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About the Stigma

In: Social Issues

Submitted By LunaSama
Words 1734
Pages 7
About the Stigma
In essence, stigma is a kind of negative label on some individuals or groups, which has a serious impact on them that stigmatized people always suffered unfair treatment and were marked as unworthy. As is known to us, stigma is always connected with the lower social situation, poverty, disability, homosexuality and some other situation, and it jumps into professionals’ sigh since last decade, which means stigma has been considered as a serious social problem finally, and there is an upward tendency of people pay more attention on it.
What is stigma?
“The term stigma comes from ancient Greece, where it meant a ‘bodily sign designed to expose something unusual and bad about the moral status of [an individual].’” (Rosenblum & Travis, Framwork , 2012)This is the origin of stigma, and it is like an old penalty in ancient China that criminals were forced to be painted a tattoo on their face before they were exiled. It seems that ancient people were using similar ways to distinguish and mark people who were “bad”.
And then, Goffman brought the word stigma into sociology to define the situation that some people are judged and classified into a group as unworthy because of their disability, race, sex, sexual orientation or some other social categories else.
The first step of stigma is to classify the so-called unusual people to another group and naming them to show the difference, such as “gay”, “lesbian”, “black” and so on. And then, stigmatized people or group is suffering a lot of stereotypes in their daily life. There are five common stereotypes introduced in the text book. It is obvious that people marked them as “lack of value”, “problem”, “lack of self-control”, “antagonistic extremes of intelligence”, and “savagely brutal”. Overall, discrimination and unfair treatment are filled with their life.
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