My interpretation of Lippman’s quote is that we use stereotypes as a defense mechanism to ensure our place in society. We categorize people into groups in order to make sense of the confusing situations we encounter in our daily reality. The position in society and the rights society has granted upon us influences the stereotypes we create and provides us with a fortress of comfort.

I definitely agree with the way Lippman defines stereotypes because it implicates the issue of self-respect and how we identify with a position in society. It shows how intertwined our thought process is to the feelings and emotions of stereotypes. I agree that with the overall message that stereotypes are strong forces inside of us that act on our personal experiences in the environment we have grown up in.

I think this describes contemporary media systems in that all mediums operate on the premise of stereotypes. Media can be a manipulative force and without proper engagement and analysis of how humans develop stereotypes and biases in their lives, journalists will never be able to overcome them. When we see clips in class of television shows or movies, like South Park, stereotypes play a huge role in how the show is produced as well as how it is perceived.

And now, a South Park clip about stereotypes. I can’t find a way to embed it into the blog, so here is the link.


About spencerpopp

Journalism senior at the University of Oklahoma. Originally from Omaha, Nebraska but consider Dallas, TX my most recent home.
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2 Responses to Stereotypes

  1. gettingitdonemyway says:

    Was this blog difficult for you – you have been able to make really interesting connectins and this one was not as clear. Cartman always puts a spin on things.

    • spencerpopp says:

      I wouldn’t say that. South Park loves to poke fun at stereotypes. In the show, each of the characters fills a different role. Cartman is the selfish, arrogant, intolerant kid who doesn’t change, no matter what. In this episode, the lady preaching about stereotypes and running the tour ends up judging the smoker. Matt Stone and Trey Parker were illustrating how we often times see ourselves as the most tolerant people but we still make judgments about certain groups, in this case smokers. We think we deserve all of the personal liberties we enjoy every day, but when someone does something or acts a certain way, we judge them negatively. This episode came out during a time when the national media was talking so much about the smoking-bans across the country in buildings and other public places.

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