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Chapter 11: Content of Stereotypes: Gender, Race, and Age

Introduction

Up to this point we have followed contemporary practice and focused attention on general principles of how stereotypes affect processing of information about individuals and groups. Yet most people im agine th at we a re in the b usines s of do cum enting t he con tent of v ariou s stereoty pes. Wh en I tell non-psychologists that I study stereotyping, after the obligatory comment about how interesting that must be, they often a sk me a question about som e particular stereotype. "You kn ow I've often wo ndered", they say, "why people think that lawyers are so mercenary”. Perhaps someone will say something about how on ly prejudiced people have stereotypes. O r they might question me gingerly abou t some favorite stereotype of theirs being true. "I don't know why Mexica ns get so angry w hen we say th ey are inclined to com mit crim es. All yo u ha ve to d o is wa tch TV and s ee for you rself how man y crimes they co mmit."

The Importance of Content

So far we have had little to say about the specific content of stereotypes. What do people think differentiates men from wo men? W hat is the stereotype of the menta lly ill? Are African-Americans seen to be fun-loving, and if so why? If these questions seem appropriate, even interesting, why have we waited for 6 chapters to get to them?

The Social Cognition Approach

Modern social cognition, the area that has most influenced current research on stereotyping, focuses on processing concerns and pays little attention to the content that comes along for the ride (Schneid er, 1991, 19 96). After all mem ory process es must w ork pretty mu ch the sa me wh ether we are trying to recall the names of high school classmates or people seen at a party last week. Does anyone seriously believe that the process of learning information about animal groups is much different than for plants or groups of people? Is there any reason to believe that our cognitive system cares much about whether it is forming an illusory correlation between one minority group and one trait or another group and another trait. Process is process, and content is superfluous.

Some Important Content Questions

The Origins of Stereotypes: And y et there ar e som e things left out w hen w e focus so exclu sively on processing concerns and avoid discussion of content. First, while many of the processing models make important points a bout how stereotypes are maintained and how they affect our perception of people, most have little to say about the origins of stereotypes. Why are Jews seen as clannish and blacks as crime-prone and not the reverse? To be sure, in many cases the source of stereotype content seems obvious enough. Culture and experience seem to provide a kernel of truth which our cognitive and motivational processes then amplify. As we shall see, that is, at best, only a partial answer, but before we can sort out accuracy issues we have to know what traits are ascribed to different groups. Our cognitive machinery may not care about the content of our stereotypes, but other people do and they will be annoyed when w e make mistakes, so metimes even w hen we’re accu rate.

Stereotype Uniformity: Why is there more consensus that some groups have some traits than for other combinations? For example, why is there more general agreement that Asian Americans are hard- working than that Jews are mercenary? Does this uniformity make any difference to the ways we use these stereotypes?

Are Some Groups Magnets for Stereotypes? An even m ore basic concern is w hy we seem to

stereotype some groups and not others. Why do we have stereotypes about red-heads and blonds and not abou t people with mou sey brown h air? Why do we seem to stereotype obes e and not skin ny people?

Why are we more likely to have stereotypes of Roman Catholics than Methodists? We will have to know something about content to answer those and other questions.

Content Affects Behavior: The “bottom line” is important: the content of stereotypes has enormou s impact on h ow we beh ave toward other people. Seeing someon e as lazy and hostile is likely to lead to different sorts of interactions (or lack thereof) tha n seeing her as sm art and hard -working. At a minimum we would want to know whether stereotypes of a given group are predominantly positive or negative. In the last chapter we argued that stereotypes can be confirmed through social interaction, and here we wan t to disc uss m ore gen erally the p ersistenc e of certa in form s of stereo types.

Features Are Not Created Equal: Traits and other features th emselves are not intercha ngeable. Intuitively once I hav e decided that a particu lar student is intelligent , it is hard for her to shed her smar ts before m y eyes. O n the o ther ha nd, I m ay be h appy to give up my att ribution that sh e is fundam entally lazy when she proves that so metimes does w ork hard. In oth er words, som e traits seem more dispositiona l than others. But traits are n ot created equal in other w ays as well. Mos t stereotypes are mixt ures of p ositive a nd ne gative q ualities, b ut wh y then do neg ative see m to pre dom inate? I s this due to som e in-group/ou t-group dyna mic, in that we frequently stereotype peop le from disliked out- groups negatively? Or is there something more basic at work? Again, we will have to know something about the co ntent of various s tereotypes as well as the social an d cultural geograph y of the groups to which they are attach ed to a nsw er thos e sorts o f questio ns.

Groups and Categories

We are not at a loss for information about the content of stereotypes for a great many groups. Obviously you don’t have to be culturally cool to have a handle on stereotypes about culturally salient groups based on gender, race, age, and various stigmata. But when you think about it, we also have stereotypes about people who own one kind of car versus another, for that matter people who drive bright red cars, peo ple who live in on e part of to wn v ersus a noth er, even pe ople wh o prefer ve ggie burgers to Big Macs ; these stereotypes have not been systematically studied, perhaps for good reason.

Cautions: In this chapter and the next two we will review what we know about the content of stereotypes about several groups. There are a few points to keep in mind, however. The first is that many of these stereotypes are ephemeral an d fleeting. Advertisers may go to great lengths to create stereotypes about the users of their products, and what advertising giveth advertising can taketh away. It is doubtful that anyone except advertisers ever cared much about the effectively created stereotypes of people who drove Stud ebakers or smo ked Ch esterfields. Second, some more important group stereotypes may be quite dated. For areas such as race and gender, for exa mple, where w e have da ta for 50 yea rs or more, it is eas y to take th e stereotypes o f a generation or two ago as still existing today, especially when there are political agendas lurking in the background. However, stereotypes of many groups have become less well-defined and more positive over the past couple of decades, although, to be sure, there is always the lingering suspicion that this has more to do w ith “political correctness” norm s than real beliefs. Whenever po ssible we will present data on tra ditiona l as well a s con tempo rary stere otypes and d iscuss chan ges. Finally, much o f the research we will be presenting did n ot carefully distinguish betw een attitud es tow ard an d beliefs a bout variou s grou ps. This is particu larly true when we dea l with pu blic opinion data , important data from our point of view b ecause they w ere not collected on limited sam ples such as college students. Again, we will sometimes present data on the favorability of attitudes and not make sharp distinc tions b etween prejudic e and stereoty pes. Th ere is no p oint in b eing ov erly peda ntic abou t the dist inction s at this point.

The Big Three: In this c hapter w e will con sider stere otypes of wh at we m ight thin k of as t he big three: gender, race, and, age. We ca ll them the big three not becau se they are important, altho ugh they certainly are, or because we h appen to hav e abunda nt data on them, which w e do. Rather there seems to be something sp ecial about race, gender an d age categories (Levin & Levin, 1982). In th e first place, they are categories we do not choose. Second (and related) they are categories that have at least a small and, for certa in featu res, a larg e genetic c ompo nent. T hird, th ese categ ories are c ultura lly salient , proba bly in

almost all cultures, but certainly in our Western version. Fourth they are not optional cognitive categories. I may forget the occupation of the man I talked to for two hours at a party, but I will not forget his race, age, or gender. Fifth, as Brewer (1988) and others have pointed out membership in these categories is ordinarily easily determined through the senses. There will always be marginal or ambiguous cases, but usually we do not have any trouble determining whether someone is female, black, or a teenager. In some respect the big three are the prototypic stereotype magnets. Sixth, Sidanius and Pratto (1999 ) argue t hat all s ocieties h ave po wer an d statu s hierarc hies ba sed on age an d gend er, and in more high ly developed societies, based on arbitra ry set catego ries. In our so ciety race an d ethnicity a re such catego ries wh ereas religio n, cast e, or occ upatio n ma y be mo re impor tant. In the next c hapter w e will discuss stereotypes o f various stigmatized groups, a nd in C hapter 9 we will feature stereotypes based primarily on physical appearance, language use, and roles such as occupations. In Chapter 10, we will turn to a consideration of traits and other features.

Gender

In the past qua rter century more research o n stereotyping has b een directed to gender than to any oth er category. W hile there was some early work on gender stereo typing (Fernb erger, 1948; S herriffs & Jarrett, 1 953; S herriffs & McK ee, 1957 ; Smith , 1939 ), the ma jor researc h stimu lus to m odern research in this area w as a pap er by Ros enkrantz , Vogel, Bee, Brov erman, a nd Bro verman (1968). Th ese autho rs simply had subjects rate the extent to which males and females exhibited 122 traits. The 41 items that at least 75% of men a nd 75% of wom en agreed “ belonged ” more to one gend er than th e other were designated as sex-stereotype traits; there were 12 feminine traits (e.g., talkative, religious, quiet, expresses tender feelings), and 29 m asculine traits (e.g., aggressive objective, logical, self-confident, active). Male and female subjects showed high agreement as to which traits were masculine and which feminine, and self-ratings were also c onsistent with the stereotyp e ratings. More male tha n female traits were perceived as socially d esirable, but th e mean ra tings of m ale and fem ale traits were sim ilar. 1

Content

There was and remains broad consensus on what traits “belong” to men and to women; however, as we will see there has been less agreement on what all this means. Nearly everyone in our society (including even social psychologists) knows, in general terms, what gender stereotypes are. Not only do people infer traits from gender, but they are willing to infer which gender “goes with” particular constellations of traits (Cowan & Stewart, 1977) although these inferences are generally not symmetrical (See Chapter 3). Table 7.1 shows some traits that have commonly been perceived to be gender linked.

Fema le Traits

Male T raits

Affectionate

Adventuresome

Dependent

Achievemen t oriented

Emotional

Active

Friendly

Adventurous

Kind

Ambitious

Mild

Coarse

1 It is hard to know what to make of this. It is possible that people genuinely think males have more of the positive traits. Alternatively it may be that the investigators inadvertently gave the subjects more of the socially d esirable traits likely to be chosen for males. Th ere are actua lly more pos itive traits that a re female th an m ale gener ally (San kis, Co rbitt, & W idiger, 19 99).

Pleasant

Independent

Prudish

Loud

Sensitive

Physically Strong

Sentimental

Robust

Symp athetic

Self-Confident

Talkative

Stable

Warm

Tough

Whiny

Unemotional

Traits taken from De Lisi & Soundranayagam (1990) and from Williams & Bennett (1975)

Despite clear differences in the kinds of traits that are ascribed to males and females, most researchers (e.g., De Lisi & Sound ranayaga m, 1990; H elgeson, 1994) in this area have foun d that gender stereotypes are only loosely and weakly held. Few people assume that males and females are from different planets (popular books notwithstanding) or that the traits traditionally associated with one gender are proscribed for the other. Popular assumptions to the contrary (Deaux & Lewis, 1984; Foushee, Helmreich, & Spence, 1979, having masculine traits does not preclude having feminine ones, and at the level of self-reports they tend to be ind ependent (Spence, 199 9), or even positively correlated (Spence, Helmreich, & Stapp, 1975b) 2 .

Agentic and Communal Features

Although gender stereotypes are mu lti-faceted and complex (Dea ux & Kite, 1993 ), following the lead of S pence a nd H elmreich (1978 ), several a utho rs hav e sugg ested th at thes e gende r-linked tra its fall into broad ca tegories. One way to summa rize this is that men are perceived to h ave traits that hav e a strong quality of action and instrumentality, what are sometimes called agentic qualities, and by contrast wo men are perceived to be m ore emotionally expressive, mo re concerned with relation ships, to have wha t is som etimes ca lled a co mmu nal orien tation (Eagly, 1 987). G enerally m en perceiv e agent ic values such as freedom, accom plishment, and self-respect as relatively more imp ortant than d o wom en who value comm una l values such as friend ship, equ ality, an d hap piness m ore (Di D io, Sara govi, Koes tner, & A ubé, 19 96). Bes t, William s & Brig gs (198 0) foun d that on sem antic d ifferential sc ales ma le traits were rated as more active and strong or potent, a result that seems to be replicated in many cultu res (Willia ms & Best, 19 90). Pa rents ev en see ba by girls a s less stro ng tha n boy s (Kar raker, Vo gel, & Lake, 1995; Rubin, Provenzano, & Luria, 1974), although gender stereotypes of babies tend to be comp lex (Con drey & C ondr ey, 197 6) and not esp ecially stro ng (Stern & Ka rraker, 19 89).

Traits and Other Features

Throughout this book we have alluded to the notion that stereotypes are broad and consist of more than just traits; gender seems to encompass an unus ually wide variety of features (Deaux & LaFrance, 1998; Twenge, 1999). Think about the features that most people would agree differentiate the genders. Promin ent amon g these are physical features. Ma les are generally larger, stronger, faster (Nakdimen , 1984), and certainly w e perceive them to be that w ay. We expect men to be more interested in sports and women more interested in the arts, especially dance and ballet. Children (Pellett, 1994)

2 Howev er, ratings of the global terms ma sculine and fem inine are negatively correlated for both males and females suggesting that our sense of gender identity is not based primarily on the traits we think w e posses s (Spen ce & Bu ckner, 2 000).

and their parents (Hartley & Hardesty, 1964; Pellett & Ignicio, 1994) have stereotyped views of which physic al activ ities boys and g irls are likely to enjoy. A dult m en an d wo men a re sharp ly different iated in terms of am ount o f sports participa tion and the sports th ey participate in (C sizma, W illig, & Schurr, 1988; Eng el, 1994), and other leisure activities such as drinking beha vior also show tremendous gender differenc es (Ricc iardelli & W illiams, 1 995). M en are m ore likely to prefer actio n mo vies, an d I’m t old that there is a species of movie called chick flicks that appeal mostly to females. Science an d math are still seen as m asculine d isciplines, wh ile arts and th e huma nities are mo re feminin e (And re, Whig ham , Hend erickso n, & C ham bers, 19 99; W hitehea d, 199 6). Occ upatio ns rem ain gender stereotyped (Cha pter 9) – even in these days of increa sing gender equality, we are n ot likely to encou nter ma le secretar ies, or fem ale con structio n wo rkers. Th e cultu ral stereo type is th at men will make more m oney th an w omen , and th at wo men w ill be more involv ed with hou sehold and es pecially child rea ring resp onsib ilities. Men are s een to be m ore argum entative an d verbally a ggressive, in pa rt becaus e they are (Nicotera & Rancer, 1994). We perceive females to use nonverbal cues differently than males (Briton & Hall, 1995, to display express more emotions (Fabes & Ma rtin, 1991; Plant, Hy de, Keltner, & Devine, 2000) and to display different emotions in different situations than do males (Hess, Senécal, Kirouac, Herrera, Ph ilippot, & Kleck, 2 000; Ro binson & John son, 19 97). Given the importance of physical sex in relationships between men and women, we might also expect to find sexual cha racteristics in gender stereotypes as well, althou gh this is under-investiga ted (Ashmore, Del Boca, & Wohlers, 1986; Clements-Schreiber & Rempel, 1995; Deaux & Kite, 1987; Holland & Davidson, 1983; Sherriffs & McKee, 1957). In that regard there is some evidence (e.g., Abbey, 1982; Edmo nson, & Conge r, 1995; K owalsk i, 1993; Reg an, 199 7; Saal, Joh nson, & Weber, 19 89) that m ales are more prone to perceive both males and fem ales as interested in and a vailable for sex than are fema les and females as more seductive and flirtatious (Shotland & Craig, 1988). Men and women have some wha t different c oncep tions o f sexua l self-identities (And ersen, C yrano wski, & Espind le, 1999 ). So there is a wide range of real and perceived sex differences, and gender stereotypes track measured d ifferences between males and females respectably well. While several widely-cited stu dies (e.g., Allen, 1995; Lunnebo rg, 1970; Martin, 19 87) have sh own tha t people exaggerate gender differenc es, sum maries of suc h stud ies (Eag ly, 199 5; Swim , 1994 ) sugg est tha t if anyth ing peo ple underestimate gen der differences. In fact, perceived gender differences are so pervasiv e that we even think of pla nts, anim als, non-rep resentation al paintings , and ho useho ld objects su ch as tab les and ch airs as either masculine or feminine (Fagot, Leinbach, Hort, & Strager, 1997), a fact of potential importance when we con sider ho w child ren learn cultur al lesson s abo ut stereo types. When you sto p and th ink abou t it, our stereotypes for males a nd fema les cover a lot o f territory -- appearance, interests, behaviors, traits, skills, and abilities. Research by Deaux and Lewis (1984) shows that people perceive moderate correlations among relative femininity and masculinity across a number of these areas. A male who likes ballet will also be expected to have a more feminine job, to be more in terested in children , and to have a well dev eloped em otiona l side to h is natu re. Alterna tively males who are sports addicts and Sunday couch potatoes might be seen to have more guy traits, interests, and values. Interestingly, in the Deaux and Lewis study subjects drew inferences from physical appearan ce cues more readily tha n from any other kind of gend er related feature (such as roles or traits), although Freema n (1987) foun d that traits were stronger predictors th an physical app earance.

