Nearly every time we turn on the evening news we see ethnic and racial conflict.From Northern Ireland to Bosnia, from Irag to Israel, and from the United States to South America, clashes have resulted in blood shed.Two terms that are commonly used when dealing with these conflicts are prejudice and ethnocentrism.
Ethnocentrism is the tendency to view the Norms and values of one's culture as absolute and to use them as a standard against which to judge and measure all other cultures.This leads people to feel that their group is superior above all others, and that there is the Norm.Ethnocentrism also leads to prejudice against so called foreigners, who may be viewed as barbarians, heathens, uncultured people, or savages.
Feelings of ethnic superiority within a nation are usually accompanied by the belief that political and economic domination by one's own group is natural, morally right, in the best interest of the nation, and perhaps also "God's will."Ethnocentrism has been a factor in some of the worst atrocities in human history (such as Adolf Hitler's mass executions an estimated six million European Jews and Gypsies).Prejudice means to make a judgment in advance of examination.The judgment may be unduly favorable or negative.In regard to race, prejudiced people apply r! acial stereotypes to all, or nearly all, members of a group according to preconceived notions of what they believe the group to be like and how they feel the group will behave.
Racial prejudice results from the belief that people who differ in behaviors, values, intellectual functioning, and attitudes.Prejudice individuals think about people in a predetermined, usually negative, categorical way.It usually leads to the involvement of unequal treatment known as discrimination. In contrast to ethnocentrism, racism is more apt to be based on physical differences than on cultural differences.However, l.