Unfair and offensive as they may be, stereotypes are ubiquitous. Logic tells us it’s ludicrous to label all, or most, members of a particular ethnic group as lazy, or untrustworthy, or unusually smart, but such shorthand thinking remains remarkably resilient.
Why do we do it? How do such stereotypes develop? In a fascinating new paper, a team of researchers led by University of Aberdeen psychologist Douglas Martin provides evidence that they are an unfortunate result of the way we process and communicate knowledge.