Contexts

Trait Augmentation: The kinds of traits we assign to males and females may also vary a good deal by particular con text. Imagine, if you will, the traits you migh t associate with a m ale kindergarten teacher, Jose, as opposed to Maria. To be sure both would be seen as nurturing, but might you be inclined to see Jos e as even more k ind an d lovin g than Maria . After all, she might be a teacher either because teaching small children is generally seen as a female job or because of a preference based on pre-existing traits, but the only reason he would want such an atypical job is because he has the requisite traits. In attribution language this is called augmentation. In what they call the talking

platypus phenomenon 3 , Abramson , Goldberg, Greenberg, and A bramson (1978) show ed that wom en attorneys were seen a s more com petent than their male cou nterparts, presumably bec ause they ha ve to overcome gen der roadblocks to get where they are. 4 In a related ex ample, wo men entrep reneurs are judged to be m ore com petent th an m ales (Ba ron, M arkm an, & H irsa, 20 01). An d beca use fem ales sm ile more than males, unsmiling females are seen as less happy than their male counterparts (Deutsch, Lebaro n, & Fry er, 1987 ).

Role Interactions: We are male or female, but we also have different gender related roles which affect stereotypes (Ganong & Coleman , & Mapes, 199 0). Both married m en and w omen are eva luated more positively than unmarried (Etaugh & Stern, 1994), unless they are teenagers (Stacy & Richman, 1997). Married w omen are seen to h ave better interpersonal skills than divo rced wom en, and employ ed mothers with small children are rated as especially competent (Etaugh & Study, 1989), but lose some of their comm unal traits (Bridges & O rza, 199 3). Stepmo thers, divorc ed moth ers, and u nwed m others are generally eva luated n egatively (Ga nong & Colema n, 1995 ).

Evaluation

It has often been suggested (e.g., Broverman, Vogel, Broverman, Clarkson, & Rosenkrantz, 1972; McKee & Sherriffs, 1957; Rosenkrantz, et al., 1968; Wolff & Taylor, 1979) that male traits are seen as more positive than female traits, that while it is good to be instrumental and assertive as well as nurturant and emotional, generally the male, instrumental, traits are perceived to be more positive than the fema le, expressiv e ones. H owev er, like man y depictio ns of rea l and p erceived sex differen ces, this one turns ou t to be basically incorrect. Most recent stu dies find either no essential relationship betw een social desirability and gender traits (Ashmore & Tumia, 1980 5 ; Williams & Best, 1977 ) or the reverse, namely th at “fema le” traits are mo re positive (e.g., Bergen & William s, 1991; C arpenter, 199 4a; Der- Kara betian & Smith , 1977 ; Eagly & Mlad inic, 19 89; Ea gly, Mla dinic, & Otto, 1 991; F eingold , 1998 ; Fiebert & Mey er, 1997; La ner & La ner, 1980 ; Langfo rd & Ma ckinno n, 2000 ; Sankis, C orbitt, & W idiger, 1999 ; Whis sell & Ch ellew, 19 94). Re cent stu dies ha ve fou nd th at fema les are eva luated more po sitively than males by both male and female subjects (Beauvais & Spence, 1987; Eagly, Mladinic, & Otto, 1991; Haddock & Zanna, 1994). Much of this differential is accounted for by the much greater advantage of women relative to men on the positive female traits, a difference that is greater than the male advantage on positive male traits (Eagly & Mladinic, 1994). Generally, the relationship between masculinity- femininity an d favora bility is weak a t best (Del Boc a, Ashm ore, & McM anus, 1 986), bu t stereotypes a re probably mo re favorable for females at this point in time.

Evaluation Is Situational

Few would want to argue that the female, communal traits, are always more positive than the male, agentic ones. In fact, to the extent that people tend to associate females with “warm and fuzzy” traits, they may well be evaluated less positively than men in situations (e.g., work) where communal traits arg uably have les s pay-o ff (Eagly & Mlad inic, 19 94). Eagly and Karau (2002) argue that women are disadvantaged in leadership situations in two ways . First, they are seen to lack t he agen tic traits s uppo sed requ ired for su ch pos itions. Fo r examp le, in one sim ulated hiring s tudy (Ja ckson , Esses, & Burris, 2 001), m ales we re preferred to females largely

3 The idea is that “it matters little what the platypus says, the wonder is that it can say anything at all”, Abram son, et al., 197 8, p. 123).

4 In fairness other research (e.g., Etaugh & Riley, 1983; Frank, 1988) shows the reverse, namely that people applying for or holding s ex-typical jobs are seen as more co mpetent.

5 In this and o ther studies (e.g., Del Boca & As hmore, 1980 b) males are sometim es seen to score higher on intellectually desirable traits (e.g., scientific, serious) but no t on socially desirable traits (e.g., sociable, popu lar).

because males were respected more, and the respect was largely a function of agentic qualities. Most mana gerial jobs are seen as a better fit for m ales than for females, presu mably b ecause th e former are more age ntic. Males a re described a s closer to su ccessful m anagers than fem ales are (Brenn er, Tomkiewicz, & Schein, 1989***; Heilman, Block, Martell, & Simon, 1989; Schein, 1973, 1975) although more s trongly by men (Deal & Steven son, 1 998; D odge, G ilroy, & Fe nzel, 19 95; Sch ein, Mu eller, & Jacobso n, 1989 ). Men are des cribed as m ore comp etent and potent tha n wom en except w hen both are also described as successful (Heilman, Block, & Martell, 1995), and even then some differences are not entirely era sed (M artell, Pa rker, Em rich, & C rawfo rd, 199 8). Secon d Eag ly and Kara u (200 2) sug gest tha t females some times pa y a price fo r agent ic behaviors. Task -oriented female leaders are seen as m ore effective but less congenial at least by su bjects who ha ve conservative sex role attitud es (Forsyth, Heiney, & W right, 1997) Agentic w omen are rated low on interperson al skills and are penalized w hen applying for jobs tha t seem to require them (Rudma n & Glick, 1999 , 2001). Female job applican ts who u se assertive influence tactics are evalua ted less positively than those who are more rational, but the reverse is true for males (Buttner & McEnally, 1996). Furthermore given a norm that women should be meek and modest, Rudman (1998) found that women who us ed self-promotion tactics, som ething encoura ged and va lued in men, were often rated negativ ely especia lly by oth er females . Thus in job situ ations wom en ma y be cau ght is a series of d ouble binds. To the extent they try to perform the agentic behaviors expected in the job, they will be seen as less wa rm, a n egative p erception that m ay ou tweigh the gain s from b eing ag entic. So male traits are likely to be preferred in what we have traditionally thought of as male jobs, those t hat em phas ize agen tic qua lities. Con versely, m en’s ste reotypic lack of c omm una l traits w ould likely be devalued in situations (teaching, caring for small children) that would seem to call for these traits. In deed m ale hom emak ers are perc eived m ore neg atively th an fem ales in th e same role (Rossen wasser, G onza les, & Ada ms, 198 5). So as Eag ly (1987) and o thers have argu ed, the real issue is not wheth er we value som e traits more th an oth ers but t he exten t to wh ich certa in traits a re seen to have “ payoff” for certain roles an d in certain situations. If that is correct, then the real cu lprit is that we have a cu lture that prizes work ov er hom e and agentic roles ov er com mun al ones .

Androgyny

Of cou rse, as ma ny hav e argued, th is is one area where w e can ha ve our ca ke and ea t it too -- both males and females can (and sometimes do) have both stereotypic masculine and feminine features. That is genera lly an a dvan tage. Fo r examp le, people ac tually lik e others who are and rogyn ous (i.e., those who possess both m asculine and feminine traits) more than th ose who a re strongly sex-typed (Crovitz & Steinman n, 1980 ; Green & K enrick, 199 4; Jackson , 1983a ; Jackson & Cash , 1985; M ajor, Carn evale, & Deau x, 1981 ; Steinm ann & Fox, 19 66; Stree t, Kimm el, & Kro mrey, 1 995). However, things may be more complex especially for romantic relationships. Both males and females prefer the feminine, expressive to masculine, instrumental traits in romantic partners (Green & Kenrick, 1994), but men seem to have a stronger preference for feminine women than females do for masculine m en (Orlofsky, 1982 ; Scher, 1984). Men a lso like masculine men more than a ndrogyno us ones (Street, Kimmel, & Kromrey, 1995). People who themselves androgynous have a particularly strong preference for androgynous others (Pursell & Banikiotes, 1978). Unfortunately as if there are enough reasons for conflicts and misunderstandings over gender issues, both men and women think that the other sex wants them to be mo re sex-typed than they w ant to be and more sex-typed than the other sex perceives them to be (Crov itz & Steinm ann, 19 80 ; Steinm ann & Fox, 196 6).

Is the Male Stereotype Clinically Healthier?

Contra ry to the ass umption of man y social scien tists, then m ale traits are no t generally mo re positive tha n female on es. A related find ing that h as been cited so often a s to becom e part of the folklo re on gender eva luation is also mislead ing. Broverman , Broverman, C larkson, Rosen krantz, and V ogel (1970) asked mental health professionals to describe a mentally healthy male, female and adult, and the descriptions of the mentally healthy male were more similar to the mentally healthy adult than were the descript ions o f the men tally hea lthy fem ale. This has led to the cla im tha t our st anda rds of w hat is

menta lly health y may favor a male d efinition . How ever, W idiger an d Settle (1 987) s how ed tha t this result w as an artifact o f the grea ter num ber of po sitive stereo type traits favorin g men that w ere used in he study. In any event other research (e.g., Kravetz, 1976; Phillips & Gilroy, 1985; Poole & Tapley, 1988) shows little or no bias in conceptions of mental health toward the male norm. That is not to say that therapists react the same to male and female patients; indeed several studies suggest that males and females seeking therapy are eva luated differently and a re seen a s hav ing differen t caus es and progn osis for their pro blems (H ansen & Reek ie, 1990 ; Heesa cker, W ester, Vog el, Went zel, Mejia-M illan, & Good holm, 19 99; Israel, Ra skin, Libow , & Pravd er, 1978; Teri, 19 82).

Gender Roles Are Prescriptive

One o f the imp ortan t way s that g ender d iffers from man y other social a nd cu ltural ca tegories is that gender stereotypes tend to be prescriptive as well as descriptive (Eagly, 1987; Fiske & Stevens, 1993; Stoppard & Kalin, 1978). So, for example, people may well think that blacks are more athletic than whites and whites have more academic skills, but in this day and age few would want to argue that young black males ought to play b asketb all rathe r than do w ell in scho ol. 6 On the other hand, many people think that females are not only more nurturant than males but that it is their job to be so and that males n ot only are, but shou ld be, co mpetitiv e and emotio nally “ strong ”. Who suffers most from such norms? Obviously, in the context of historic discrimination against wom en it is na tural to assu me tha t wom en are m ore stereo typed th an are men a nd th at they are held more strongly to their stereotypes. As we have seen from research on categorization, men tend to be the default category, to ha ve the traits that we asso ciate more with being a normal hu man, and so the traits that women are presumed to possess are departures from normality and hence more stereotypic. College a ged w omen report feelin g more pressu re to con form to the trad itional p assive feminin e role than men do but do not differ from men in experienced pressu re to portray the more active roles (Davids on, 198 1). How ever, as is often th e case, a pproac hed fro m a d ifferent pers pective th ings loo k, well, different. Som etimes wo men are g ranted m ore freedom to depart from their stereotypic ro les than a re men. Being a tomboy is a permissible, even positive, role for girls, but being a sissy and having traditionally feminine interests is less permissible for boys (Martin, 1990). Whereas tomboys are seen as highly similar to boys a nd even m ore positively on traits such a s likeability, adaptability and conc eit, sissies are seen as more n egatively tha n girls on tra its such a s aggressio n, likeability, indepen dence, self- reliance, and warmth (Martin, 1995). Of course, grown women may not have the same freedoms. Wom en hav e entered trad itional ma le occupa tions an d roles, and gradua lly are becom ing more successful in thos e roles. However, there has n ot been a correspon ding mov ement towa rd males entering traditionally female occupations, perhaps because traditionally female occupations are not as prestigiou s or fina ncially lu crative. I n any event, d espite co ntinu ed disc rimina tion ag ainst w omen in certain occupation s, women m ay feel they have mo re choices of careers than m ales do. While earlier studies ten ded to su ggest that g irls “chose” careers from a more limited menu th an did b oys, mo re recent research has su ggested the opposite (H elwig, 1998 ). There are really two quite separable questions here, and they have often been confused. The first is wh ether stere otypes of ma les are stro nger th an th ose for fem ales. Th e secon d, is wh ether the re is a sense th at men a nd wo men ou ght to beh ave in line w ith stereotypes, a nd if so, w hether wo men are punished more for deviations than men.

6 How ever, there wa s a time w ell within living m emory w here racial stereo types were far m ore prescriptive, in the sense that blacks w ere judged to be margina lly acceptable by whites so lon g as they “knew their place”, that is played out their stereotypic roles without complaint. According to Jackman (1994) and Glick and Fiske (1999b) stereotypes tend to become prescriptive when the stereotyping group has m ore power b ut is also d ependent o n the oth er group. So in the Sou th say 5 0 years ag o, the mo re powerful wh ites were dependent on blacks for menial labor, an d still today wom en may ha ve lower powe r than men, b ut men are depen dent o n them for dom estic serv ices an d sex.

Are Males or Females More Strongly Stereotyped? Evidenc e on wh ether males o r females are

more strongly stereotyped is mixed. Research by H ort, Fagot, & Leinbac h (1990) su ggested that both males and females (but especially females) see a larger difference between male and female traits for males than for females. In other words, males are perceived to be more stereotyped than females. Perceptions may be a bit more nuanced today. However, subjects generally think of males in terms of more and more diverse subtypes (Carpenter, 1994b) which might suggest less stereotyping of the general category of male. Also people are more categorical (using “all” or “none”) in rating females than in rating males (Jackman & Senter, 1980), which would indicate that females are more stereotyped. The evidence therefore is too fragile to support a definitive conclusion.

