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By Todd D. Nelson

In addition to race and gender, humans mostly use age to categorize—and shape stereotypes about—others. Of the 3 different types, age is the single one within which the participants of the in-group (the younger) will ultimately sign up for the out-group (the old). even though ageism is located cross-culturally, it really is particularly popular within the usa, the place most folk regard getting old with melancholy, worry, and nervousness. Older humans within the usa are stigmatized and marginalized, with frequently devastating results. even supposing researchers have paid loads of realization to racism and sexism, there was a dearth of analysis on ageism. a big cause of this forget is that age prejudice remains to be thought of socially applicable. As child boomers procedure retirement age, in spite of the fact that, there was elevated educational and well known curiosity in getting older. This quantity offers the present pondering on age stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination through researchers in gerontology, psychology, sociology, and conversation. The e-book offers theoretical and empirical findings at the origins and results of ageism, in addition to feedback on the way to lessen ageism for the impending "graying of America."

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Second, stereotyping provides us with information that guides our interactions with others. These category inferences often lead us to behave in ways that confirm the stereotypes, a process known as behavioral confirmation or self-fulfilling prophecy (for a review, see Darley and Fazio 1980). Doddering but Dear 15 Countless elderly people will attest to their treatment as incompetent, undermining their ability to function effectively. Nonconscious activation of the elderly stereotype has specifically been shown to affect people’s social behavior.

We refer to this type of defense as proximal because it is an immediate way to address the presenting problem of scary thoughts in consciousness. Once such thoughts have receded from consciousness, bolstering of the worldview and self-esteem is increased, presumably to quell the deeper unconscious problem of our knowledge of our ultimate mortality. We refer to these defenses as distal Denying the Face of the Future 37 defenses because they are not rationally related to the presenting problem, but rather symbolic means of quelling an unconscious concern.

By keeping older people at a social distance, we deny ourselves exposure to stereotype-incongruent information, which could force us to see older people as a more variable group. Under certain conditions, interage contact (Caspi 1984; Schwartz and Simmons in press) and the presentation of stereotype-inconsistent information (Jackson and Sullivan 1988) curtail discrimination against elderly people. When presented with individuating information, young adults are less likely to make agestereotype-consistent attributions (Erber, Etheart, and Szuchman 1992) and, in some cases, even likely to assign more positive ratings to older Doddering but Dear 19 people than to younger counterparts (Erber, Szuchman, and Etheart 1993).

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