“But you dont look it!” “No really! what are you?”


People tend to assume what ethnicity, race and culture others are from depending on their appearance. What doesn’t seem to happen is, people taking the time to ask an individual what they actually are and allow them to label themselves as they like, if they feel part of a certain ethnic background or  not. The problem arises when an individual stereotypes another by the way they look and assumptions turn out to be incorrect.

Stereotyping can seem very silly since people do indeed believe that a certain group of people are all the same, as simple as that. What people really tend to find very difficult is to think out of those stereotypes once they have already been thinking that way for so long.

margaret mead quote children must be taught how to think

It all starts at the early age development of a human being that they are able to learn stereotypes and so it becomes hard for people as adults to fight what they have already learned. Stereotypes are programed in the individuals’ heads and as they seem to be true as time goes by but when that individual comes across another individual that does not fit the stereotype, than it becomes a very hard thing to accept and sometimes even understand.


In many cases stereotypes also become hard to fight because people themselves act upon stereotype and so expressions like “Of course I like chicken, I’m black duh” or “Yeah, I’m wearing Ralph Laure because I’m white” arise, making it difficult to fight stereotypes and educate those who don’t know anything about different groups of ethnic backgrounds or races about the variety that comes with individuals in general.

Stereotypes are indeed taught in many different ways, dealing with not just race and ethnicity but also sexual orientation. Sexual orientation is something that people tend to stereotype based on clothing, style, ethnicity and many other “hint” that may people’s “gaydar” go off.

People no longer bother to get to know others before judging or making an opinion about another individual, sometimes what race or ethnicity the person is, or their sexual orientation, is what is all they need to know, to decide if they will like them as people or not.

But thats is all just ignorance, since every individual is free to act and be as they please, and stereotypes does not allow each person as a human being to like what they want to like, dress as they please and eat what they enjoy. It only sets up ways in which they should already be, which isn’t pleasant and also takes away from the freedom of self creation. My message to you is don’t judge and assume, but take your time to ask questions you would like to know and get to know the individual as they are. Allow them to tell you and show you who they are themselves, instead of you deciding for them.




  1. We both wrote very similar posts about how stereotypes inhibit our progress towards a post-racial America. In my opinion, to strengthen your argument, I’d provide an article that tested how stereotyping affects an individual’s perception of another race, gender, or culture. For example, I used this article: http://www.gsb.stanford.edu/news/research/hr_racialstereotypes.shtml
    It gives an example of how police officers’ judgements are effected by the use of stereotypes.

  2. After reading your article, I strongly feel that, what you concern is exactly what I am thinking now. Judging from people’s appearances, you can point out what they belong to. However, it can not see through one’s inside which is an important factor under the circumstances of communications and interactions. The stereotypes is just a common view that needs to be evolved and modified. So what you express inspires me to think a new way of judging and treating people. Definitely, I find it a big deal in terms of race. New generation should have the new opinion that shapes people’s original views. plushttp://www.medialit.org/reading-room/how-break-stereotype

  3. I definitely agree with your blog, similarly how my blog addressed stereotypes. The video you posted was very upfront and hard to handle, although it is the truth among most of our thoughts about others.I also agreed with your opinion in regard to how people easily judge others and leave little to no room in the expansion of their thoughts and beliefs

  4. I really like how you explained that stereotypes are pretty obviously false and silly, but that they are still etched in many people’s minds. I think that even if someone considers himself to be accepting and as far from racist as possible, he will eventually find a stereotype that he unconsciously held in his head. These things are very difficult to get rid of, but should not be misconstrued with racism. It is completely natural for humans to distinguish each other using real differences and silly ones such as those in the video. The best way to get rid of these is to laugh at them and ignore them rather than becoming offended.


  5. The use of videos and images made you argument much stronger with the message you were getting across. It was also interesting how you explained how stereotypes begin and why they continue, but also how to avoid them. You stress that people should not assume, but instead should get to know them on a deeper level versus outside appearances. You offer an option with your argument. I found this article a while ago, but this photographer creates photos with people who do not know each other, and they end up showing more emotion and intimacy (as the article puts it than other). Even though they do not have the time to get to know one another, they are put into a situation where stereotyping may fly out the window because they will be in a rather close photo together. You blog made me think of this, and how little moments like these can make an impact on individuals, which could lead to bigger changes.

    This is also the photographer’s main page

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