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Ingroup/Outgroup Biases

 
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While reading Are We Done Fighting?, one of the sections of the book explores outgroup and ingroup biases.and how people might feel or make decisions based on these biases.

From the article In-groups, out-groups, and the psychology of crowds, the basic explanation of these categorizations is that an "in-group" are those whom someone considers to be like them and an "out-group" as those whom are different from them. In general, the behavior that is typically observed is that people that are seen as part of the "in-group" are viewed favorably, and usually, those who are part of the "out-group" are viewed unfavorably.



From the video description:
"Are we dehumanizing people who are part of our out-groups today? Humans are tribal creatures, and we tend to view our in-groups more favorably. But research has shown that some people can see out-group members as less-than-human."

A possible way to see what some in-group and out-group biases one has are in the Implicit Bias Tests.
 
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Nice video! I thought it did quite a good job of covering the topic quickly and lightly but still touching on many of the important points. More on this, including specific tips to address it, in chapter 2 or Are We Done Fighting?

One thing to keep in mind about those Implict Bias Tests is that they've come under heavy criticism from some academics for various reasons including that if the same person takes them at different times their results tend to vary, which may be a sign that that tests aren't as strong as they claim to be. So view your results with that in mind, but also know that the reality of implicit bias is very well established: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-to-think-about-implicit-bias/
 
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I took the implicit bias test that Dave linked to. My head now officially hurts, as it's "game" certainly exercised parts of my brain that I don't usually use.

I can think of various flaws with the test, as I generally view Asian people more warmly and with higher regard than the general american/white face. BUT, the test compared used words for "good" and for "bad"--many of the bad ones have been historically attributed to Asians (bomb, devil, and at least one more), while only two of the "good" ones (like lucky and sweet) are attributed to Asians. So, it was easier to answer faster for the good-white than for the good-Asian, even if that wasn't what I've ever felt.

But, I will very much admit to having implicit biases. I tend to be biased against people who dress trendily and who wear trendy styles of make-up (basically, if someone looks like the "popular" person, I have an implicit bias). And, I struggle with implicit biases against those who buy big houses and live in HOAs. I'm struggling with this a lot right now, as theirs a 30 house HOA going in on our little private road (which before it went in, only had 12 houses on it).

I fully admit that there may be other implicit biases that I don't know about, but I don't know if a test would help me find out about them, as this one certainly did not.
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote:I can think of various flaws with the test, ...

I fully admit that there may be other implicit biases that I don't know about, but I don't know if a test would help me find out about them, as this one certainly did not.



These tests are fun and there are so many! I remember taking the black and white one some years ago when it was the only one on there.

Of course, take your individual results with a grain of salt, especially if you weren't 100 percent distraction-free as the tests measure differences in your reaction time. 

The test is not measuring your "bias", it is measuring your "implicit associations". I'm sure there is a stack of research supporting the leap from association to bias for their data set, as a group. And I'm sure their is a stack of research informing their choices of words and images used in these tests. But at the individual level, try not to read too much into your results. 

My understanding is that these kind of associations are built over time by our culture and what media we are exposed to, and don't necessarily reflect how we feel about or treat other people. Biases may be a factor in how we define our in-group, so awareness of a bias may help people to expand their perceived in-group.

Try re-watching some of the media you loved watching over and over as a kid and you may notice some interesting, blatant by today's standards, stereotyping of both heroes and villains. In many of my childhood favorites, if a character is smoking tobacco or eating a lot of candy or super rich, you can be sure they will turn out to be the villain. 
 
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Dave Burton wrote:
From the video description:
"Are we dehumanizing people who are part of our out-groups today? Humans are tribal creatures, and we tend to view our in-groups more favorably. But research has shown that some people can see out-group members as less-than-human."



This is definitely what we saw in my training in Social Therapy… Rojzman even says the definition of violence, to make the difference with anger and defending one's own limits, is if we still considere or not the other person(s) as human or not. And dehumanizing can last the 3 seconds we use a depreciative comment!

He also advised to always  read newspapers that are not from our political bias etc!


 
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