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The Nature of Prejudice: 25th Anniversary Edition Unabridged Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0201001792
ISBN-10: 0201001799
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Gordon W. Allport was born in 1897 in Montezuma, Indiana. He received his A.B., A.M., and Ph.D. in psychology from Harvard University, did postgraduate work abroad, and returned to Harvard in 1930, where he served as professor of psychology until his death in 1967. During his lifetime, Allport served as president of both the American and Eastern Psychological Associations, director of the National Opinion Research Center, and editor of the Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology. His other books included The Psychology of Rumor, The Individual and His Religion, Personality, and Becoming.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Basic Books; Unabridged edition (January 22, 1979)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0201001799
  • ISBN-13: 978-0201001792
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.4 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #113,611 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
If you have truely studied Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcom X then you have probably seen pictures of this book next to them on their desks. Don't think for one minute that you understand prejudice without reading this book first. It explains why prejudice occurs and how it is part of our basic makeup. Mr. Allport also explains how to change these perceptions that generate the discrimination. For any Civil Rights Advocate this is a must read. It puts you inside the mind of those who practice bigotry and discrimination. If you cannot understand them then how can you defeat them.
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Format: Paperback
Gordon Willard Allport (1897-1967) was an American psychologist and professor at Harvard, as well as one of the founding figures of personality psychology.

He writes in the Preface to this 1958 book, "The present volume does not pretend to deal with the science of human relations as a whole. It aims merely to clarify one underlying issue---the nature of human prejudice. But this issue is basic, for without knowledge of the roots of hostility we cannot hope to employ our intelligence effectively in controlling its destructiveness."

Here are some quotations from the book:

"Perhaps the briefest of all definitions of prejudice is: thinking ill of others without sufficient warrant." (Pg. 7)
"(W)e note an almost universal principle in respect to overlapping group differences: the diffences within the same group are greater (i.e., the range is wider) than the differences between the averages of the two groups." (Pg. 102)
"Now, what are the facts? Do Negroes, for example, have a distinctive body odor or not? ... (in an experiment) the offensiveness seems to come equally from the sweaty bodies of the two races. Odor is a curious psychological shibboleth. It is made to bear the brunt of intimate subjective feelings (and prejudices), but its role seems primarily to be that of an 'objective' excuse or rationalizer for affective states that are too personal and private to be understood or analyzed in their own right." (Pg. 135-136)
"Even those who favor segregation do not want Negroes to develop their own language or their own laws. They want they to be amalgamated in certain respects. And even those who argue for assimilation may wish to preserve certain pleasant cultural traits---perhaps the cuisine of the French, Negro spirituals, Polish folk dances, St.
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Format: Hardcover
When I page through this book I'm astounded that it was written in 1954. This is truly a ground-breaking work in both psychology and sociology. 537 pages, well indexed, with references. Some of the many topics covered include:
attitudes and beliefs
acting out prejudice
the separation of human groups
personal values as categories
sex as an in-group
social distance
verbal rejection
riots and lynching
the essential role of rumor
the neurosis of extreme conformity
social regulation of aggression
cultural devices to ensure loyalty
scapegoats for special occasions
the demagogue as a person
- and so on- it's a chilling but necessary read, and there is great satisfaction in owning the first edition of such and important work.
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By A Customer on April 25, 1999
Format: Paperback
Allport's The Nature of Prejudice is written in a very comprehensive manner that allows you to reflect upon your own experience in prejudices both internal and external. This book is a classic and sheds light on inter-cultural and intra-cultural understanding in the years to come.
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Format: Paperback
I first read this book in 1965, just months before the Watts Riots, in which I was a "participant." I worked for ADT Protection Service as an armed security officer and was on foot in the riot area during the riot. Every couple of pages Dr. Allport states that if there is something in which you believe, and it has a basis in FACT, it is not prejudice. The fact that both Dr. King and Malcom X had come to the belief that the disparity in wealth between rich and poor was the cause of this nation's problems, and not race, was the immediate cause of both of their deaths.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dr. Gordon Allport's study of prejudice is a must read for anyone who wants a better understanding of human behavior.
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By KMG on February 14, 2013
Format: Paperback
Kenneth B. Clark, whose did research with his wife Mamie that was cited by the Supreme Court in its decision to desegregate schools, was a professor at The City College of NY, not Columbia. With that out of the way, this is an exceptional book. Back in my youth, when teaching a course at a college of what was to become part of the City University of NY, on Prejudice and Intergroup Conflict, this was the basic "text" I used. It was outstanding, and remains so. Highly recommended!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought it for a class I was taking in order to write a paper. Even though it was originally written so long ago and some of the references are dated (but amusing!), Allport's premise about prejudice and hatred are still strikingly relevant today. A great book!
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