Discrimination, Prejudice, and Stereotyping
Are adults stigmatized because they are single? Are they targets of discrimination, prejudice, and stereotyping? There is a huge literature in psychology on stigma, stereotyping, and related topics. However, except for select subgroups of singles such as divorced people and gay men and lesbians, singles have rarely been the topic of study in this field. Other work in the area can only suggest answers to important questions about the effects of stigma on self-esteem and other personal and interpersonal outcomes; the answers will not necessarily be the same for singles as they are for other devalued groups.
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Cejka, M. A. (1993). A demon with no name: Prejudice against single women. In M. OíBrien & C. Christie (Ed.), Single women: Affirming our spiritual journey. Westport, CT: Bergin & Garvey.
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Crocker, J., & Major, B. (1994). Reactions to stigma: The moderating role of justifications. In M. P. Zanna and J. M. Olson (Eds.), The psychology of prejudice: The Ontario symposium (Vol. 7, pp. 289-314). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
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Hillburg, B. (September 16, 2002). AASP fighting laws unfair to single people. Daily News (Los Angeles edition). p. 3.
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Major, B., Gramzow, R., McCoy, S. K., Levin, S., Schmader, T., & Sidanius, J. (2002). Perceiving personal discrimination: The role of group status and status legitimizing ideology. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 80, 782-796.
Major, B., McCoy, S. K., Kaiser, C. R., & Quinton, W. J. (in press). Prejudice and self-esteem: A transactional model. In W. Stroebe & M. Hewstone (Eds.), European review of social psychology.
Major, B., Quinton, W. J., & McCoy, S. K. (2002). Antecedents and consequences of attributions to discrimination: Theoretical and empirical advances. In M. P. Zanna (Ed.), Advances in Experimental Social Psychology (Vol. 34). New York: Academic Press.
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Milligan, J. (2002). Unfair to singles? Singles without children may be shortchanged on benefits. Virginia Business, 17, 23-30.
Morris, W. L., DePaulo, B. M., Hertel, J., & Ritter, L. C. (2003). Perceptions of people who are single: A developmental life tasks model. Manuscript submitted for review. (Available from email@example.com.)
Morris, W. L., Sinclair, S., & DePaulo, B. M. (In preparation). The perceived legitimacy of marital status discrimination. (Available from firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Munro, G. D., & Ditto, P. H. (1997). Biased assimilation, attitude polarization, and affect in reactions to stereotype-relevant scientific information. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 23, 636-653.
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Spurlock, J. (1990). Single women. In J. Spurlock & C. B. Robinowitz (Eds.), Womenís Progress: Promises and Problems (pp. 23-33). New York: Plenum Press. (Includes comments on discrimination)
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Zonana, V. F. (1990, March 29). Report finds widespread bias against unmarrieds. Los Angeles Times, pp. A1, A26.
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