Primetime: Using Priming Techniques to Increase Awareness of Gender and Racial Stereotypes in Media
Markus Furer, Talia Giuffrida, Roni Griguts, & Nicholas Norcia (BA Students).
Media prevalence in today’s society is unavoidable. Along with their ubiquity comes the risk of propagating or reinforcing stereotypes (Fujioka, 1999); thus, exposure to media could negatively impact people’s perceptions of minority groups. A possible way of dealing with this issue is increasing media consumers’ awareness of stereotypical depictions of minority groups in media.
Controlling for race and gender, what is the relationship between priming techniques students’ perceptions of the media?
This study investigated the effects of priming on people’s perceptions of the media. Participants (N=30) were split into 3 groups: one group was primed with educational video material describing racial stereotyping in media, another with educational video material related to gender stereotypes, and the control group with neither. Afterwards, all participants were asked to watch a video clip (Disney’s Oliver & Company). Finally, participants were asked to complete a paper-and-pencil questionnaire regarding their perceptions of gender, racial, and neutral issues expressed in the video clip.
Those primed with either educational material found the video clip found the Oliver & Company clip significantly more ‘upsetting’ (partial eta squared = .28). Those primed with the ‘gendergender’ educational material were significantly more likely to think that the filmmakers of the filmmakers of Oliver & Company were males (partial eta squared = .24).
Males were more likely to consider the filmmakers of Oliver & Company to be females than females were (on a 7-point Likert scale, males’ mean = 3.37, females’ mean = 2.28). Although with males priming had no significant effect, females who watched the
Females were significantly more likely than males to assume that the filmmakers were white, across all three conditions.
Through our study, we have found that priming techniques can significantly increase people’s awareness of media stereotyping.
For more details regarding the study contact
Dr. S. Shyam Sundar by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at (814) 865-2173