any actions, standards or policies that are clearly discriminatory on their face and that are meant to bring about the inequitable treatment of certain groups. • SYSTEMIC DISCRIMINATION – any organizational policies or practices that create or continue inequitable treatment of certain groups.
Prejudice as Learned • Social scientists agree that prejudice is something that is learned, either through the process of socialization or through experience (or a lack of experience). • A variety of social scientists have developed theories to explain prejudice.
Authoritarian Personality Theory • In 1950, Theodor Adorno developed The Authoritarian Personality Theory, which made the compelling argument that certain family conditions, particularly the experience of excessively harsh and moralistic parenting, produces an outlook on life which is overly deferential towards authority, socially conservative, and hostile towards minorities or other non-dominant groups.
Social Dominance Theory • The Social Dominance Theory was conceived in 1990 by psychologists Jim Sidanius and Felicia Pratto. This theory explains prejudice by suggesting that oppressive hierarchies exist in all societies. These hierarchies are based on age, gender, and on additional social criteria like nationality or ethnicity.
Allport’s Scale of Prejudice and Discrimination • In 1954, Gordon Allport developed a scale to measure prejudice and discrimination. • Antilocution - includes verbal prejudice, things like jokes or hate speech. • Avoidance - is when members of one group are ostracized by member of another. • Discrimination - is when the majority group is activily trying to harm the minority group via discrimination (denial of education and jobs). Here prejudice has been put into action. • Physical Attack - physical harm, including vandalism and violence, is carried out against the minority group. Physical harm is intended. • Extermination - The majority group attempts the extermination of the minority group.
Consequences of Discrimination • Obviously, discrimination can have an adverse affect on self-esteem. Over the longer term, discrimination can also cause a chain reaction of disadvantages. And finally, a cycle of discrimination is put in place where discrimination marginalizes a certain group. The majority group may be blind to the real causes of this marginalization and may point to it as a reinforcement of an existing stereotype. This stereotype breeds more discrimination which breeds more marginalization and so on…
Canadian Human Rights Commission • The CHRC was created by the Canadian government in 1977 to investigate and hear complaints about incidences of discrimination. • It also ensures that employers provide equal opportunities for employees from four designated groups: women, Aboriginal people, the disabled, and visible minorities. • The CHRC also prepares reports on the issue of discrimination, and distributes educational information to the public and employers.
Solutions • Whether or not prejudice can be unlearned is a question that many social scientists have tried to answer. • Most modern social scientists believe that it can. How? Through education about the negative effects of prejudice in all of its forms, exposure to different groups and individuals and legal protection for those who are most at risk.
UNIT 4: Social Challenges Canada’s Diversity January 16, 2012
Canada as a Microcosm of the World • Canada’s multicultural diversity is what distinguishes the country from the rest of the world. The variety of cultural, ethnic and linguistic backgrounds of Canada’s 33 million people is found no where else on earth. Every year roughly 200,000 immigrants choose Canada as their new home, further broadening diversity.
Canada has become a world leader in tackling the issues of diversity and social change. Canada, for instance, is a member of the International Network on Cultural Policy and chairs its Working Group on Cultural Diversity and Globalization. Canada was the first country in the world to adopt a multicultural policy. Many nations followed our lead and can boast that they have put these policies in place. And frequently Canada is called upon to advise other nations in handling tensions related to diversity.
Diversity has been part of Canada’s makeup since its earliest days. When the first settlers arrived, there were over 50 distinct aboriginal groups already living in Canada. And our first laws enshrined the concept of bilingualism.
Social Sciences and Diversity • Social scientists focus their studies of diversity on several issues. • They want to know: • What is the effect of diversity on immigrants and other minorities? • What is the effect of diversity on Canadian society as a whole? • What is the relationship between multiculturalism and globalization?
What is the effect of diversity on immigrants and other minorities? • Immigrants and other minorities report a range of effects that diversity has had on their lives.
For Aboriginal Canadians, diversity in the form of European settlers led to threats against their culture and their traditional way of life. Some aboriginals would argue that they can never truly recover everything that they have lost. In fact, discussions on diversity frequently centre on the experience of immigrants and leave out the experiences of Canada’s Native peoples.
Other ethnic minorities, particularly visible minorities, report having experienced discrimination and further report varying degrees of acceptance into the Canadian community. In a more subtle way, diversity can also encourage the “homogenization” of cultures and for some ethnic communities, a clash between the values of the “old world” and those of the new world.
In a more positive vein, Canada’s embracing of diversity has led to increased funding that helps protect cultures and lifestyles at risk. Multicultural organizations and festivals are thriving in Canada. Diversity has helped improve the understanding and tolerance of certain traditionally hostile cultures toward one another. Social scientists point to Canada as proof that it is possible for all people of the world to live together in harmony and peace.
What is the effect of diversity on Canadian society? • Diversity has had several interesting effects on Canada. • Many believe that our cultural diversity gives us a tolerance and understanding of other cultures that is lacking in other, less diverse nations. This has placed us on the world stage as a nation renowned for its peacekeeping and negotiating skills.
Within Canada, our experiences with ethnic diversity have led us to accept, and even encourage, diversity in other areas. For instance, our concept of diversity has progressed beyond race and ethnicity to include gender, sexual orientation, and a range of abilities and ages.
Diversity has also been a major advantage in providing Canada with access to global markets. • This does not mean that there have not been problems related to diversity. In the same CRIC study that is referenced above, 58% of people expressed concern that immigrants’ loyalty to Canada could suffer if they maintained too strong an attachment to their countries of origin.
There is also a concern with the concept of hyphenated Canadians. Are they Canadians first or Irish, Chinese or African first? And does the answer really matter? • Intolerance, and even racism, still exists but Canada has enacted a broad series of laws and policies to protect and enhance diversity.
At the federal level, these include the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Canadian Human Rights Act, the Employment Equity Act, the Official Languages Act, the Pay Equity Act, and the Multiculturalism Act. • Provinces and territories also have laws, human rights commissions, and programs that promote diversity. • Finally, Canada reinforces its commitment to diversity as a signatory to international conventions including, for example, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. • The benefit for Canada is that all of these laws and policies benefit and protect all Canadians.
What is the relationship between diversity and globalization? • Some social scientists argue that globalization degrades the quality and diversity of world culture. Others argue that economic globalization enhances culture by fostering wealth in developing nations, freeing them from the struggle to survive, and allowing the local resources to further develop their cultures.