Are Males or Females More Strongly Disapproved for Cross-Gendered Behavior? There has

been considerable research on the question of whether men and women are disapproved for behavior seen appropriate to the opposite sex. Many studies find that both males and females are disapproved for cross-g endered behav ior (Albrec ht, Bah r, & Ch adw ick, 197 7; Cos trich, Fein stein, K idder, M arecek, & Pascale, 1975; Fagot, 1978; Lindsey & Zakahi, 1996; Rajecki, DeGraaf-Kaser, & Rasmussen, 1992; Rojahn

& Willemsen, 1994; Shaffer & Johnson, 1980). However, studies that find a difference generally show

that ma les are disappro ved mo re for female beh avior tha n the reverse (B erndt & H eller, 1986; Ca rter & McCloskey, 19 83-84; Fagot, 19 77; Feinman , 1974; Lobel, Bemp echat, Gewirtz, Shok en-Topaz, & B ashe, 1993; T ilby & Ka lin, 1980) a lthough there are som e exceptions (M alchon & Penn er, 1981; Y oder & Schleicher, 1996). On the other hand, stereotypes of feminists, who might be thought of as women who are actively seeking to cross or blur traditional gender boundaries, are generally quite negative (Hadd ock & Z anna , 1994; Tw enge & Z ucker, 199 9) sugges ting disapp roval for cro ss-gendered behavio r. Such d isapprova l for cross-gen dered beha vior may be especially stron g by thos e who th emselves a re highly sex-typed (Frable, 1 989; L obel, 19 94). In add ition to nega tive evalua tions for cro ss-sexed beh avior, a va riety of other inferen ces are drawn. For example, people are seen as more likely to be homosexual when they display cross- gendered s tyles (Kite & D eaux, 19 87; Storm s, Stivers, Lam bers, & Hill, 198 1). Male ho mema kers are certainly seen more negatively than females in the same role, and probably to a larger extent than any negative ratings (if any) that females in male roles experience (Rossenwasser, Gonzales, & Adams, 1985). Further, males who violate gender norms receive more personal (internal) causal attributions than do females who violate such norms (Galper & Luck, 1980). However, Jackson & Cash (1985) found the reverse (more disapproval for female cross gendered behavior) for likeability ratings but not for ratings of adjustm ent. In the sp ecial case of a ssertiveness , a stereotypic m ale trait, some s tudies (e.g., Bu tler & Geis, 1990 ; Lao, Upc hurch , Corwin , & Grossn icke, 1975 ; Rudm an, 199 8) find tha t females are disapproved more for assertive behavior than are males, but others find no differences (Gormally, 1982; Solomon, Brehony, Rothblum, & Kelly, 1983). In Chapter 12 we note that boys are probably given less leeway to d eviate from g ender-prescribed behavio rs than g irls, and prob ably adu lt males are m ore disapproved for feminine behavior than females are for masculine behavior, but there are major exceptions d epending on con text and ty pe of behav ior.

Differences in Gender Stereotypes

Surely not everyon e holds exactly the sam e gender stereotypes. Do they v ary from culture to culture, perso n to person ? Unfortu nately su ch ques tions us ually prod uce a glas s-half-full/gla ss-half- empty answer. There are differences, but there are also commonalities.

Cultural Differences: Obv iously there w ill be som e differenc es acro ss cult ures (e.g., B elk, Snell, Holtzman, Hernandez-Sanchez, & Garcia-Falconi, 1989), but there is surprisingly good agreement from

culture to culture on which traits cha racterize males and fem ales. In the extensive cross-cultura l studies conduc ted by Williams an d Best (1982, 19 90), gender stereotypes in an A merican sam ple are correlated quite hig hly with those fro m Au stralian , English , Cana dian a nd N ew Zea land s amples but less highly with Pakistan, Japanese, Italian, and French samples. There is more agreement across cultures on stereotypes for males than for females except for traits relating to agreeableness (Williams, Satterw hite,

& Best , 1999 ). Table 7 .2 gives some examp les of som e natio nal differe nces in gender stereoty pes. Kee p in

mind th at this table lists o nly som e traits on w hich there w as wide c ultural disa greement. H owever,

people in the different countries agreed on many more traits such as men are more rational, obnoxious, opinionated, and ambitious among other traits and that females are more dependent, appreciative, sexy, sentim ental, an d sens itive, aga in am ong o ther traits . Table 7.2: Percentages of People in Various Countries Who Think Men Have More of the Trait (Large Numbers Represent Male Traits and Low Numbers Female). Based on data from Williams and Best

 

(1990)

 
 

Brazil

France

Italy

Japan

Nigeria

Pakistan

US

Blustery

76

93

97

88

43

8

44

Cheerful

25

47

51

31

20

68

9

Conscientious

60

29

57

49

65

43

31

Effeminate

35

61

82

39

9

8

38

Excita ble

47

42

59

42

12

86

9

Friendly

36

75

53

73

28

53

28

Loyal

47

86

81

83

24

18

47

Nagging

72

81

52

34

17

73

2

Pessim istic

42

46

57

31

25

62

75

Poised

76

67

62

39

47

50

16

Prejudiced

39

29

46

34

23

64

77

Snobbish

36

58

77

63

22

91

18

Female-Male Differences: What about differences in stereotypes held by males and females? Surely g iven all th e discu ssion s of gen der politic s in recen t years, th ey mu st disa gree. Inter estingly enough, altho ugh som e differences have been reported (e.g., Smith & M idlarsky, 1985), mo st studies find th at ma les and females have s urprisin gly simila r views on the conten t of gend er stereoty pes (e.g., Der-K arabet ian & S mith, 1 977; Ja ckma n, 199 4; Ros enkran tz, et al., 19 68; W illiams & Best, 19 77); this agreem ent occ urs als o acro ss cult ures (W illiams, D aws, B est, Tilqu in, Wes ley, & Bjerk e, 1979 ). Implicit measures of gender stereotyping (e.g., Rudman, Greenwald, & McGhee, 2001) also support male and female similarities in gender stereotypes. To the extent differences occu r, males of all ages have stron ger stereotypes of females than th e reverse (Belk & Snell, 1986; Hu ston, 1985; Lew in & Trojos, 1987 ), to see more tra its as gen der related (Der-Ka rabetian & Sm ith, 197 7), and to differen tiate mo re stron gly between perceptio ns of m ales an d fema les (Spen ce, Helm reich, & S tapp,, 19 75a). Not surprisingly each gender also tends to evaluate its own gender more positively than the other gender does (e.g., Etaug h, Levine, & Man nella, 1984). Further, on a v ariety of attitudinal measu res about traditional sex roles, equalitarianism, and the like, women are more positive toward freedom and equality for women than are men (Brabeck & Weisgerber, 1989; Gibbons, Stiles, & Shkodriani, 1991; Haw orth, Pov ey, & Clift, 198 6; Jackson , Hodge, & Ingram , 1994; K ing & K ing, 1985 , 1990).

Attitude, Value, and Personality Correlates: There is a substantial m enu of persona lity

correlates of gender stereotypes. A mea sure of Right W ing Autho ritarianism (Altemeyer, 1988) predicts measures of trad itional attitudes towa rd women (Duncan , Peterson, & Winter, 199 7) as well as both negativity of stereotypes and attitudes toward feminist women but not women in general (Haddock & Zanna, 1994). A measure of hostile sexism but not a measure of benevolent sexism predicts negative

stereotyping of wom en (Glick & Fis ke, 1996 ). 7 At least in 19 75 wo men w ho were fem inists had more negative stereo types of men than d id wom en who were not (N ielsen & Do yle, 1975). Bem’s (1981 , 1985 ) gender schem a theo ry sug gests th at peop le who are stron gly sex-ty ped (e.g., relatively mas culine ma les and fem inine females) s hould be prone to p rocess info rmation about o thers in terms of gen der. How ever, research u sing the Bem Sex Role In ventory (B SRI) dev eloped to m easure sex-typing has yielded equivocal results with regard to predictions about its effect on stereotyping and differential evaluation of males and females (Deaux & Kite, 1993; Spence, 1993). There is some evidence that at least for males a m asculine identity as m easured by the B SRI is associated with stronger gend er stereoty pes (Hu dak, 1 993). Other studies have found relationships between measures of traditional gender ideology and gender stereotyping (Tilby & Kalin, 1980) and seeing the self as different from the opposite sex (Ellis & Bentler, 1973). People who score high on the Attitudes Toward Women Scale (Spence & Helmreich, 1978 ), a mea sure of a ttitudes towa rd equa lity betw een the s exes, tend to stereo type mo re (Cota , Reid, & Dion, 19 91; Eag ly & Mlad inic, 1989 ; Innes, Do rmer, & Lu kins, 199 3; Spence, H elmreich, & Sta pp, 1975 b), especially on instrumen tal traits (Spence & Buckn er, 2000). More religious people tend to h ave stronger gender stereotypes as well as more traditional attitudes about appropriate roles for women (Larsen & Long, 1988; Morgan, 1987). Negative attitudes toward women are correlated with right wing authoritarianism, politically conservative attitudes, and acceptance of woman as causing rape (Larsen & Long, 198 8). Lower social class a nd less well educated people have mo re traditional gender attitudes (Canter & Ageton, 1 984; H offman & Klosk a, 1995 ).

Differences Over Time: The research cited in this chapter spans a period from the late 1940s throu gh the present, a nd w e mus t be wa ry of as sum ing tha t results fro m earlier s tudies are still pertinent given the considerable changes in norms, experiences, and education. Available data do suggest that yo unger people hav e weaker gender stereotypes tha n older (Damb rot, Papp, & Wh itmore, 1984) and that gender stereotypes and attitudes have diminished somewhat over the past several years, with ev idence o f strong est cha nge du ring the 1970 s (Har ris & Fires tone, 1 998; H elmreich , Spence , & Gibson, 1982; Mason, Czajka, & Arber, 1976; McBroom, 1987; Petro & Putnam, 1979; Simon & Landis, 1989; Z uo, 199 7). 8 Generally the c hanges have n ot been dra matic (Spen ce & Bu ckner, 200 0; Werner & LaRus sa, 1985), and probably exist mostly at th e level of how strongly m en and w omen are stereotyped as opp osed to the con tent of th e stereoty pes. Wh ile it is possib le that th ese cha nges reflec t chan ges in perceptions, it is als o possible th at they reflect real ch anges in m ale and es pecially female beh aviors (Twen ge, 199 7).

Gender Sub-Types

The categories of male and female are diverse, so much so that it may be difficult to imagine prototypes or exemplars . What is a typical ma le anywa y? Gend er groups m ay be too broad to carry much weight in terms of stereotypes, and obviously for gender as well as other categories most of us have a number of sub-types that arguably carry the burden of stereotyping. Almost all of us have considerable exposure to both genders, a process that should promote sub-typing (Fiske & Stevens, 1993), and certainly our culture has a rich variety of labels that we apply to males and females (Holland & Skinner, 1987 ). Furthermore since it is clear that behav ior varies from situation to s ituation, even

7 This scale will more fully discus sed in Chapter 14 . But briefly for now, hostile sexism reflects hostility to increasing gender equality and the loss of dominance by men. Benevolent sexism is based on perceived difference s betw een men and w omen and a corresp ondin g tende ncy to see trad itional fem ale traits as positive provided they a re exhibited by females. These two m easures are positively correlated but see m to pre dict differen t behav iors (Glick & Fiske, 2 001).

8 An exception to this trend is research by Lewin and Trojas (1987) showing that from 1956 to 1982 there was an increase in the tendency of high school students to agree that men and women should have different in terests, ab ilities, and roles.

cultural idiots will have plenty of exposure to a wide range of behaviors by both genders (Deaux & LaFrance, 1998; Deaux & Major, 1987). There certainly are distinctive stereotypes of different kinds of males and females -- an important question is whether these sub-types come to stand for the whole. So when we think of the traditional female stereotype we are really accessing the stereotype of a mother or hou sewife? P erhaps the ma le stereoty pes presu pposes a male work ing at a tradition ally ma le job.

Eagly’s Social Role Model

There have been two general arguments along these lines. In the most theoretically important Eagly (1987 ) has a rgued that ste reotypes are really s tereotyp es abo ut roles and n ot gend ers. Specific ally she suggests that men and women do differ in their behaviors, on average, but these differences reflect the differing roles that men and women typically occupy in ou r society. For example, wom en are often seen as more n urtura nt an d con cerned with th e care of b abies a nd infa nts. Gen erally wo men p robab ly do perfo rm mo re nurtu ring beh aviors than do m en, but that is b ecaus e wom en are m ore often placed in positions (teacher, nurse) an d roles (motherhoo d) where these beha viors are expected. Conv ersely, men are generally m ore aggress ive and d omineerin g than w omen, a nd aga in this is beca use men are more likely to have jobs where such behavior is encouraged. Both men and women who have more dominant roles actually behav e in more agentic an d less comm unal wa ys than tho se in less dominan t roles (Mosko witz, Suh , & Desau lniers, 1994 ). 9 Generally hig her status positions a re assum ed to carry m ore power and influence, and because women are less likely to occupy such positions, they are seen as less powerful (Conway, Pizzamiglio, & Mount, 1996; Conway & Vartanian, 2000). When women have equal or greater power and status than men they are perceived as being just as agentic as the men in those positions (Eagly & Wood, 1982; Eagly & Steffen, 1984; Geis, Brown, Jennings, & Corrado-Taylor, 1984; Gerber, 1 988; S mored a, 199 5). Eagly recogn izes tha t more is involv ed tha n simp le social p ressure s to beh ave in c ertain w ays in certain roles. By virtue of being placed in d ifferent roles, often from childhood on , males and fema les may develop different skills and abilities, may come to have differing expectations for their own behavior and accomplishm ents, and ma y develop differing beliefs about their own traits and wh at they should do in a given situation. In deed people who have internalized trad itional gender roles tend to feel most co mfortable in situation s that em phasize th ose roles (W ood, Ch ristensen, H ebl, & Roth gerber, 1997 ). When all is said and d one, ho wever, g ender s tereotyp es are larg ely driven by role pre ssures .

Stereotypes May Accurately Reflect Observations: In Chapter 11 we will discuss these ideas

in somewhat more detail. However, for now we want to emphasize four related implications of the Eagly analysis. First, stereotypes may be built in part, perhaps in large part, on accurate observations of how men and women differ, differences that are based more on roles men and women occupy than their biolo gical he ritage (Ea gly & W ood, 1 999).

The Role-Gender Confound: Second, since these stereotypes are really about roles and not about people, it follows that either changes in the behaviors we expect from people in different roles or a change in the distribution of men and women in various roles ought to have direct impact on our stereotypes of males and females. If, for example, we decided to create new and improved business managers who stress interpersonal and caring skills and males remained over-represented in those roles, we would expect to find that men on average would become more communal and that in time stereoty pes of m en wo uld reflect these ch ange. C onve rsely, if we in creased the percen tage of m en in professions such as nursery school teaching and nursing and these professions continued to emphasize

9 Moskowitz and his colleagues also found that communal behaviors were not affected by work roles – females were m ore com mun al than males a cross ro les. Tha t may reflect the fa ct that the wo rk roles d id not differ in their “call” for communal behaviors, but a more intriguing possibility is that communal behaviors are less responsive to situational demands than agentic.

nurturing activities, we would also expect men to be seen as more nurturing. 10 In su pport th ere is evidence that women’s assertiveness has risen as their status has increased (1931-1945, 1968-1993) and decreased during the 1950s w hen wom en had low er status (Tweng e, 2001). Clearly people do see gender roles as decreasing over time and consequently gender stereotypes as diminishing, especially for wom en’s ag entic qu alities (Diek man & Eag ly, 200 0).

