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What is Merton's typology of prejudice and discrimination?

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Quick Answer

Merton's typology of prejudice and discrimination is an examination of the four possible personality types that exist regarding the treatment, in thought and action, of minority groups. They include the all-weather liberal, fair-weather liberal, fair-weather illiberal and all-weather illiberal.

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What is Merton's typology of prejudice and discrimination?
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Prejudice in Morton's typology refers to preconceived and irrational notions and attitudes toward categories of people, particularly negative views toward minority groups. Discrimination is the act of treating someone unequally or unfairly due to their status as a minority. The all-weather liberal is not prejudiced or discriminatory but can forget that others do not share their views. Fair-weather liberals are not prejudiced but resort to discriminatory acts for profit. The fair-weather illiberal is prejudiced but, often to due fear of the consequences, does not actively discriminate. All-weather illiberals are both prejudiced and discriminatory. These individuals are unashamed of their prejudice and typically feel entitled.

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    How does prejudice affect people?

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    Prejudice affects people by limiting their lives, whether it is blatantly or subtly. According to Penn State University's Daily Collegian, prejudice creates ignorance, allows the development of racism, denies opportunities to the victims of prejudice and limits the experiences and perspective of those showing the prejudice.

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    What are the negative effects of prejudice?

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    Prejudice could result in a part of the population being virtually disenfranchised, or poorly represented in certain industries. For example, gender bias may be to blame for the lack of women in the technology industry when compared with men; in 2014, Yahoo reported that its workforce consisted of only 37 percent women, and Google reported it had 30 percent women. Such bias is attributable to ingrained beliefs about women's abilities in computer science, according to Andrea Rees Davies, associate director of the Clayman Institute for Gender Research at Stanford University.

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    How does prejudice affect society?

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    Prejudice affects society most when discriminatory views are translated into institutional policy, said Dr. Alvin Poussaint, as reported by the Library of Congress. Such institutional policy can lead to racial segregation and a lower quality of life for the oppressed.

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    How is it possible to stop prejudice?

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    Prejudice can be stopped as well as prevented by helping people learn about their own heritage and to share that heritage, teaching people to be mindful of their words, and challenging stereotypical remarks made by others. It is also crucial that classrooms discuss the terms of racism, sexism, homophobia, anti-semitism and bias in order to help students learn what can and cannot be classified as prejudice.

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