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Why are stereotypical portrayals of minorities in the media problematic?

Media often depict stereotypical views on social minorities and their members. For instance, Roma are presented as criminal, Middle Eastern refugees as a threat to European values, Muslims as religious fundamentalists. But what effects do such stereotypical information have on their audiences? Dr. Srividya Ramasubramanian addressed exactly this question with her study dealing with African-American […]

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Language abstraction in news about immigrants

Research by Dana Mastro and colleagues examined the use of abstraction in language describing immigrants in US newspapers. Variations in the use of abstraction in language and their consequences were first systematically described by the linguistic category model (Semin & Fiedler, 1988). The linguistic category model proposes that abstract language (i.e., adjectives) encourages people to […]

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Negative reports about immigrants in the mass media associate with prejudice

Italian majority has scarce direct contact with immigrants. Consequently, the primary source of information about immigrants is the mass media. Unfortunately, the information about immigrants transmitted through TV news and newspaper is twice as often negative as positive. This way, TV news and newspaper represent an exception to different forms of intergroup contact that are […]

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Threat or benefit: How do social workers perceive asylum seekers?

Tartakovsky and Walsh suggest that past research about immigrants focused too much on negative perception of immigrants. They propose a new model that includes not only perception of threats from immigrants but also perception of benefits that immigrants may bring to host societies. In their model, threats relate to economy, physical aspects, social cohesion and […]

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Who is likely to demonstrate against refugees?

In Germany, men and people with right-wing political orientation were more likely to participate in demonstration against refugees. People following public broadcasting media are less likely to demonstrate against refugees, while people following commercial broadcasting media are more likely to demonstrate against refugees. Reading newspaper did not influence political participation, whereas active use of social […]

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Who is afraid of refugees?

In Germany, people who actively use of social media, commenting or sharing contents about refugees, held worse attitudes toward refugees, considering refugees as threat to economy, culture or own safety. Importantly, people who have had direct contact with refugees, speaking with them, held better attitudes toward refugees, considering refugees as benefit to economy, enrichment of […]

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