Implications for Other Groups: Third, the arg umen ts abou t roles are not res tricted to gend er. Many salient social groups have different roles that affect their behaviors and thus the perceptions that others have of them. We might for example, think about race as another large grouping of people that tends to be differentially assigned to roles. Black s may, for example, be seen a s less smart than w hites because they are more often placed in positions which make little use of their native intelligence and which do no t allow them to develo p their self-c onfide nce in d isplayin g intelligen ce. See Ch apters 3 , 5 and pages 17, 19, 51 of the pres ent cha pter for fu rther dis cuss ion.

Some Sub-Types Stand for the Whole: Fourth, while at som e level we recognize differences among types of women and men, when we are not on our cognitive guards, we may let one sub- category s tand for th e whole. Fo r example, Ried le (1991) sh owed th at ratings o f mothers a s a catego ry were indistinguishable from ratings of mothers not working outside the home but were somewhat dissimilar from ratings of mothers who did work. This would suggest that when people think of moth ers, they s till think in terms o f the trad itional m other w ho do es not h ave ou tside em ploym ent.

Actual Sub-Types

A second approach has been to stress sub-types of males and females. There is no doubt that people can divide the world into smaller and smaller categories, but the important question is when we do so and with what effect. A person would have to be a dope not to recognize that women can be effective h ousew ives, stripp ers, cops , busin esswo men, m others , and a thletes (a nd th ese are n ot mu tually exclusive). Nearly everyone recognizes that men sometimes work, accompany their families to religious services, treat women as sexual objects, coach a Little league team, do household chores, and watch Sund ay aftern oon fo otball fro m a pro ne pos ition on the cou ch, TV remote a t the read y. The q uestion is whether these behaviors are naturally assigned to different subtypes and if so whether they inform our thinking about gender. Given the many differences between types of men and women, do we even use global gender categories that much?

Are Sub-Types Assigned Different Traits? There h ave bee n sever al stud ies that h ave dire ctly examined gend er sub-types. In a widely cited stu dy Clifton, McGra th, and W ick (1976) asked s ubjects to check traits that described bunny, housewife, club woman, career woman, and female athlete. Some traits were used to describe tw o or more of the su btypes (for example, bunn y, club wom an, career woman, and athlete were all described as aggressive), but the majority of the traits were seen as characteristic of only one of the sub-types. England (1988) asked subjects to rate behaviors of different kinds of women in different situations, and as expected there were differences. For example although there w ere only w eak ten dencies to see th e different ty pes of w oma n as d ifferentially m aterna l, professional women were seen as taking financial provider responsibilities more seriously and as being more assertive than housewives, “bunnies” and women in general. Even mothers, itself a sub-type of wom en, can be d ivided into s ub-types w ith married m other, stepm other, divo rced mo thers and never- married mothers differing on several traits (Ganong & Coleman, 1995). A meta-analysis suggests that both marital status and to a lesser extent parental status affect stereotypes of men and women (Ganong, Colema n, & Ma pes, 1990 ). Turning to male sub-types, England (1992) showed that businessman, macho male, family man, and m an in gen eral were rated s omew hat differently a cross a n umber o f personality tra its. How ever,

10 But let’s not go too fast. Eagly and Steffen (1986) found that women who worked part-time lost some of her communal attributes but did not gain much in agency. Similarly part-time male workers lose agency without a compensating gain in communal virtues. Rudman and Glick (1999) point to similar sorts o f problem s with perceived “trad eoffs” b etween comm una l and a gentic q ualities.

there was a high degree of similarity across these catego ries for some traits (assertive) and expected behaviors for som e roles (family responsibilities) suggesting that subjects m ay not strong ly differentiate males at least for expected behaviors. These and other studies show that people do have stereotypes of variou s gend er sub-ty pes, bu t most of the stu dies su ggest th at there is both s ome c omm onality of trait assign ment a cross s ub-typ es as w ell as oth er traits th at differen tiate the ty pes. Obv iously some sub-ty pes of ea ch gen der are ev aluat ed mo re positiv ely than others , but th ere is some ev idence (Von k & Old e-Monn ikhof, 199 8) that peo ple tend to exh ibit more ou t-group bia s towa rd sub-groups o f their own gender to w hich they didn’t belon g than to the oth er gender. On the oth er hand, men who are high on hostile sexism (Glick & Fiske, 1996) were more negative toward women in a non-traditional roles, and those high on the benevolent sexism sub-scale rated the women in the traditional role more positively (Glick, Diebold, Bailey-Werner, & Zhu, 1997), and common experience suggests that so me gender sub types may be seen m ore negatively by both m en and w omen tha n other types.

Are Sub-Types Salient? Are these sub-types meaningful to people? Just because people can genera te sub-t ypes an d asso ciate differe nt featu res with them d oes no t guara ntee tha t they ar e actively used. Some studies (e.g., Deaux, Winton, Crowley, & Lewis, 1985) suggest that gender sub-types may not be especially salient, but other research tends to suggest that they are. For example, Green and Ashm ore (199 8) aske d peop le to desc ribe the pic tures in their hea ds wh en they thou ght ab out fo ur ma le and fo ur fema le sub-ty pes. A co ntent a nalys is revealed cons iderable c onsen sus o n the im ages, a result suggesting som e degree of salience. Certainly descriptions of sub types are affected by exposure to exemplars (Coats & Smith, 1999) In a n ow cla ssic stu dy, No sewo rthy an d Lott (1984 ) gave s ubjects group s of traits differentia lly associated w ith sex object, career woman , housewife, female athlete, and w omen’s libber. Wh en asked to recall these traits, the recall did tend to cluster aroun d these sub-types. Th at is, subjects tended to recall career woman traits followed by, say, female athlete traits, etc. In the cognitive psychology literature this is usually taken as evidence of category salience. However, we have to be careful about what this says about sub-typing. The results show that at least in memory traits such as beautiful, good figure, fashion-consciou s, and popu lar go together and th at traits such as tidy, m aternal, devoted to family, and gentle cluster together. Bu t, of course, there may be m any reason s for this clustering other than gender links. We may note that beautiful people are more popular and fashion-conscious without realizing that such traits are be characteristic of a sub-type of women. Everyone, including males, may also tend to exhibit such correlated features, for example, so such results may say more about the structu re of beh avior a nd tra its than of gend er catego ries.

Empirically Derived Sub-Types: Another research strategy is to have people generate their own sub-categories, usually by asking them to sort different types of men and women into categories that seem to go together. One such study (Six & Eckes, 1991) found three distinct clusters for females:

nontraditional (wom en’s libb er, feminis t, ecolog ist, intellectu al, con fident, ca reer wom an), traditional (busy lizzie, housewife, maternal, housework maniac, secretary, naive, conforming), and sex object (tart, sex b omb , vam p). Clus terings o f traits ratin gs ma tched the perso n clus ters mo derately well. Six and Eckes (1 991) also foun d six distinct types of men u sing the same so rting technology. Th ey were:

philanthropist (philan thropis t, quiet, so fty, gay), socially ac ceptab le (bureaucrat, bourgeois, social climber), career man (career m an, m anag er), playboy (cool, lady-killer, playboy, macho), and pasha (egoist, pa sha, g amble r). Again , trait clus ters ma tched the types reason ably w ell. Holland and Skinner (1987) asked college-aged subjects to sort gender labels; through multidimensional scaling they were able to determine the basic dimensions underlying these sortings. When males rated females the d imension s were: prestige as a sexua l possession , tendency to over- dependency/engulfing, and sexiness. When women rated men the dimensions were: use of power or attract iveness for selfish ends, in effective a nd u nbeara ble, and unu sual s exual a ppetites. Turning to m ale sub-types, Edw ards (1992) fou nd that su bjects generate a num ber of subtypes of men that could be grouped into businessman, loser, blue collar worker, athlete, family man, and ladies’ man. When asked to list traits for each sub-type, the most salient (top 10) for each subtype

show ed alm ost no overlap . When asked to grou p the trait s mos t clearly a ssigned to each sub-ty pe, a clustering analysis showed that the traits did tend to be grouped in ways that represented each of the sub-types. But again, we cannot be sure whether the traits were being grouped in terms of sub-types, linguis tic mea ning, o r some other ext raneo us feat ure. Fu rther, the fa ct that a trait is h ighly ch aracter istic of one s ub-typ e does n ot mea n tha t it is unc harac teristic of a noth er. Eckes (1994a) asked subjects to list traits that corresponded to a large number of male and female sub-types. Females su btypes included ca reer woman, ch ick, feminist, hippy, housewife, intellectual, punk, secretary, vamp, trendy, society woman, and women’s libber. For men some representative s ub-types w ere bum, ca d, career ma n, confiden t type, intellectual, m acho, m anager, radical rocker, trendy, and y uppie. Then each o f the subtypes wa s rated on scales w hich differentiated among the sub-types. 11 Eckes (1996) has also shown that gender sub-types are associated with situations. Subjects were asked to indicate whether the various sub-types would feel comfortable in a range of situations, and clusters of gender types and situations were extracted. For example, typical woman, housewife, and wallflower were all associated with family get together and watching TV whereas a typical man, career man and jock are associated with sports. Interestingly, female sub-types on average were seen as mo re com fortable in a wide r range o f situatio ns tha n were m ale sub -types, ind irectly suppo rting th e idea th at wo men a re less su bject to st ereotype pressu res than are men (See pp. 11, 18, 25)

Gender and Compound Categories: One of the many reasons gender is such an important social category is that it cross-cuts nearly every other social category — the same is arguably true of race and age. No matter what o ther categories we place people into (occu pation, roles, personality, etc.) they will still be male or female. Gender sub-types are really combinations of gender with other categories, what w e have previously ca lled compoun d categories (see Chapter 3). O bviously as w e have reported througho ut this chapter stereotypes of m en and w omen cha nge as we co mbine gender w ith other catego ries suc h as o ccupa tion, an d prom ote thin king in terms o f sub-ty pes. What about compound categories based on combination of the Big Three of age, gender, and race? There is some reason to believe that race affects the ways we view gender categories. A black female is not merely a female who happens to be black, for example. Deaux and Kite (1985) found that while white subjects have similar stereotypes for black men and white men, black women are seen as having more masculine traits than white women and are viewed as being much closer to black men than white women are to white men. Similarly Weitz and Gordon (1992) found relatively little overlap in the stereotypes of females in general (presumably assumed to be white) and black females. Terms most used for females in general included intelligent, materialistic, sensitive, attractive, sophisticated, emotional, and ambitious; for black fem ale the most com mon traits were lou d, talkative, aggressive, intelligent, straightforward, argumentative, and stubborn. 12 Similarly stereotype of older and you nger females differ (Kite, D eaux, & M iele, 1991; Tu rner & Tu rner, 1994 ).

Naive Theories About Gender

We can and do argue about how accurate certain stereotypes are, and to the extent that stereotypes tra ck real differences between g roups, w e may fu rther ask w hy suc h differences o ccur. Wha t theories do we hav e about s uch differen ces? Mo st people ass ume tha t their stereotypes a re accurate in the sense of being based on real differences between groups. Their theories about why these differences occur are thus part and parcel of the stereotyping process. Gender is a particularly appealing focus for such study becau se it is obvious that bo th biological and cu ltural factors produce a ctual gender

11 Interestingly different types of features were associated with different sub-types (Eckes, 1994b). For example, physical features and overt behaviors were more important than traits and attitudes for the bum, but th e reverse was true for social climber. For fema le sub-types, career women was high o n traits and p hysica l appeara nce feat ures an d the h ippy su b-type o n attitu des.

12 Many people have assumed and asserted that black women should be doubly disadvantaged by virtue of race a nd gend er, but empirica l evidence belies th is claim (Sida nius & V eniegas, 20 00).

differences. What do people think accounts for the differences they perceive between males and females? Smith and Russell (1984) as ked children aged 7 , 10, and 15 a bout the cau ses of gender differenc es. Altho ugh b oth bo ys an d girls sw itch from predom inant ly biolog ical to prim arily socialization-based explanations over the ages studied here, at all ages boys employed biological explanations more than did girls. Among college age subjects, socialization and cultural explanations are preferred more than biologica l, and the latter are related to additiona l beliefs that gender differences are hard to eliminate (Martin & Parker, 1995). However, beliefs in biological causation and socialization were uncorrelated, and both predicted perceived sex differences in appearance and personality whereas socialization beliefs were related to perceived differences in occu pation and b iological beliefs to perceived differences in interests. In a large national survey done in 1975, Jackman (1994) reported that 28% of men and 21% of women think that sex differences are genetic, and that 43% of men and 52% of wom en asc ribe gend er differenc es to ho me up bringin g.

Race and Ethnicity

Classically muc h of the research in the stereotype area has focused on stereotypes of mino rity groups — blacks, Hispanics, Jews, Asians, etc. At this point we do not need any elaborate explanation for why this should be – such stereotypes have justified subtle as well as quite overt discrimination (Stephan & Rose nfield, 1982 ).

The Reality of Race and Ethnicity

We think we know what ethnic and racial groups are, but definitions of racial and ethnic groups are heavily culturally conditioned, arguably to the point of arbitrariness. If we think of race as based on strongly differentiated genetic differences amon g groups, then w e are in for some hard tim es intellectually and scientifically. It is true that there are some genetic traits that differ somewhat from racial group to racial group (although typically with greater within group variability than between), but physical a ppearanc e is not genera lly one of them . On av erage mem bers of the so -called Negro race are darker skinned tha n those of the Ca ucasian, bu t people who live in India a re classified as Cauca sian yet are often much darker skinned tha n many African-American s. So called Negroid featu res (flattened noses, thick lips, kinky hair) certainly appear in some African Americans but far from all. These days we spea k of Afric an-A merica ns to em phas ize the A frican o rigins o f some Americ ans, b ut Afric a itself contains the widest variations of skin color, hair and eye color, height, and facial features of any continent (Ko hn, 1995). Am ong indigeno us Africans there are blon ds and redh eads as well as tho se with black hair; some Africans have the flattened noses, but others have chiseled features. 13 Of course, it might be argued that many of those we call African American have both Caucasian and Negro ancestors, and that is true; about 30 % of current African A mericans hav e at least one white father so mewh ere in their a ncestry (***REF ERE NCE **). But it is unclea r wha t identifica tion pro blem, if any, that solves. Im agine if you will a man whom we know to be 75% C aucasian and 25% Negro and yet whose predominant features are “Negroid” versus the person whose percentages are reversed and who looks more “white”. 14 And what about a situation where a dark-skinned black woman whose cultural backg roun d seem s more white th an bla ck vers us the lighter sk inned wom an w hose w hole de mean or is “black and proud of it”. Exactly ho w muc h of one kind o f “blood” or an other does one h ave to have to

13 Recently D NA testin g has su pported the c laims of the X people in S outh A frica that they are descendants of Israeli Jews even though they seem to be indistinguishable from other black Africans on the bas is of cas ual ap pearan ce.

