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ERIC Number: ED128536
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1974
Pages: 9
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
The Cognitive-Developmental Approach to Inter-Ethnic Attitudes.
Kohlberg, Lawrence; Davidson, Florence
Psychological research on race and ethnic stereotypes and attitudes has been carried out from two points of view -- a social learning view and a psychodynamic view. Neither of these grasp essential components of young children's ethnic attitudes or prejudices, nor do they detail the major developmental factors leading to the growth of tolerance and the decline of prejudice. To explain these features of children's ethnic attitudes, a cognitive-developmental view is elaborated in this paper. This theory undertakes to explain why prejudices tend to be formed by young children in almost any cultural milieu; to explain why prejudice tends to decline with psychosocial and cognitive development in most cultural milieus, and to explain why children or adults of a given chronological age vary in prejudice in terms of environmental factors leading to development or retardation psychosocially. Prejudice in young children is primarily the active interpretation of physical and other crude differences between races and groups to which the child is necessarily exposed. Some typical seven year old second grade interchanges are presented to illustrate how prejudice emerges from the basic characteristics of the young child's thinking about social roles and groups. The educational implications of this theory are that efforts to develop interethnic tolerance should be parts of broader efforts at moral and civic education designed to stimulate moral stage development. (Author/AM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A