Aversive Racism - Essay Example

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Middlebury College
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Aversive racism is a contemporary discrimination that significantly manifests itself at the individual level. In this regard, aversive racism is characterized by individuals who show compassion to victims of injustice, advocate for racial equality, and most consider themselves to be nonprejudice (Aversive Racism). However, aversive racists uphold negative attitudes and beliefs about minority groups, for instance, the blacks and other groups. Therefore, unlike the noticeable discrimination experienced in the United States in the past, modern racism is prevalent today, characterized by individuals of a dominant group towards the minority groups and ethnic attitudes from the well-educated. As a result, the consequences of the modern racism cannot be ruled out since they are as significant as traditional racism.

Evidently, stereotypes, implicit bias, and controlled and automatic processing exhibit a good relation with aversive racism. However, despite them occurring separately, they support aversive racism. For instance, when people have an adverse emotional reaction towards a social group, it is prejudice. Again, when the same people have no reasons at all to dislike some people within the ethnic group, then that is a stereotype (Subtle bias, combating). Likewise, through implicit bias, controlled and automatic processing, people tend to love themselves more. Logic suggests that when people like themselves more, they are bound to like their groups more and disregard other associations. As a result, aversive racism is an automatic bias that is immediate and mostly occurs unintended and irresistible. Additionally, ones personal experiences may influence understanding of the aversive racism (David). For instance, black people are most likely to interact with aversive racists in their daily lives. In most cases, some of the racists make it so clear that the victims cannot fail to notice.

Transition to modern racism especially in workplaces is likely to affect the majority of the group members workplace experiences. Notably, according to American Psychological Association, an attitude towards other people and more so of the minority group is as a result of accumulations of experiences and close associations with such groups over time. As a result, the association to majority groups offers a suitable platform in which members can comfortably manifest their negative feeling towards others. However, workplace offers different experiences to aversive racist. Reasonably, they consciously uphold and endorse egalitarian values since they highly desire to be no prejudiced. Mostly, while at work they will never discriminate and will always be inspired to get rid of feelings, behaviors, and beliefs that will portray them as racists.

Indeed, this form of racism has proved to be more challenging to manage within the organization more than any other overt racism. As observed, overt racism is was more open and easily noticeable than aversive racism. Therefore, unlike the traditional discrimination, aversive racism operates differently and in indirect ways (Aversive Racism). This makes it more difficult to identify within an organization. Furthermore, aversive racists always appear variable and highly inconsistent, for instance at the time they discriminate manifesting their attitudes towards others and other time they do not. Additionally, they can recognize and highly uphold egalitarian values, especially when presented with situations in which normatively appropriate answer is required. For this reason, organizations face difficulties in identifying aversive racists within an organization. As a result, organizations should address aversive racism by developing suitable techniques from the individual level to the group levels. For instance, constant training among the employees can significantly counter stereotypic groupings that are based on social gatherings (Aversive Racism). Additionally, conscious attitudes exhibited by aversive racists are egalitarian, and if well utilized can be influencing in bringing about change.

In conclusion, aversive racism is real and cannot be ignored. It has posed difficulties within the organization in implementing effective measures to deals with racists. However, a proper understanding of aversive racism can significantly contribute to developing and implementing policies that prevent its effects. Again, the organization should embrace regular training program as a technique to counter substantially stereotypic groupings that are based on social gatherings.


Aversive Racism. Psychology. Iresearch.net, n.d. psychology.iresearchnet.com/social-psychology/prejudice/aversive-racism/. 19 Oct 2017.

Subtle bias, combating. Aversive Racism. jrank.org, n.d. encyclopedia.jrank.org/articles/pages/5976/Aversive-Racism.html. 19 Oct 2017.

David, French Americans are Divided on the Subjects of Race and Racism. Racism and the Indelible Impact of Personal Experience. Nationalreview.com, 29 June 2016. www.nationalreview.com/article/437311/race-america-personal-experience-changing-perceptions. 19 Oct 2017.

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