Making the Connections: Establishing a National Dialogue Using a Twelve-Year Study on the Way Individuals Respond to Stereotyping and Labeling

Dr. Renee Lewis
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Dr. Lewis's research is a twelve-year study on the way individuals respond to stereotyping and labeling. Lewis found that stereotyping and labeling alone do not necessarily signal problems. However, when individuals become the target of stereotyping and labeling that is used to incite verbal violence, physical violence, or to justify discrimination in education, the workplace, housing, or healthcare, the matter becomes nearly impossible to survive and cannot be ignored.

After interviewing and surveying nearly 2500 men, women, and children from diverse racial, ethnic, social, religious, and economic backgrounds, Dr. Lewis found that common responses to stereotyping and labeling include retreating, retaliating, withdrawing and ignoring the matter. Furthermore, Lewis found that ten percent of those individuals interviewed know how to successfully defuse, deflect and disarm negative stereotyping and labeling experiences. More importantly, these individuals possess a special way in which they transform the experience into motivation and tools for positive change.

Dr. Lewis, herself, responded effectively to negative stereotyping and labeling experiences during her life and transformed them into personal and professional success.

This presentation will introduce Dr. Lewis's study and reveal how it is being used to initiate a national dialogue on responding to stereotyping and labeling through community dialogue groups and online dialogue.

Keywords: Communication, Dialogue, Stereotyping, Labeling, Education, Teaching
Stream: Language, Linguistics, Knowledge, Philosophy, Ethics, Consciousness, Teaching and Learning, Ethnicity, Difference, Identity, Immigration, Refugees, Race, Nation, Sexuality, Gender, Families, Religion, Spirituality
Presentation Type: Virtual Presentation in English
Paper: Making the Connections

Dr. Renee Lewis

Assistant Professor, Department of English, Middle Tennessee State University

Ref: H06P0588