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Questions to Ponder for May 13, 2002

Questions for Chapter 7.

1. How is the self-fulfilling prophecy exhibited in Jemmott and Gonzalez's study?

2. Do you agree with Aronson's limiting the definition of prejudice to negative attitudes? Why or why not? Are there any groups for whom you hold a positive stereotype?

3. How do prejudiced beliefs become unfalsifiable?

4. What is the "ultimate attribution error"?

5. What gender-related attributional differences have researchers found?

6. Why isn't prejudice easily changed via "information campaigns"?

7. If encouraging people to engage in contact with other groups is going to be successful in reducing prejudice, what factors are important to keep in mind?

8. How did dissonance affect reactions to desegregation?

9. What is the jigsaw method? How does it work?

10. What is "nonconscious" ideology? What examples of it are discussed in this chapter?

11. What is an authoritarian personality? Is it related to prejudice?

12. What role do conflict over scarce resources and competition play in prejudice?

13. Is there anyone who has no prejudices? What prejudices (if any) do you think you hold? Are there some prejudices you act on, and others you try to control? Have you ever become suddenly aware of a prejudice you didn't know you held, and if so, what triggered it?

14. Think about the current affirmative action debate (e.g., the debate surrounding whether or not affirmative action is still needed, how fair it is, the recent debate in CA). Using what you know about self-fulfilling prophecy, what arguments can you construct for affirmative action? Against it?