14 And w e will not even get into issu es of people w hose herita ge includes mixtures o f three or mo re racial groups. For exam ple, Hispanics, traditionally cons idered an ethnic grou p, have ancesto rs classified as black, Cau casians, Asian , and Indian as well as various mixtures of the abov e .

be class ified one way o r the oth er? Do es cultu ral bac kgrou nd m atter at a ll? 15 In this country our historical legacy has been the “one-drop” rule (Davis, 1991). Anyone with any identifiable African ancestry has tended to be classified as black both legally (mostly in Southern states) and informally. 16 There are few physical features, and even fewer (if any) psychological features that are unique to one or another of the putative races (Corcos, 1997). Even for biological factors such as blood types and various enzymes, diversity within racial groups is 8-10 times higher than diversity between groups (Zuckerm an, 199 0). 17 Furtherm ore, classification on the ba sis of variou s biologica l and gen etic markers often leads to classificatio ns quite differen t from the o nes we info rmally us e. In som e cases N egroes are actually q uite close to C aucas ians (Jones , 1997). It is n ot clear that hair type or sk in color is m ore import ant th an th ese less o bviou s but a lso less d iscrimin ating fea tures. Matters are even m ore complex wh en we think ab out ethnicity. Is a ma n named Michael Johnson who grew up in his moth er’s Mexican-Am erican home H ispanic? Wh at about M aria Gonza lez who has blond hair, never heard Spanish spoken as a child, and only recently has begun to think about her fifth generation Mexican heritage? Ethnicity may refer to cultural differences, ethnic identity, or distinctive experiences associated with treatment by others (Phinney, 1996), and many people are not clear abou t distinction s between race, ethnicity, a nd cultu re (Betencou rt & Lopez , 1993). In fact, historically people made arbitrary distinctions about race almost any time they did not like another group. For example, not only German Nazis but Americans have often referred to Jews as a separate race, and at th e turn of the century in A merica Italians were frequently seen as a non-w hite race; the English often talked of the Irish as being a distinct race (Hirschfeld, 1996). It will not do blithely to suggest that earlier generations were deluded and that we modern folks have finally got the

15 In addition to the issues raised by the examples just given, it is important to note that because of recent immigration, Africans with no slave ancestors are a non-trivial portion of the group we classify as African-American. Also although the majority of African-Americans are descendants of American slaves, man y also h ave an cestors who were sla ves in v ariou s Carib bean is lands , a quite d ifferent cu ltural lega cy.

16 As one example Virginia’s 1924 Racial Integrity Act defined a white person as one “who has no trace whatsoever of any blood other than Caucasian, but persons who have one sixteenth or less of the blood of the Am erican I ndian and n o othe r non -Cau casian blood shall be deemed to be w hite perso ns.” (http://w ww.m elungeon s.org/pleck er.htm). By virtue o f this law w hites and non-w hites were forbidd en to m arry, an d this p rovisio n of the law w as ov erturne d by th e Suprem e Cou rt only a s recently as 1967 (Loving v. Virginia). Meanwhile the infamous Walter A. Plecker, chief of Virginia’s Bureau of Statistics, went to great lengths to insure that no interracial marriages took place. In 1943 he issued a bulletin giving family names of people likely to have racial mixtures and who were trying to pass for white. Local agencies were warned to be wary of Powells in Albermale Co, Cashs in Rockbridge Co., etc. The main target was an interesting group of people called Mulungeons who have Indian, Caucasian, and Negro ances try.

17 Some argue that race be abandoned in favor of breeding populations. Yes, there generally is far more breeding within than between putative races, but inter-breeding also varies by geography and a host of other factors so that meaningful breeding populations may be much smaller than racial groups. If we allow inter-breeding to be a criterion for race, then we may have to admit Jews and Mexican- Americans (to name just two groups) as races given the considerable intra-marriage among those groups. Of co urse, Jew s may marry within their grou p less tha n blac ks, but that o nly raise s the u nans werab le question of much intra-group breeding must take place for the group to be counted as a race. National groups such as Icelander and religious groups such as American and Canadian Hutterites have extremely high rates of interm arriage, yet we d o not co nsider them separate rac es (Koh n, 1995 ). Furthermore, at a point when evolution was supposedly differentiating the races , breeding populations in Africa were qu ite sma ll.

distinctions right. Whether one deals with cultural differences, physical appearance, or intra-group marriage it is hard to find a clear principle that distinguishes race from ethnicity or one race from another (Corco s, 1997; Dav is, 1991; Hirschfeld, 199 6; Kohn, 19 95; Stephan & Stephan, 200 0; Yee, Fairchild, W eizman n & W yatt, 199 3). 18 It is not clear, then, what race and ethnicity ought to mean, and many au thors (e.g., Allen & Adam s, 1992; Hirschfeld, 19 96; Jones, 1983 ; Kohn, 199 5) have deplored its vagueness when us ed by social scientists, let alone less well-informed folks. At a minimum it is not a coherent w ay to clas sify people. Rac e is a social co nstructio n (Bank s & Eberh ardt, 199 8; Jones, 19 97). Despite the fact that the con cepts of race and ethn icity are muddled, mo st Americans th ink they know what races is and the racial stereotypes that go with them. 19 Yet, despite the salience of such stereotypes in our national debate about race issues, there is comparatively little contemporary research on stereotypes about various ethnic groups. In part this is because the emphasis in modern stereotype research has shifted to processing rather than content. But in larger part, I suspect, it reflects the fact that it is often extremely hard to get college students to admit to stereotypes about people from other racial or ethnic groups. Th e fact that they hav e such stereotypes is beyon d dispute as stu dies which ha ve used indirect and subtle measures have shown (e.g., Devine, 1989; Fazio, Jackson, Dunton, & Williams, 1995; Gaertn er & Mc Lau ghlin, 1 983; G reenwa ld, McG hee, & S chw artz, 19 98; Siga ll & Pag e, 1971 ).

Cues for Group Membership

As with gender and age it seems vaguely pedantic to ask how we identify the racial membership of individuals. After all, don’t people simply look African-American or Asian-American? Obviou sly skin color and fa cial features are major cues for racial iden tification, but as we ha ve been arguing they are far from perfect. Some first and last names are fairly diagnostic. Vocal qualities and accents often differentiate. However, except for work on identification of Jews reviewed in Chapter 7, there have been no systematic studies done on how people determine racial or ethnic group memb ership, per haps becau se it seem s so ob vious . One interesting question , however, which we have raised b efore (See Chapter 3) is whether group mem bership is considered all-or-non e or graded, and if the latter wh at cues determine the d egree of group membership. Can someon e be very black or only somewhat black, a little or a lot Jewish? Is Abe Rosenstein who “looks Jewish” seen as more Jewish than Jon Miller who does not? Is the very dark- complected black w oman n amed La toy seen as mo re black than her lighter cou nterpart named R osanne? We make graded distinctions sometimes, but informal observation suggests that it is often made on the basis of whether people exhibit relevant stereotypic traits. A woman who exhibits traits that are part of the Jewish mother stereotype may be seen as very Jewish, whereas the businessman who does not fit the stereotype of the Jewish merchant may not be seen as very Jewish at all. “Well he’s Jewish, but he’s not really Jewish, if you know what I mean.” Certainly with the African-American community, and I suspe ct with in the w hite as w ell, some b lacks a re seen to embra ce their ra cial herita ge mo re stron gly than others and th us to b e “mo re black ”.

18 In presenting this material to adult students, an older man, chuckled and said something along the lines tha t I mus t be letting m y politica l correctn ess do my perc eiving fo r me bec ause h e sure co uld distinguish blacks from whites. Well, I can too, but I responded that I am also adept at distinguishing Mexican Americans in the Southwest, those of Nordic descent in the upper Midwest, and Vietnamese from Japanese Americans in the West (all with admittedly frequent errors) although none of these distinc tions in volves a race b y any conv ention al definit ion.

19 Americans are not uniquely confused about such matters, of course. However, one difference between victims of prejudice in the U .S. and Western E urope is that mino rity groups in the latter tend to be defined on the basis of nationality (e.g, Turks in Germany and the Netherlands, West Indians and Pakistanis in En gland, and N orth Africans in Fran ce). If anything prejudice agains t these groups is even stronger th an tha t exhibited by w hite America ns tow ard African -American s (Pettigrew, 19 98a).

There has been little systematic research that addresses these questions. In early research by Secord (1959; Secord, Bevan and Katz,1956) white subjects rated photos labeled as Negro or white which varied in “Negroidness”; the appearance variable had no effect on the tendency to assign stereotype traits to the pictures but label did. This w ould sugg est that physical features do not affect tendencies to stereotype. However, there is good evidence that skin color and tone affect evaluations of blacks among other b lacks b oth in t he U.S. (B reland , 1998 ; Russ ell, Wilson , & Ha ll, 1992 ) and th e Dom inican Repu blic (Sidanius, Pena, & Sawyer, 2001). Within the black community historically lighter skin has been seen as more prestigious, and lighter skinned blacks do have considerable advantages in the larger community. Several surveys ha ve found th at light skinned blacks have higher soc io-economic statu s although often skin tone makes a bigger difference for females than males (Edwards, 1973; Keith & Herring, 1991; Seltzer & Smith , 1991 ; Udry, B aum an, & C hase, 1 971). Both blacks and whites assign more stereotypic traits to dark-skinned blacks (Maddox & Gray, 2002), and at least for white perceivers black faces w ith more prototypic African features lead to strong er auto matic a ctivatio n of ne gative a ffect tha n do les s proto typic fac es (Blair, Ju dd, Sa dler, & Jenkins , 2002 ). Clearly s kin colo r does a ffect trait ra tings o f blacks by blac ks (An derson & Cro mwell, 1977; Bayton & Muldrow, 1968; Marks, 1943), and some studies (e.g., Bond & Cash, 1992; Marks, 1943) but not all (Coard , Breland, & Rask in, 2001; Ham m, Williams, & Da lhouse, 1973 ) find that blacks prefer lighter skin. Th ere is also som e evidence th at wherea s whites ev aluate da rk-skinned blacks m ore unfavorably, blacks actually evaluate them more favorably (Kennedy, 1993) possibly because of resentment over the privileges acco rded lighter skinned people. Oth er appearance and behavioral cues also m atter. Th e gende r research of Dea ux an d Lew is (198 4) – see pp . 11, 18, 25 showed that behavior and appearance are part of gender stereotypes, and surely the same is true for other groups. Thus we should be more likely to apply the black stereotype to a young black male who listens to rap music and wears major g old ch ains o r the Jew ish stereo type to a Jewish male w ho w ears a y armu lke.

African-American Stereotypes

The Princeton Trilogy

It might be well to start with th e path-breaking research o f Katz and Braly (1933) together w ith the follow-ups by Gilbert (1951) and Karlins, Coffman, and Walters (1969). Table 7.3 gives the most frequently checked traits for Negroes in the three samples. Other studies (e.g., Hartsough & Fontana, 1970 ) have a lso ma de histo rical com parison s with comp arable re sults.

Table 7.3: Ten most fre quen tly selected traits (perce ntage of subjects listing) for Ne gro in Ka tz-Braly (1933), G ilbert (195 1), and K arlins, et al. (19 69).

Negroes

 
 

1933

1951

1969

Superstitious

84

41

13

Lazy

75

31

26

Happy-go-lucky

38

17

27

Ignorant

38

24

11

Musical

26

33

47

Ostentatious

26

11

25

Very Religious

24

17

08

Stupid

22

10

04

Physically Dirty

17

--

03

Naive

14

--

04

Sloven ly

13

--

05

Unrelia ble

12

--

06

Pleasure Loving

--

19

29

Sensitive

--

--

17

Gregarious

--

--

17

Talkative

--

--

14

Imitative

--

--

13

For those who are interested in issues of change, there is both good news and bad. On the bad side even in 1967 sizeable percentages of people were willing to check certain traits as characteristic of blacks. While the percentages generally went down from 1933 to 1951, they seem to have rebounded by 1967. O n the oth er hand , there is some g ood n ews beca use ma ny of the n ewer traits are relativ ely more positive than the older. Traits such as stupid, physically dirty, and unreliable have been replaced by traits such as sensitive, gregarious, and talkative. Superstitious has gone way down, but musical has come up. O ther stu dies tha t have assess ed cha nges in stereoty pes ov er time (e.g., C lark & P earson , 1982 ; Gord on, 19 86; H artsou gh & F onta na, 19 70) ha ve gene rally con cluded that th ere has b een a d ecline in negativ e stereoty pes for bla cks ov er time w ith perha ps a bit o f leveling o ff or increa se in the 1 980s .

More Recent Data

Devine and Elliot (1995) have been critical of the Princeton trilogy for several reasons. In the first place, subjects were asked to provide traits they th ought w ent with variou s groups, but a b etter measure might have been to ask which traits subjects thought were part of the general stereotype. As Devin e (1989 ) has sh own subject s may have g ood k now ledge of c ultura l stereotyp es with out n ecessa rily agreeing with them personally. Another criticism is that the three studies used the same traits for

comparability reasons despite the obvious possibility that current racial stereotypes may include features (e.g., violen t) that w ere not g iven to the earlier s ubjects . In a more recent study at the University of Wisconsin Devine and Elliot (1995) did find that while many of the original Katz-Bra ly traits such as su perstitious, happy-go-luck, osten tatious, naive, and materialistic had essentially disappeared from white’s stereotypes of blacks, other traits such as athletic, rhythmic, low in intelligence, poor, criminal, and loud were endorsed by at least a third of the subjects. These newer traits hardly give rise to optimism about the nature of whites’ stereotypes of African-Americans. On the other hand, Jackson, Hodge, Gerard, Ingram, Ervin and Sheppard (1996) found a gen eral absence of chara cter traits, positive or negative; their subjects tended to report traits such as angry and noisy that reflected a perception that blacks are disaffected from American society. In free descrip tions o f blacks there is a m ixture of p ositive a nd ne gative fea tures (Ja ckson , Lewa ndow ski, Ingram, & Hodge, 1997); for example black males were described as athletic, fun, easy to talk to, charm ing as w ell as vio lent, an gry an d resen tful. Niemann, Jennings, Rozelle, Baxter, and Sullivan (1994) asked students at a large urban, commuter university to list features that they thought went with various groups. Unlike many previous studies they asked for these traits to be given separately for males and females in these groups. Also they used a free-response format where subjects were asked to list traits rather than to select traits from an experimenter-provided list. Rankings for African American males and females are given in Table 7.4. As will be readily apparent, a number of features listed as physical characteristics, and of those that might be termed psyc hological there is a mixture of the po sitive and negative. Table 7.4: Ranking of traits given for African American males and females by 259 college students. From N ieman n, et al (199 4).

