Pub. date: 2007 | Online Pub. Date: October 03, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412956253 | Print ISBN: 9781412916707 | Online ISBN: 9781412956253| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Kristin J. Anderson
Discrimination is the phenomenon of treating a person differently from other persons based on group membership and an individual's possession of certain characteristics such as age, class, gender, race, religion, and sexuality. Discriminatory behavior can take various forms from relatively mild behavior, such as social avoidance, to acts of violence, including hate crimes and genocide. Social psychologists study several aspects of discrimination, including overt or old-fashioned discrimination and subtle or modern forms. For example, overt discrimination might involve explicitly excluding job applicants who are women or people of color. Subtle discrimination occurs when, for example, the job interviewer unwittingly might sit farther away, not make eye contact, and conduct a shorter interview with a job applicant who is a woman or person of color. Social psychologists distinguish individual discrimination from institutional discrimination. Another ...