Cognitive Aspects of Prejudice

Cognitive Aspects of Prejudice University of Bristol Rationality and irrationality in intergroup relations. When we think of human attempts to understand the physical or the biological environment, man appears essentially as a n exploring and rational animal, stumbling heavily on his way, pulled back by his insufficiencies and stupidities, but still imperfectly rational, still engaged in what Sir Frederick Bartlett (1932) called many years ago the “effort after meaning.” This effort does not translate itself into some mystical concept of a “group mind.’’ It works within the limits imposed by the capacities of individual human minds, and within the socially determined processes of the diffusion of knowledge. It is essentially a rational model, however imperfect the exploring rationality often appears to be. But there seems to be one exception to this model, one set of problems for the consideration of which we seem to have adopted a very different set of ideas. It is as if we were suddenly dealing with a different and strange animal that uses some of his abilities to adapt to some aspects of his environment, and is quite incapable of using them in order to adapt to others. T h e prevailing model of man as a http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Social Issues Wiley

Cognitive Aspects of Prejudice

Journal of Social Issues, Volume 25 (4) – Oct 1, 1969

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
1969 The Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues
ISSN
0022-4537
eISSN
1540-4560
DOI
10.1111/j.1540-4560.1969.tb00620.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

University of Bristol Rationality and irrationality in intergroup relations. When we think of human attempts to understand the physical or the biological environment, man appears essentially as a n exploring and rational animal, stumbling heavily on his way, pulled back by his insufficiencies and stupidities, but still imperfectly rational, still engaged in what Sir Frederick Bartlett (1932) called many years ago the “effort after meaning.” This effort does not translate itself into some mystical concept of a “group mind.’’ It works within the limits imposed by the capacities of individual human minds, and within the socially determined processes of the diffusion of knowledge. It is essentially a rational model, however imperfect the exploring rationality often appears to be. But there seems to be one exception to this model, one set of problems for the consideration of which we seem to have adopted a very different set of ideas. It is as if we were suddenly dealing with a different and strange animal that uses some of his abilities to adapt to some aspects of his environment, and is quite incapable of using them in order to adapt to others. T h e prevailing model of man as a

Journal

Journal of Social IssuesWiley

Published: Oct 1, 1969

References

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