In modern usage, stereotype is an oversimplified mental picture of some group of people who are sharing a certain characteristic (or stereotypical) qualities. The term is thus often used in a negative sense, with stereotypes being seen by many as illogical yet deeply held beliefs that can only be changed through education.
Common stereotypes of the past included a variety of allegations about various racial groups (see: racial stereotype and racial profiling) and predictions of behavior based on social status and wealth (See social stereotype).
In literature and art, stereotypes are clichéd or predictable characters or situations. For example, the stereotypical devil is a red, impish character with horns and a pitchfork.
Originally a stereotype was an impression taken from a form of movable lead type and used for printing instead of the original type. This was generalized into a metaphor for repeating a set of ideas identically with no changes (as would have been possible in a form of movable type).
Common stereotypical characters
- The villain with black clothes, waxed moustache and generalized Central or Eastern European accent.
- The boastful Texan who wears a cowboy hat everywhere, even with a suit or a tuxedo.
- The over-achieving, stingy immigrant.
- The sophisticated , well mannered, Latin womanizer.
- The lazy and/or uneducated Mexican, African American, Polynesian, etc.
- The short-tempered , chunkified wrestler
- The "hard-boiled" or tough private eye
- The greasy overweight, elderly, and/or hairy European walking down the beach in speedos
- The aging absent-minded professor, a schlemiel (sometimes speaking incoherently)
- The wealthy miser living a poor life to save money.
- The middle-aged father with a paunch who remembers his glory days in high school
- The ditzy, busty blonde woman ("brain-dead blonde")
- The dowdy librarian (who becomes instantly attractive when she takes her glasses off)
- The snobbish butler (speaking with a British English or other European accent), likeNiles from the TV series The Nanny
- The nerdy scientist (with black wiry-framed glasses, black bowtie, white coat, speaking in technobabble)
- Similar: The short genius schoolkid, who wears glasses, pants up to his armpits, orthopedical shoes, acne, a member of the science club and the chess club and often a victim of bullies("geek" or "dork").
- The peg-legged pirate with an eye patch and parrot who's obsessed with finding aburied treasure
- The overweight, doughnut-eating cop who believes skateboarding is a crime
- The brightly colored court jester
- The jolly Middle Eastern or South Asian convenience store or cornershop owner with his collection of trinkets
- The picky chef with his toque and piquant French accent.
- The confrontational Italian American gangster in his pinstripe suit from Armani, or Versace, who hides his gun in a violin case, in most cases these are from New Jersey
- The effeminate Censored page male who sings showtunes and works as an interior decorator
- The man-hating butch Censored page who sees male chauvinism everywhere
- The old lady who sits on the porch, reminiscing and knitting.
- The grouchy old man who yells at kids on his lawn
- The peaceful, nature-loving Indian who always speaks with terms relating to animals.
- The violent, savage (American) Indian warrior or scalper.
- The drunken (American) [[Native American|Indian] in an Indian Reserve Casino.
- The drunken Irishman.
- The hyperactive, hickish Australian who is always wearing brown shorts.
- The wise and otherworldly African-American who helps a white character in crisis.
- The African-American woman, called Laqueesha and whose boyfriend is a hip-hop singer called Jamaal.
- The greedy, stingy Jew.
- The greedy, stingy Scotsman.
- The uneducated hick (American) Southerner, a white trash redneck, playing the Banjo in a rocking chair on the porch next to a rifle and with a big Navy Jack hanging back him.
- The Australian in the blue singlet, denim shorts, sandals and corked hat , drinking a can of Fosters
- The ill-tempered father who antagonizes his daughter's boyfriend
- The disdainful mother-in-law wondering how her child ended marrying such a failure.
- The Frenchman with striped shirt, beret and onions - see Onion Johnnie
- The lone, nameless gunslinger
- The fat German wearing a green pair of lederhosen, a bowtie, and a jaunty hat with a feather, carrying a beer stein in one hand and a frankfurter in the other (or possibly an accordion), who may also yodel.
- The smart, hardworking, quiet Asian American - see Model minority
- Giuseppe or Luigi, the italian chef, commonly with the catch phrase, "That's a spicy meatball!" or " Oh, for the love of Pizza!"
- The fat, bearded man who breathes through his nose with a loud, heavy snuffle and walks with a funny, accentuated waddle despite being over six feet tall
- The Arab terrorist with no concept of hygiene
- The psychological and social role of stereotypes http://samvak.tripod.com/stereotype.html
- Suite 101: Shark Tale stereotypes troubling: CNYU Professor http://www.suite101.com/article.cfm/17172/111173
In computing, a stereotype is a concept in the Unified Modeling Language, where it is used to encapsulate behaviors. Thus, a stereotype is used as a vehicle for communicating software requirements and designs, and lacks the negative connotation present in general usage.
Last updated: 02-07-2005 07:56:32
Last updated: 05-02-2005 11:54:01