 

African American

 

Male

Fema le

Athletic

1

4

Anta gonis tic

2

3

Dark S kin

3

2

Muscular

4

--

Criminal

5

--

Speak Loud ly

6

1

Tall

7

--

Intelligent

8

8

Unm anne rly

9

6

Pleasant

10

5

Lower Class

11

10

Ambitionless

12

12

Non-College

13

--

Racist

14

--

Socia ble

15

7

Attractive

--

9

Egotistical

--

11

Caring

--

13

Humorous

--

14

Honest

--

15

Other studies have also shown a mixed picture on stereotypes of African-Americans. Plous and William s (199 5) report d ata from a pub lic opinio n surv ey sho wing t hat w hites are seen as superio r in artistic a bility an d abs tract th inking wherea s black s are seen as su perior in a thletic ab ility and rhythm ic ability. Almost half of the respondents felt that there was at least one difference between blacks and whites in terms of physical features; 31% said that white skin was thinner than black, 14% felt that whites were more sensitive to physical pain, and 24% thought that blacks have longer arms than whites. Interestingly enough these differences were more strongly en dorsed in a black than in a w hite sample. In national survey data presented by Bobo and Kluegel (1997) over 50% thought that blacks were prone to violence, about 30% thought they were unintelligent; less than 20% endorsed hard-working as a characteristic feature and o ver half said that blacks preferred to live off welfare. In another study (W eitz & Gordon, 1993) black women were seen as loud, talkative, aggressive, intelligent, straightforward, argum entative, stu bborn, qu ick-tempered, bitc hy, and having too ma ny children by at least 1 0% of a sample of college students (predominantly white) compared to traits such as intelligent, materialistic, sensitive, attractive, sophisticated, emotional, and ambitious for white female stimulus persons. Although stereotypes held by whites about blacks are presently somewhat more positive than formerly, and certainly have a mixture of both positive and negative features, the over all picture is not one that suggests a fast track to economic success. Indeed ratings of successful business managers match ratings of whites much more closely than ratings of blacks (Tomkiewicz, Brenner, & Adeyemi-Bello, 1998). To be su re negative features such as shiftless, lazy, and stup id have dropped off the primary list, but traits such as loud, violence-prone, and unmannerly which have replaced them may not be much of an improvement at least as features conducive to getting meaningful and high paying jobs.

Sub-Types for African-Americans

Given the interes t in gend er sub-ty pes, it is su rprisingly that th ere has b een relativ ely little interest in assessing the sub-types of various ethnic groups. Identifying racial sub-types is also importan t given the d iversity of visible bla ck exempla rs such as Bill Cosb y, Oprah Winfrey, O .J. Simps on, an d Den nis Ro dma n. Wh ile black m ales ma y be iden tified with crime, th ere are als o high ly visible black athletes, a much more positive type (Sailes, 1998b). Stereotypes based on these “images” are likely to be quite different. The most complete study for race sub-typing was reported by Devine and Bak er (1991). They asked subjects to list features for blacks, black ath lete, businessman bla ck, ghetto black, militant black, Oreo co okie, streetwise black, Uncle Tom , and welfare black. The featu res varied along three ma jor dimen sions : good -bad (e.g ., hostile a nd po or vs. in telligent an d am bitious ), athletic (athletic, ostentatious vs. upward and jobless) and unique features. On the first (evaluative) dimension, athlete and bus inessman w ere distinguished from a ll other groups, and o n the second (athletic) athlete and blacks in general were different from the other groups. Generally then, subjects did not distinguish between streetwise, ghetto and welfare blacks. They were all seen as hostile, poor, unintelligent, and as having negative personality traits. Black athletes were seen as unintelligent, athletic and ambitious and black b usines smen as well-d ressed, s ucces sful, am bitious and u pward . Wha t abou t blacks in genera l? To some extent they shared features of the street and the athlete. Like the former they were seen as hostile, poor, unintelligent, and jobless, but like the latter they were seen as athletic. Blacks in general were qu ite distinc t from th e positiv e black b usines sman stereoty pe.

African-American Stereotypes of African-Americans and Whites

The majority of stud ies in this area have emplo yed white subjects rating m embers of minority group s (Shelto n, 200 0). This results fro m the im plicit stereo type of b lacks a s victim s, a view that is somew hat con descend ing and certainly limiting . Moreov er, even thou gh wh ites generally ha ve more power than blacks, progress toward racial harmony will require understanding the perspective of blacks as well as w hites. However, two immediate question s occur. First, do mem bers of minority groups share the stereotypes assigned to them by white subjects? Second, what sorts of stereotypes do members of m inority groups (and whites) have ab out white people? Jam es Bayton an d his colleagues initiated research on these questions. Using samples from the 1930s and 1940s they reported that blacks and whites had highly similar stereotypes of blacks (Bayton, 1941; Bayton & Byoune, 1947). For example, black and white subjects 20 selected traits such as musical, very religious, superstitious, happy- go-lucky, and lou d to describe Negroes. O n the other han d, traits such as igno rant, stupid, naive, slovenly, physically dirty, and ostentatious, that were part of the white stereotype of blacks were not prominent in blacks’ stereotypes of blacks, and blacks assigned traits such as progressive and ambitious to themselves that w hites did not. 21 Other, older, studies (e.g., Maykovich, 1972; Meenes, 1943) also confirm that blacks and whites tend to have similar stereotypes of blacks. 22 Blacks and whites also hav e stereotypes of whites, and th e Bayton da ta again sug gest that both groups share common stereotypes. Whites are seen as industrious, progressive, and sportsmanlike by whites and blacks, and whites add aggressive and straight-forward while blacks add conceited and sophistica ted (Bayto n, 1941 ; Bayton & Byou ne, 1947 ). These pioneering studies were conducted many years ago, and needless to say there may be less racial consensus today. In fact, some more recent studies in this area, suggest more striking differences, and generally each group, but especially blacks, rates positive traits as more characteristic of its own group (e.g., Brigham, 1974; Clark, 1985; Clark & Pearson, 1982; Hudson & Hines-Hudson, 1999; Jackman, 1994). For example, Allen (1996) found that whereas corrupt, independent, funny, friendly, and po or were us ed by both whites an d blacks to describe blac ks, the black sample w as mu ch mo re likely to use traits such as smart, strong, oppressed, beautiful, intelligent to describe their own group whereas the white sample was more likely to use athletic, humorous, loud, mean, moody, obnoxious, and a rrogan t. As is ap parent fr om th is listing b lacks h ad a m ore pos itive stereo type of b lacks th an did the whites. In considering stereotypes of whites the two groups agreed on incentive, smart, greedy, educated, and rich but whites also used competitive, lazy, intelligent, independent, arrogant and friendly whereas blacks were more inclined to use prejudiced, corrupt, mean and selfish. Again in- group stereotypes were the m ore positive. Other data have suggested stronger consensus. In a content analysis of essays, Monteith and Spicer (2000) found that whites and blacks used similar positive terms to describe blacks, but the two

20 The data for white su bjects cam e from Ka tz and B raly (1933 ).

21 One m ust be carefu l, however, in assum ing that stereo types of on e group by two oth er groups a re identical because the sa me terms are used (Steph an & Ro senfield, 1982). For example, in the Ba yton data blacks see both w hites and blacks a s intelligent, but in their stereotypes of whites this is combin ed with sly and deceitful wh ich gives intelligence a more sinister cast in the w hite stereotype.

22 It is not uncommon for members of majority and minority groups to share the same stereotypes of the minority group (Sidanius & Pratto, 1999). For example, Australian Aboriginal people have as negative a stereotype of th eir own gro ups as d o white A ustralian s (Majoriba nks & Jo rdan, 19 86). Hispanic-Americans and Anglo-Americans generally agree on the traits ascribed to each group although in both cases self-stereotypes are more positive than the stereotypes of the other group (Triandis, Lisansky, Setiadi, Chang, Marìn, & Betancourt, 1982). Sarnoff (1951) and Engel, O’Shea, Fischl, and Cummins (1958) report that Jews and non-Jews share many of the same stereotypes of Jews.

groups differed in the nature of negative information. Whites used themes related to modern racism whereas black respondents discussed black reactions to racism. Judd, Park, Ryan, Bauer, and Kraus (1995) report that both white 23 and black subjects report more positive stereotypes of blacks than of whites although this was true to a larger extent for the black subjects. In a particularly careful study, Ryan (1996) had blacks and whites rate the percentage of each group that had various stereotype features. These estimates cou ld be compared w ith the actual percentages o f each group w ho claimed to have the relevant features. Generally both groups over-estimated the percentage of respondents who possessed va rious features, and th is was true to a larger extent for black s ubjects. Blacks over-estimated the prev alence o f features in their o wn g roups as mu ch as they did for the w hite grou ps. Krueger (1996) also reported substantial agreement among the stereotypes of blacks held by white and black subjects. Among the traits assigned by both groups to blacks were athletic, family- oriented, hard-working and musical. Blacks saw blacks as more aggressive, ambitious, friendly, intelligent, prone to violence, an d practica l (among other traits) w hereas w hites saw blacks as more self- confiden t. There wa s greater disa greement o n stereotypes of whites, w ith blacks s eeing wh ites as mo re aggressive, arrogant, intelligent, and self-confiden t than wh ites saw themselves. In th is study subjects were also asked to indicate the stereotype that they thought other people held, what is usually called a cultural stereotype. For both blacks and whites there was a positive correlation between personal and cultu ral stereo types.

Can Blacks Predict Whites’ Stereotypes of Them?

One interesting and potentially important question is whether blacks and whites have a clear understan ding of the stereotypes the oth er group has of th em. Sigelman an d Tuch (19 97) provide data from a large na tional s ample o n blac ks’ perce ptions of wh ites’ beliefs. O ver 60% of the bla ck sam ple agreed tha t whites tho ught th at blacks a re more likely to co mmit vio lent crimes, are b etter athletes, are less intelligent, would rather live off welfare than w ork, have low m oral standard s, are more likely to abuse d rugs an d alcoh ol, are alwa ys whin ing abou t racism, are la zy, hav e no self-discipline a nd are religious . Subs tantia l percenta ges of w hites do , in fact, en dorse m any o f these sta tement s. For exa mple, 59% of w hites said that blacks preferred to live off welfare, 54% that they were violent, 47% that they were lazy, and 31 % that they w ere unintelligent. Krueg er (1996 ) asked black a nd w hite su bjects to report th eir person al stereot ypes, th eir estimates of cultural stereotypes, an d their estimates of the responses o f the other racial group. Wh ite subjects had high correlations between their personal stereotypes about blacks and their estimates of what blacks wou ld rate suggesting that they were projecting their own beliefs onto the out-group. Howev er, the corresponding correlation for black subjects between p ersonal stereotypes and estimates of what whites would rate for whites was near 0. Both whites and blacks under-estimated the favorability of the other group’s stereotypes of them, and both groups also thought that the cultural stereotype was mo re negative than it actua lly was. Generally then black s seem to be reason ably accurate abou t their perceptions of white’s s tereotypes alth ough inaccu rate enou gh to prod uce poten tial mischief.

Jewish Stereotypes

While much of the work on stereotypes of minority groups has naturally focused on African- Americ ans, th ere are als o data on stere otypes of othe r mino rity grou ps. The most in tensive ly stud ied is the Jewish-American group. There are three larger clusters of traits that are part of the Jewish stereotype (Wuthnow, 1982). First, Jews are seen as being powerful and manipulative. Second, they are accused of having divided loyalties between the United States and Israel. A third set of traits concerns Jewish materialistic values, aggressiveness and clannishness. In an early study, Jews were seen to differ from other A merica ns in b eing m ore clan nish, lo ving m oney, d ishon est, agg ressive, in dividu alistic, rad ical, and goo d businessm an (Caha lan & Trager, 194 9). Ehrlich (1962b) fou nd that ov er 50% endo rsed stereotypes o f Jews as stick ing togeth er in busines s, preventing others from having a fair chan ce, over-

23 However, these studies were done with college students. More representative national surveys clearly show that wh ites have m ore negativ e stereotypes o f blacks tha n of wh ites (Bobo & Kluegel, 19 97).

aggressiveness, never being c ontent, trying to get the best jobs, and preferring luxurious, extravagan t, sensual ways of living, having a high regard for property, etc. In a large study of junior high and high school stud ents, Glock, et al. (1975) found that at least 50% o f the students endo rsed the following traits as characteristic of Jews: intelligent, good citizens, greedy, civil rightest, and religious, with substantial numbers also endorsing such traits as conceited, vain, selfish, and bossy. While only small minorities of people currently endorse these traits (Rosenfield, 1982; Wuthnow, 1982), they are part of the cultural lands cape. A nti-Sem itism an d Jewis h stereo types h ave de clined o ver the p ast few years, a lthou gh it is unclea r how muc h of this represent s real ch ange a nd ho w mu ch co hort effec ts. There are also questions about how positive the Jewish stereotype is. While many of the traditiona l features of the s tereotype are clea rly negative (e.g., clan nish, ma terialistic, overly am bitious), others are quite positive (intelligent, family oriented, generous, am bitious). Generally there has been more agreement for the positive than for the negative stereotypes (Wuthnow, 1982; Wilson, 1996b), but this may be less favorable than it seems. Wilson (1996b) argues that the underlying psychology of the benign stereotypes is subtly anti-Semitic. For example, in a large national sample those subjects who endorsed malevolent stereotypes about Jews were, not surprisingly, more likely to endorse negative stereoty pes abo ut blac ks, but those w ho en dorsed the pos itive stereo types o f Jews w ere also m ore likely to report black stereotypes. In addition those who hold benign stereotypes are not less likely to endorse negative ones. This suggests that there is a general tendency to hold stereotypes and that positive stereoty pes of Jew s are as muc h sub ject to this as neg ative.

Hispanic Stereotypes

The H ispanic or Latin o com mun ity in the U nited St ates is a ctually quite div erse alth ough it is unlikely that most Americans have distinct stereotypes for each group. Historically, the largest group, concentrated in the Southwest, has been people who have their origins in Mexico. 24 In Eastern cities, Puerto Ricans are more comm on, and in the Southeast those of Cu ban ancestry are predominant. In recent years, emigrants from other areas of Central and South America as well as the Carribean Islands have diversified the Spa nish s peakin g com mun ity in the U nited St ates eve n mo re. Most studies have focused on Mexican-Americans. Niemann, Jennings, Rozelle, Baxter, and Sullivan (1994) found the following traits most commonly listed for male and female Mexican- Americans. Tab le 7.5. R ankin gs of tra its repo rted fo r male and fe male Mex ican-A meric ans (F rom N iema nn, et a l.,

1994).

 

Males

Females

Lower Class

1

 

Hard W orker

2

 

Anta gonis tic

3

15

Dark S kin

4

4

Non-College

5

11

Pleasant

6

3

Dark H air

7

1

Ambitionless

8

12

24 Mexicans themselves are a diverse group. Some are pure descendants of various native American groups (ultimately from Asia), while others also have Spanish, other European, and Asian ancestors.

Family Oriented

9

7

Short

10

14

Criminal

11

 

Poorly Groom ed

12

 

Unm anne rly

13

 

Intelligent

14

9

Alcohol User

15

 

Attractive

 

2

Overweight

 

5

Baby M akers

 

6

Caring

 

8

Socia ble

 

10

Passive

 

13

Asian-Americans

Again, this is a group of considerable diversity, genetically, and especially culturally. For example, Japanese and Chinese cultures are quite different 25 , and, in fact, those two countries hav e a long history of mutual antagonism. In more recent years immigrants from Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos to name just four countries have diversified Asian-American culture even more. Nonetheless, becau se it is likely th at mo st Am ericans cann ot disc rimina te these g roups visua lly let alon e behav iorally and cu lturally, mos t research h as simply u sed the term Asian-A merican. A lthough Asian-A mericans are often called the mod el minority, white American s have am bivalent attitudes tow ard them, seeing them as intelligent and hard-working but also as unassimilated and financially aggressive (Ho & Jackson, 2001), not unlike the classic Jewish stereotype. Research by Niemann, et al. (1994) provides one recent listing on commonly ascribed Asian-American traits. Tab le 8.6 R ankin gs of tra its assig ned to Asian s-Am erican s (Data from N iema nn, et a l., 1994 ).

 

Male

Fema le

Intelligent

1

1

Short

2

4

Achievemen t-oriented

3

7

Speak Softly

4

2

Hard W orker

5

12

Pleasant

6

3

25 Lumping Chinese-Americans and Japanese-Americans into one group makes about as much sense as gro uping African -Americ ans a nd M exican -Americ ans.

