Prejudice and Discrimination
Published Online: 30 JAN 2010
Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.
Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology
How to Cite
Denmark, F. L. 2010. Prejudice and Discrimination. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–2.
- Published Online: 30 JAN 2010
Although often employed interchangeably and certainly related by laypersons and the media, the terms prejudice and discrimination possess distinct meanings for most social scientists. Prejudice denotes the possession of negative attitudes of a particular kind regarding members of a specific group or category. As commonly used in psychology, prejudice is not merely a statement of opinion or belief, but an attitude that includes feelings such as contempt, dislike, or loathing. Discrimination is a term applied to the negative actions that result from prejudicial attitudes and that are directed against the targets or victims of prejudice. Someone who is prejudiced may, in certain situations, practice discrimination. Prejudice, stereotyping, and discrimination often go hand-in-hand, but it is also possible to have one without the others.