Understanding Prejudice
Understanding Prejudice
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A Cross-Cultural Exploration of Prejudice


To add an international dimension to students' understanding of prejudice, stereotyping, and stigma.


Set up a way for class members to email students from another country, either by prior arrangement with an instructor in that country or through an international pen-pal service for students. To locate instructors, try searching the Directory of Experts. For student pen-pal services, try visiting:

Once students are paired with a pen-pal, ask them to have a dialogue about prejudice, stereotyping, and stigmatization in that country. For example, U.S. students might ask questions such as:

  • What stereotypes do people in your country have of Americans?
  • Who are the most stigmatized people in your country, and why?
  • Is there a civil rights movement in your country?
  • Have you ever been the target of discrimination yourself?
  • Are females and males treated equally in your country?
  • What forms of prejudice are least acceptable in your country?
  • Are any forms of prejudice considered acceptable?

Then, once students have finished corresponding with their partner, you might have them do any of the following:

  • Write a brief paper on what they learned
  • Highlight email passages to share with the class
  • Hold small group discussions in which students report their experiences