Stigmatization in Childhood
“Hey, ape man, what you got tied to your feet, boxing gloves?” So went the first day of school for Henry Viscardi (1952, p. 14), born with severely deformed legs. Experiences like Viscardi’s stun those of us who imagine young children free of the hatred and prejudice that plague adulthood, and who, like Rodgers and Hammerstein, assume that “you’ve got to be carefully taught,” presumably by prejudiced adults, in order to hate. When do children first show tendencies to stigmatize those who are different in some way? How do such tendencies evolve over the childhood years? Why do some children come to tolerate differences, whereas others hate with passion? What does the study of human development contribute to a multidisciplinary view of stigma? It is questions such as these that the present chapter addresses.
KeywordsSocial Learning Disable Child Disable Person White Child Black Child
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