Dark H air

7

10

Good Student

8

14

Sma ll Build

9

6

Caring

10

8

Slender

11

11

Family Oriented

12

 

Upper Class

13

 

Shy

14

9

Speak with accent

15

 

Attractive

 

5

Passive

 

13

Well Mann ered

 

15

Change Over Time

A fair amount of social science research has been devoted to documenting changes in prejudice (and to some extent) stereotypes over time. Most studies (e.g., Bobo & Kluegel, 1997; Firebaugh & Davis, 1988; Gordon, 1986; Martire & Clark, 1982; Maykovich, 1971; Ransford & Palisi, 1992; Schuman, Steeh, Bobo, & K rysan, 1997 ; Smith, 1993) find tha t prejudice and stereotypic beliefs have declined ra ther steadily over the last 40 or 50 years. 26 There has been some debate about the nature of those changes. One po ssibility is that peo ple (or at least so me people) ch ange their ra cial attitudes over time, an d there is some evidence that this has occurred (Firebaugh & Davis, 1988; Schuman, et al, 1997). Stereotypes of blacks have become more favorable between 1972 and 1988, but most of that improvement has come with mid dle-aged su bjects sugg esting that they hav e chang ed over tim e (Dowd en & Ro binson , 1993). Most social scientists have focused on cohort effects. Generally younger adults are better educated and less prejudiced, so that the general reduction in prejudice can also be explained by a replacement of older, prejudiced people by younger, less prejudiced ones. Cohort effects are also found (e.g., Firebaugh & Dav is, 1988; Sc hum an, et al, 199 7), althou gh there is also some evid ence that th e most recen t cohort (those bo rn between 1961 a nd 197 2) are not less prejudiced th an the im mediately prec eding coh ort (Wilson, 1996a). A third possibility is that changes are “skin-deep” and really reflect recent norms about the inappropriateness of expressing stereotypes and prejudiced attitudes even to public opinion pollsters. T his latter p ossibility will be explo red mo re fully in C hapter 1 4. Some stereotypes have also declined. So for example, ratings of blacks, Hispanics, Asians, and Jews on the traits unintelligent, violent, lazy, welfare dependent and unpatriotic are generally less strong for groups born after World War II than for those born before, although for those who live in the non-Sou th there has actu ally been a slight increase for the mo st recent cohort — those born betw een 1960 and 1 972 (W ilson, 1 996a ). There is a dark lining to this silver cloud, however, because most Americans who are unwilling to endorse negative stereotypes or report prejudices against minority groups do endorse attitudes that

26 It is generally true that perceptions of mino rities have improved ov er time, and there has been increasing support for abstract principles of equality. However, there has also been a decline, although less sharp, in support for specific national policies designed to achieve these goals (Schuman, et al, 1997)

blacks are advantaged relative to whites through affirmative action type programs and do claim that blacks lack a sense of personal responsibility (Monteith & Spicer, 2000). This set of altitudes will be explored more fu lly in Ch apters 1 1 and 14.

Individual Differences

Wha t kinds of peo ple are most likely to have stereo types abo ut and prejudice tow ard mem bers of other ethnic and racial groups? Perhaps the most important point to be made is that despite real differences among minority groups, people who tend to stereotype one group also stereotype others. (Bird, Monachesi, & Burdick, 1952; Ehrlich, 1962b; Eysenck & Crowne, 1948; Glock, Wuthnow, Piliavin, & Spencer, 1975 ; Razran, 195 0; Wilson, 199 6b). And generally the predictors of prejudice does not differ from gr oup to group s, so w e will list the predicto rs with out d istingu ishing the targ ets. There are no surprises. White people with less education (Bobo & Kluegel, 1997; D’Alessio & Stolzenberg, 1991; Hughes, 1997; Link & Oldendick, 1996; Schuman, Steeh, Bobo, & Krysan 1997; Sigelman, 1995; Vrij & Smith, 1999; Wilson, 1996b) 27 or who are less adept a t schoo l (Glock, et al, 197 5), and h ave low er prestige o ccupa tions (D ’Alessio & Stolz enberg, 1 991; W ilson, 1 996b ) tend to exhibit more prejudice. Males (D’Alessio & Stolzenberg, 1991 ; Sigelman, 1995} especially tho se who are older (Link & Oldendick, 1996; Schuman, et al., 1997) and who live in the South (Hughes, 1997; Link & Oldend ick, 1996 ; Schum an, et al., 199 7; Sigelman , 1995) a ll tend to ha ve strong er stereotypes an d more negative racial attitudes. Men and those with traditional gender attitudes are more prejudiced against blacks (Sidan ius, Clin g, & Pra tto, 199 1). Politic al con servativ es and people w ho cla im mo re pride in their country are also m ore likely to be prejudiced (Altemeyer, 1988; Vrij & Smith, 19 99); people with more income tend to support abstract principles of racial equality more but to be less supportive of specific affirmativ e action po licies (Schum an, et al., 199 7). Obviously prejudice is not restricted to whites although there has been little research on prejudice between people of various minority groups. One consistent finding is that blacks are much more an ti-Semitic than are whites (e.g., M artire & Clark , 1982; Sigelm an, Sho ckey, & Sigelm an, 199 3), and this is true for both economic and non-economic stereotypes (Sigelman, 1995), suggesting that such prejudice is not entirely a matter of black contact with Jewish businessmen in their communities. 28

Assumed Characteristics

Obvio usly race a nd ethn icity are asso ciated with many other varia bles. For exam ple, Jews are better educated than non-Jews, blacks tend to have both less education and income than whites, and Hispanics are more likely to be Roman Catholic than are Asian Americans. Those who subscribe to what is called the assumed characteristics perspective (Coleman, Jussim, & Kelley, 1995) argue that stereotypes of various minority groups are really stereotypes of other features of these groups such as social c lass. Th us, w hen w hite peop le think o f African -Americ ans th ey tend to ima gine a rela tively lower-c lass pers on w hereas when they rat e Jews th ey imag ine som eone w ho is be tter educ ated. A similar kind of argum ent has been m ade by Eagly (19 87) with regard to gen der — stereotypes of w omen are really s tereotyp es of ho usew ives an d wo men w ho oc cupy t radition al roles (se e pp. 11 , 18, 25). According to this logic, we might expect to find that stereotypes of blacks and whites become erased or at least more similar when social class is equated, and that is exactly what has been found

27 In fairness it must be said that there is a furious debate about how to interpret education effects. Mary Jackm an (19 78; Jac kman & Mu ha, 19 84) am ong o thers h as arg ued th at edu cation effects are a ctually quite weak and that what seem to be less prejudiced responses by the more highly educated can be attributed to responses biases or to the desire and ability of the better educated to disguise anti-black attitud es and feelings. W e will disc uss th is furthe r in Ch apter 14 .

28 It shou ld also be n oted tha t blacks are n either more n or less likely to stereoty pe Hispan ics than a re whites (Sigelma n, Sho ckey, & Sigelma n, 199 3).

(Bayton , McAlister, & H amer, 195 6; Feldma n, 1972 ; Smedley & Bayton , 1978). 29 In the Feldman (1972) study occu pation accou nted for 5% of the v ariance and ra ce less than 1% for rating s on putatively race- related traits, and occupa tion accoun ted for 50% an d race only trivial amo unts for occu pation related traits. In a somew hat different approach, N iemann, Po llak, Rogers, & O’C onnor (199 8) found tha t both dress and loca tion (near a crime scene or in a scholarly environm ent) affected whether Hispa nic traits were assigned to a young man. Thus for race as for gender putative stereotypes of these categories may say mo re about th e roles and occupa tions we a ssum e people occu py than about ra ce or gend er per se. Such effects are likely to be somew hat symm etrical. For example, it is likely that most people think of bla cks wh en they thin k of drug user or w elfare mother. 30 If that is true, racial stereotypes may also “leak”into stereotypes of other groups. So, for example, given that dangerousness is part of the stereotype of blacks, it is interesting that ratings of the dan gerousness o f homeless people is predicted by estima tes of the percen tage of ho meless peop le who a re black (W haley & L ink, 1998 ). 31 There is plenty to be concerned about in this picture. O n the other han d, there is a bright side. As we have seen throughout this book for most people stereotypes are not fixed in time or consistent across situation . Blacks and H ispanics (to nam e two groups) w ho fulfill the prototype roles will be seen to fit the stereotype, but those who do not will have a fighting chance to be seen in other ways. In one classic study by Jussim, Coleman, and Lerch (1987) subjects rated black and white job applicants who were either lower class or middle class in appearance and who spoke standard English or non- grammatical English. As expected subjects rated the person dressed in upper class clothes and who spoke standard English higher. These variables had a much larger effect on the perceptions of the black than o f the white a pplicant. W hen the ca ndidate w as genera lly lower class and spo ke poorly, there w ere few differences b etween the b lack and white app licants. Ho wever, wh en the speech and dres s were more a lligned w ith mid dle class value s, the bla ck app licants were ac tually s een in a more fa vorab le light than the wh ite. Other studies (e.g., Branscom be & Smith, 199 0) also find that blacks are evaluated especially positiv ely when they are perceiv ed to hav e charac teristics stereotypica lly associate d more with whites. The good news is that white people may bend over backwards in evaluating members of minority groups that seem to share their values, attitudes, and behavior patterns. The bad news is that such a price of adm issions m ay be too steep for man y and s erves to keep o therwise qu alified memb ers of such groups out of the mainstream.

Explanations for Differences

Ethnic groups do differ from one another. Obviously, Asians, Jews, and African-Americans celebrate different holidays, speak with different accents and vocabularies, and have different cultural customs. Most professional sports have higher percentages of black than Chinese-American participants,

29 A similar study with Hispanic targets found that both race and social class make a difference for employee ratings, but although differences between Anglo and Hispanic targets were smaller for the higher s tatus cond itions th e interac tion w as no t significa nt (Jon es, 199 1).

30 These p ictures in our h eads m ay be h ard to chan ge. I wa s som ewha t chag rined to discov er recently that although the group of physicians I have consulted over the last 20 years includes three Jewish males, one black male, one Italian-American male, one black female, two Hispanic females, and two Asian females, all mu ch you nger than I, and no ne even rem otely WA SPs, wh en I think o f doctor I still co njure up an image o f a vag uely W ASP ish, grey-h aired m ale.

31 I occasionally participate in conservatively oriented Internet discussion groups and recently was embroiled in a contro versy over health ca re. It became clear that wh en the other participants discu ssed poor peop le and their pu tative failures, th eir image wa s of a lazy , black, drug addicted welfare mo ther. Although I provided data showing that the majority of people on welfare, below the poverty line, and addicted to dru gs were white, and that a large percentage (abo ut 35%) of people w ho do no t have health insurance are employed, facts took a distinct back seat to these “pictures in their heads”.

and there are undoubtedly a higher percentage of Asians and Asian Americans majoring in math and science than blacks. Income, family size, religious preferences, and a host of other more or less important variables vary with race and ethnicity. How do most Americans explain such differences? A number of national surveys have addressed that question over the years, and they have focused on black-white differences. Generally there are three distinct types of explanations for race differences (Kluegel, 1990; Kluegel & Bobo, 1993). A relatively small minority endorse genetic or supernatural explanations for race differences, and such people tend to exhibit relatively high levels of traditional prejudice. Fortunately ac ceptance of such explanations ha s tended to decline sha rply over time. In a large survey reported by Kluegel and Bobo (1993) in 1972 31% of whites agreed that blacks come from a less able ra ce, but th is had declined to 14% by 198 6. A sec ond c lass of ex plana tions is generally called individualistic, and it focuses on perceived lack of hard-work, being on welfare, and

lack of parental teaching of hard-work eth ics. Such beliefs are not asso ciated with traditional, ov ert, prejudice but rather with m ore indirect, symbolic racism (see Ch apter 14). So in 1972 67% of wh ites agreed that in come difference s betw een race s were d ue to so me peo ple not try ing ha rd eno ugh, a nd in

1986

54% s till agreed. F inally, so me peo ple accep t wha t are us ually c alled stru ctura l explana tions. S o in

1972

72% o f white A merica ns sa id that slavery and d iscrimin ation h ad crea ted con ditions that m ake it

hard for blacks to work their way out of the lower class, but that number had d eclined to 61% in 1986. In a different survey in 1988-89 (Kluegel, 1990) 21% said that income differences were due to innate ability, 44% becau se of lack of motivation , and 30% because of discrimina tion. In a study w ith college students Martin and Parker (1995) report that while some subjects accept biological explanations for race differenc es, mos t prefer expla nation s based on so cializat ion an d oppo rtunities . One potentially important aspect of stereotypes concerns perceptions of how well various groups are integrated into the general society. In that regard African-Americans are perceived to be generally disaffected (poor, rebellious, noisy and angry) and to be less concerned tha n whites with national security and more concerned with reducing discrimination (Jackson, Hodge, Gerard, Ingram, Ervin, & S heppard, 1 996). 32 While th is is not n ecessa rily an exp lanatio n for bla ck stereo types, it do es fit with res earch re viewed in the las t parag raph s ugges ting tha t blacks are seen as ou tside the main stream .

Age

Age is, with gender and race, one of the primary ways we categorize people in our society. Think of how closely age (16, 18, 21, an d 65) is associated with various m ilestones in life. Age affects friendship patterns, careers, parental status, interests, attitudes, and on it goes. Thus, it should come as no surprise that we do have stereotypes of age groups in our society. We have strong stereotypes of adolescents, and of people who are Th irty Something, Yu ppies, and even people in their Tw enties although th ere has been com paratively little research on stereotypes of youn ger groups (but see Buchanan & Holmbeck, 1998; Hummert, 1990; Matheson, Collins, & Kuehne, 2000). However, from at least the early 1950s there ha s been a steady stream of research concen trating on stereotypes of older people (Bran co & W illiamson, 1 982; Lu tsky, 198 1; Mon tepare & Zeb rowitz, 19 98). Unlike race and gender, age is a continuous category. 33 Thus to the extent we want to categorize people by age, we have to decide where to draw boundaries. When does someone leave infancy behind and becom e a child? Does ad olescence begin at 13, at th e point of beginning sexu al maturity, or wh en certain attitudes and behaviors ma nifest themselves? Is adu lthood a m atter of chronologica l age, culturally defined responsibilities, or psychological maturity? Is middle-age a matter of chronology or

32 The reality is that blacks and whites have remarkably similar attitudes as groups on most issues, especially when you correct for social class (Smith & Seltzer, 1992). The one major exception is that blacks perceive more discrimination against blacks than do whites, have different explanations for its causes, and e ndor se differen t solutio ns (Sige lman & Welc h, 199 4).

33 It also differs m arkedly from race and gender in th at while w e are stuck w ith our rac e and gen der, we will, if w e are luck y and live right, b ecom e mem bers of th e variou s age ca tegories.

attitude? Does one become old when one reaches a certain age, retires, acquires grey hair and wrinkles, or begins to decline physically? Most of these questions have not been addressed by empirical research, although there have been a few studies which have examined where people draw boundaries for different a ge categ ories. Fo r examp le, research by Aa ronso n (196 6) foun d that people ar e especia lly likely to delineate the age groupings of 5-15, 25-55, and 65-85.

