Images of social groups: Categorical or qualified?

Mary R. Jackman, Mary Scheuer Senter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


This paper makes a direct empirical assessment of the way Americans go about describing social groups in three important intergroup contexts-race, gender, and social class. Results from a national survey indicate that when respondents are given the opportunity to express themselves in a relatively unconstrained format, qualified images of groups generally prevail over categorical descriptions. Further, the amount and pattern of categorical thinking vary considerably across the three intergroup contexts, reflecting the different kinds of group images that underly race, gender, and social class relations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-361
Number of pages21
JournalPublic Opinion Quarterly
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1980


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