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Cultural Stereotypes

Cultural stereotypes are usually formed between different groups of people.  Some stereotypes can be detrimental to a culture while others can put a group of people in a positive light.  By generalizing a culture's behavior the world stays tidy and predictable.  In addition negatively stereotyping a particular cultural group can make an individual feel superior to that group.   Most of us learn cultural stereotypes at an early age read from our parents, the media, and other influences around us.  It is very difficult to unlearn a stereotype once it is retained.

Cultural Stereotypes of the Chicano People  

An excellent example of cultural stereotyping is the Chicano people.   Chicano is a term developed in the 1900s to describe individuals of Mexican and American descent.(origen is pre-Columbian)    These are people who are born in the United States by have a Mexican heritage.  As a group in America today Chicano’s are thought of by other cultures as belonging to gangs and having a history of breaking the law.  They are also believed to be very hot-tempered, ignorant and poor.  In a positive light they are said to be very religious and devoted to their families with great cultural pride.


There are several cultural stereotypes associated with the entire female species.  Most women are seen as wanting to stay and home and spend their days cooking and cleaning.  Women are seen as less ambitious and less intelligent than men.  Many around the world also see women as being weak and unable to care for themselves.  Positive stereotypes include a woman’s devotion to her children and family as well as her ability to be kind and gentle to people around her. 

Black Cultural Stereotypes 

In the early 20th century black people were seen as lazy and incapable of caring for themselves.  This made them a perfect candidate for slavery.  They were seen as excellent singers and dancers and devoted to religion.  In today’s society the black culture is seen in a more positive light as superb athletes, entertainers and politicians. Nevertheless this race is still placed in stereotypical categories.

Every race throughout history has been associated with some generalized traits and behavior by those outside their culture.  Categorizing a specific group of people is a standard and normal behavior in past and present society.  And, cultural stereotypes are more than likely to continue into the future.