Cues for Age

Just as with race and gender, age classification in our culture is essentially unproblematic. Abundant evidence (Montepare & Zebrowitz, 1998) suggests that adults reliably use facial cues, (Henss, 1991; Kogan, 1979b; Mark, Pittenger, Hines, Carello, Shaw, & Todd, 1980; Muscarella & Cunningham, 1996; T odd, M ark, Shaw , & Pittenger, 19 80; Wern ick & Ma naster, 19 84), voice cu es (Hum mert, Maz loff, & Henry, 1999; Ryan & Burk, 1974), and movement and gait (Montepare & Zebrowitz-McArthur, 1988) in judging age, Children also can classify people by age within the first year of life (Fagen, 1972; Lasky, Klein, & Martinez, 1974) and are accurate for crude age judgments by age 2 or so (Pope Edwards, 1984; Brooks-Gu nn & Lew is, 1979). In addition as we will see in the next cha pter when we d iscuss stereotypes based on ph ysical features, people who ca rry young look ing features into adu lthood are perceived differently than those w hose fa ces beco me mo re matu re.

Are Elderly Stereotypes Positive or Negative?

Much of this research has been fueled by a continuing debate about whether stereotypes of the elderly are more negative than stereotypes of young er people. The earliest studies in this area conducted by Tuckman and Lorge (1952a, 1953b) found that subjects had fairly negative beliefs about older people (e.g., “They are afraid of death”, “They never take a bath”, “They worry about unimportant things”) and thought that younger people were happier than old people (Tuckman & Lorge, 1 956).

Mixed Results

Howev er, these studies used items w ere predominately negative in ton e, so a well-docum ented agreem ent bias on the part of s ubjects could have led to this k ind of res ult. Fur thermo re, these ea rly studies used stereotype measures that contained a mixture of attitudes and beliefs (Kogan, 1979a), thus confoun ding items for which there might be an element o f truth with features less sub ject to confirm ation. More recent studies have found mixed results with some showing that the elderly are seen as more negative (e.g., Eisdorfer & Altrocchi, 1961; Hummert, Garsika, & Shaner, 1997; Levin, 1988; O’Connell & Rotter, 1979; Perry, Kulik, & Bourhis, 1996; Rosen & Jerdee, 1976a; Rosencranz & McNevin, 1969; S inger, 1986 ; Wernick & Mana ster, 1984), a nd oth ers finding th at the elderly are s een more positively (e.g., Bell & Stanfield, 1973a; 1973b; Crockett, Press, & Osterkamp, 1979; Ivester & King, 1977; MacNeil, Ramos, & Magefas, 1996; Rothbaum, 1983; Slotterback, 1996). Indirect measures based on memory (Hense, Penner, and Nelson, 1995; Perdue & Gurtman, 1990; Snyder & Miene, 1994), the Implicit Attitudes Test (Rud man, Greenw ald, Mellot, & Schw artz, 1999), and priming (Perdue & Gurtman , 1990) confirm th at stereotypes of the elderly are the more nega tive. In addition, the responses of several thousand people using the IAT suggest not only that stereotypes of the elderly are negative but are m ore strong ly than ra ce and g ender stereoty pes (Nos ek, Bana ji, & Greenwa ld, 2002 ).

Types of Differences

A meta-a nalysis of p ublished studies (K ite & Johns on, 198 8) show s that gen erally the old a re seen in m ore neg ative term s. How ever, this effect is stro ngest w hen su bjects rat e only la bels (e.g., elderly person) and weaker when other information is provided about the stimulus person (see also, Crockett & Hummert, 1987). Obviously, as has been recognized for some time (e.g., Golde & Kogan, 1959), the young are seen as more positively for some features and older people for others. Generally, the elderly are seen as less poten t, active, decisive, in strumen tal, and a utono mous (Eisdorfer & Altrocch i, 1961; N aus, 19 73; Sherm an & G old, 197 8-9). On the other h and, they tend to be s een as m ore positive on social warmth traits such as nurturance (Harris, 1975; Labouvie-Vief & Baltes, 1976). Such results a re also fo und cross-c ultura lly (Cheu ng, Ch an, & L ee, 1999 ; Harw ood, G iles, Ota , Pierson , et al.,

1996). The old tend to be rated relatively lower than the young on physical but not on cognitive and person ality attrib utes (Slo tterback & Saa rnio, 19 96). Th is shou ld not b e surpris ing from a socia l role perspective on stereotypes. Some physical and mental capacities do decline with age (although generally not as sha rply as people assum e), but as people get older they may have mo re time to devote to interpe rsona l activities and n urturin g roles. The traits the elderly are assigned also vary by context (Braithwaite, Gibson & Holman, 1985/6; Kogan & Shelton, 1960). Further, when older stimulus persons are presented as competent and active or in positive contexts, they are often rated the same as younger people (Braithwaite, 1986; Connor, Walsh, Litzelman, & Alvaraz, 1978; Drevenstedt, 1981; Kite, 1996; Locke-Connor & Walsh, 1980; Silverman & Town send, 19 77) or even more pos itively (Crocket, et a l., 1979; Jack son & S ullivan, 19 88; Kru eger, Heckh ausen , & Hun dertmark , 1995; Sh erman, G old, & Sh erman, 1 978; W einberger & M illham, 197 5). As we h ave seen b efore stereotypes o ften functio n as a ba sis for a kind of default jud gment, bu t are easily overridden by other data. We may assume that older people are fragile, forgetful, and cranky, but we read ily accep t the fact that po werful, in tellectua lly com petent, h appy o lder peop le exist an d that this wom an befo re us is o ne of th em.

Age Differences

Not s urprisin gly you nger su bjects are often m ore inclin ed to ra te the elder ly more negativ ely than older sub jects rate themselves (e.g., Canetto, Kam inski, & Felico, 1995; Collette-Pratt, 1976 ; Kite, Deaux, & Miele, 1991; Kogan, 1961b; Kogan & Shelton, 1962b; Luszcz & Fitzgerald, 1986; Rothbaum, 1983) are inclined to see elderly stereotypic terms (Hummert, Garstka, Shaner, & Strahm, 1995) and negative exemplars (Ch asteen, 2000) as m ore typical of older people. 34 In addition old er subjects tend to use fewer stereotypes and have more complex representations of older people than younger subjects do (Brewer & Lui, 1984) although there is considerable agreement among age groups on the features that charac terize aging (H umm ert, Garstka, Sh aner, & Stra hm, 19 94). Older s ubjects also have a m ore complex view of changes, tending to see them as spread more evenly over the life span (Heckhausen, Dixon, & Baltes, 198 9).

Effects of Age Stereotypes on the Elderly

In recent years we have increasingly realized that the stereotypic mental and physical deterioration of people as they age is neither inevitable nor an accurate portrayal, at least for all. To some extent the elderly may become relatively incompetent because younger people treat them as such especially by usin g patro nizing langu age (e.g., G iles, Fox, & Smith , 1993 ; William s & Giles , 1996 ). Becca Levy has conducted several studies which suggest that stereotypes of the elderly may affect them directly. In a now classic study, Levy (1 996) sublimina lly primed older people with senility or wisdo m and then tested th em on m emory ta sks. Tho se primed w ith wisdo m perform ed better, suggesting that the elderly may live in a world where they are constantly reminded of their cognitive deficits. In a subsequen t study (Hau sdorff, Levy & W ei, 1999) elderly subjects were primed either with positive or negative stereotypes of aging. Those with the positive primes not only walked faster but were more spry wh en they were observed subsequently. O lder people primed with negative stereotypes are more likely to display handwriting judged to be more stereotypic of older people (Levy, 2000), show cardiovascular stress reactions (Levy, Hausdorff, Hencke, & Wei, 2000) and to reject life-prolonging medical treatments in hypothetical situations (Levy, Ashman, & Dror, 2000). Given that stereotypes of the elderly differ some from culture to culture, we might expect also to find differences in performance and behavior. Levy and Langer (1994) found that the elderly in China have better memories than those in the United States although other studies have found fewer differences (Yoon, Hasher, Feinberg, Rahhal & Winocur, 2000). There could, of course, be many reasons for this this including real physical differences in th e ways p eople age in d ifferent cultures, bu t anoth er strong po ssibility is that th e more negativ e stereoty pes of th e elderly in th e United States c ontribu te to mem ory dec rement s.

34 This may reflect degree of contact because people who have had more contact with the elderly (such as oth er older peo ple) genera lly hav e more p ositive s tereotyp es (Ha le, 1998 ).

Stereotypes of Sub-Types of the Elderly

Two other po ints are w orth m aking in this co ntext, bo th of w hich s hou ld be ob vious . The first is that terms such as old and elderly may mean different things to different people. Young people may be inclined to think that people in the early 60s are old, whereas older samples may be inclined to draw the line in the 70s (Drevenstedt, 1976). Although only 10 years separate these two ages, they actually vary a good deal in general life style. People in their 60s are generally still working and may be at a point where energy, incom e, and wisdo m are at a peak. Peo ple in their 70s are much more likely to be retired and to suffer from physical problems. So we might expect to find more explicit stereotypes with the older age groups. People do have a sense of the extent to which various traits change over the life-span with perceived positive changes out-numbering negative ones until approximately age 80 (Heckhausen, Dixon, & Baltes, 1989). Moreover, it is clear that the most negative stereotypes of older people tend to be seen as m ore chara cteristic of the very old (over 80 ) than yo unger elderly p eople (Hum mert, 1990 ). Second, not everyone ages in the same way, and furthermore as a social role perspective suggests people often move into different sorts of roles and role demands as they move through the final sta ges of ca reers an d into re tiremen t. Therefo re, as w e have seen w ith oth er socia l catego ries it is surely simplistic to assume that there is a single stereotype of older people. One would expect the widowed woma n who h as lived in the same a partment for 40 yea rs in a deteriorating neighborh ood to be a different sort of person than the happily retired businesswoman living in an exclusive retirement center o r the do ting gra ndfat her living with h is extend ed fam ily.

Content of Sub-Types

Are there different types of elderly stereotypes as there are for women , men, and m any other categories? Yes, there are. Brewer, Dull, and Lui (1981) asked subjects to perform a picture sorting task from which three meaningful clus ters emerged. The “gran dmother” ph otos were rated as h igh in traits such as accepting, helpful, serve, calm, cheerful, and old-fashioned. The elder statesman cluster was seen as aggressive, intelligent, conservative, dign ified, neat and autho ritarian. Finally a senior citizen was d efined by traits su ch as lonely, o ld-fash ioned, a nd tra ditiona l. Schmidt an d Boland (1986) asked su bjects to sort traits that could be u sed to describe older people. Several different clusters emerged (e.g., shrew, curmudgeon, sage, bag lady/vagrant, John Wayne co nservative. Perfect grandpa rent), and as one m ight expect these sub-types were rated q uite differently on sem antic d ifferential sc ales. Su bsequ ent stu dies by H umm ert and her collea gues (e.g ., Hummert, 1990; Hummert, Garstka, Shaner, & Strahm, 1994) have found evidence for several positive and negative sub-types. Examples of the resultant sub-types are given in Table 7.x. Table 7.x: Traits Given for Positive and Negative Sub-Types of Older People for College-Age Subjec ts 35

Positive Sub-Types

Negative Sub-Types

Golden Ager

Shrew/Curmudgeon

Active

Snobbish

Sexual

Demanding

Independent

Inflexible

Interesting

Complaining

Perfect Grandparent

Despondent

35 Older subjects had more sub-types: They added activist and small town neighbor to the positive list and mildly impa ired, self-centered, and elitist to the negative.

Intelligent

Fragile

Loving

Sad

Generous

Neglected

Trustworthy

Lone ly

John Wayne Conservative

Vulne rable

Patrio tic

Afraid

Conservative

Bored

Old-Fashion ed

Sedenta ry

Mellow

Miserly

 

Severely Impaired

Hopeless

Senile

Inarticulate

Feeble

Recluse

Quiet

Timid

Dependent

Forgetful

Obviously these sub-types have different “flavors” to them, but they affect how people think about the elderly (H umm ert, 199 0). In o ther resea rch, H umm ert, Gars tka, an d Sha ner (19 95) fou nd th at both in terms of language and conversational competence, subjects, both young and old, perceived more decline with age for an elderly person labeled despondent, shrew or curmudgeon, than for one labeled a Golden Ager or Jo hn W ayne c onserv ative.

Does Age Dominate Other Categories

There are old and young men and women, blacks and whites, saints and sinners. How does age combin e with oth er social categ ories? Bas sili and Reil (19 81) foun d that ratin gs of you ng people w ere more d ifferentiated acros s other catego ries than ratings of old pe ople. For examp le, when rating o ld people, conservative tends to appear for ratings of old males, old females, old Canadian Indians and traditio nal ap peared fo r old m ales, old females , old form er bus-d rivers, old Can adian India ns, an d old White Canadians. When young people were rated there was much less redundancy of trait usage. In a sense then old peop le got about the sam e traits regardless of what else they w ere, whereas the other design ations were far m ore impo rtant fo r youn ger stimu lus pers ons

Age and Gender

There h as been special in terest in h ow a ge com bines w ith gend er becau se it has been frequ ently alleged that in a society which places particular emphasis on the attractiveness of females, the aging

process would lead to more attractiveness devaluation for females than males. Several studies do find that women are seen as less attractive as they age whereas the perceived attractiveness of men is less affected by a ging (Hen ss, 1991 ; Mathes, B rennan , Haug en, & Rice, 19 85). Deutsch, Zalenski, and Clark (1986) asked college age students and a sample of people over 60 to rate pictures of the same peo ple taken when th ey were young , middle-aged, and o lder. As expected the rated attract iveness of the ph otos d ecreased with a ge, but th is decline was s teeper for th e female photos, so for the older pictures the women were rated as less attractive than the males. Both the decline in attractiveness over age and the greater “hit” taken by women was mu ch more apparent in the ratings by young er rather than older sub jects. On the other han d in the most co mprehensive stud y thus don e, Zebrowitz, Olsen, and Hoffman (1993) found no differences in attractiveness decline between men and women. Thus, we do not have consistent support for the stereotype that women age less gracefully than men a t least in th e eyes of th e youn g. One popular sort of notion is that both males and females become more communal and less agentic as they age, in o ther word s that bo th men a nd wo men beco me mo re feminine as our cultu re defines these things. In the D eutsch, et al (1986) stud y ratings of femininity for wo men declined w ith age, but rated ma sculinity for the male photo s showed no age effects. The you nger subjects rated ma les as stronger, more competent, more successful, more active, and more independent than the females, but the older raters did not discriminate between the sexes in such ratings. Another study by Kite, Deaux, and Miele (1991) found a similar pattern of results. College age and older subjects were asked to describe a 35-year-old man, 35-year-old woman, 65-year-old man and 65-year-o ld wom an. The d escriptions w ere far more sim ilar within ag e categories th an with in gender. That is, the older woman was seen to resemble the older man more than the younger woman. The ratings of the descriptions sh owed com plex effects. Generally, the college students rated the older stimulus person s as lower on m asculine traits than th e younger stimu lus persons, but the o lder subjects did not discriminate between the ages. For male targets ratings of masculine traits were about the same for both youn g and older targets, bu t for females, the older targets were rated as low er on femininity than th e young er targets. Oth er studies (e.g., Ca netto, Ka minski, & F elico, 1995 ; O’Con nell & Rotter, 1979) have also found that women lose their traditional stereotypic qualities more with age than do men. In any ev ent thes e results s ugges t that fem ales lose their femin inity wit h age w ithou t gainin g in masculinity w hereas males do not lose their mascu linity. Generally then these data, wh ile not definitive, do su ggest th at age h as a ce rtain prio rity at leas t over ge nder.