Assignment 1: Social and Cultural Influences on Behavior

Think about a few of these examples:

  1. Due to terrorist attacks in different parts of the world, some people have become extremely suspicious of people of the Islamic faith who are branded as terrorists and fanatics.
  2. If you were walking alone at night would you rather have a group of teenage girls come your way or a man of a different race/culture than you?
  3. Rosa Parks is arrested for sitting in the wrong part of the bus.
  4. Someone gets a promotion at work and the rumor is that it is only because of the color of their skin.

Please answer the following questions in your original post due by Saturday, December 8, 2012:

  • Select one of the examples and answer the following questions.
  • What is the type of prejudice or discrimination that is present in the chosen example?
  • What causes this type of prejudice or discrimination?
  • Does social conformity play a role in any of these situations?
  • What steps can be taken to eliminate such prejudices by both the in group and out group, as well as from the individual level vs. the societal level?

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