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Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do PDF, ePub eBook

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Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do

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Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do PDF, ePub eBook From one of the world's leading experts on unconscious racial bias, a personal examination of one of the central controversies and culturally powerful issues of our time, and its influence on contemporary race relations and criminal justice. We do not have to be racist to be biased. With a perspective that is both scientific, investigative, and also informed by personal exp From one of the world's leading experts on unconscious racial bias, a personal examination of one of the central controversies and culturally powerful issues of our time, and its influence on contemporary race relations and criminal justice. We do not have to be racist to be biased. With a perspective that is both scientific, investigative, and also informed by personal experience, Eberhardt offers a reasoned look into the effects of implicit racial bias, ranging from the subtle to the dramatic. Racial bias can lead to disparities in education, employment, housing, and the criminal justice system--and then those very disparities further reinforce the problem. In Biased, Eberhardt reveals how even when we are not aware of bias and genuinely wish to treat all people equally, ingrained stereotypes can infect our visual perception, attention, memory, and behavior. Eberhardt's extensive work as a consultant to law enforcement, as well as a researcher with unprecedented access to data including footage from police officers' body-worn cameras, informs every aspect of her book and makes it much more than a work of social psychology. Her research occurs not just in the laboratory but in police departments, courtrooms, prisons, boardrooms, and on the street. Interviews are interwoven with memories and stories from Eberhardt's own life and family. She offers practical suggestions for reform, and takes the reader behind the scenes to police departments implementing her suggestions. Refusing to shy away from the tragic consequences of prejudice, Eberhardt addresses how racial bias is not the fault of nor restricted to a few "bad apples" in police departments or other institutions. We can see evidence of bias at all levels of society in media, education, and business practices. In Biased, Eberhardt reminds us that racial bias is a human problem--one all people can play a role in solving.

30 review for Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do

  1. 5 out of 5

    Diane S ☔

    A book for anyone who wants to know how biases are formed, how they manifest and even how our brains process them. There are examples, even from the authors own life, and studies that show how biases are used in everyday life. Statistics to back up the authors assertions, and experiments that prove the validity of the statistics. How to counter these biases, by education, training in empathy for professionals like the police, where they are daily confronted with situations that could prove deadl A book for anyone who wants to know how biases are formed, how they manifest and even how our brains process them. There are examples, even from the authors own life, and studies that show how biases are used in everyday life. Statistics to back up the authors assertions, and experiments that prove the validity of the statistics. How to counter these biases, by education, training in empathy for professionals like the police, where they are daily confronted with situations that could prove deadly. I was raised in Chicago and was well aware of much that was written within. There were places we were told to stay far away from for our own safety. Never really explained but the message was clear regardless. The author also takes us to the Charlottesville incident, so awful, so much hatred. How education is lacking in discussing past history. So many school children do not know about the Holocaust, don't know what Auschwitz was. Slavery glossed over. One can never forget what one never knew. To me this is a shameful admission. "Our experiences in the world seep into our brain over time, and without our awareness they conspire to reshape the workings of our mind." "The mistake we keep making-the mistake we all keep making-is in thinking our work is done. That whatever heroic effort we've made will keep moving us forward. That whatever progress we've seen will keep us from sliding back to burn crosses and hiding Torah scrolls." &In truth, bias has been biding it's time in an implicit world-in a place where we need not acknowledge it to ourselves or to others, even as it touches our soul and drives our behavior."

  2. 5 out of 5

    Mehrsa

    One of the best books about implicit bias I've ever read. It's both personal and data-based, warm and inviting where it needs to be and cold and honest in other parts. I would recommend this to any organization or person or group who wants to understand how bias works and how it's ok--it's not your fault.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Peter Mcloughlin

    Some nonfiction presents new Ideas and some nonfiction is well written and this book has both traits. Eberhardt whose work I was unaware until I heard her interviewed on a youtube channel is a cognitive scientist whose research area is implicit biases that we carry with us. I had heard of other studies of implicit bias but Eberhardt's gift is taking this factoid that many stored away in our science trivia collection and shows its salience in reality and why it is much more than a factoid but a Some nonfiction presents new Ideas and some nonfiction is well written and this book has both traits. Eberhardt whose work I was unaware until I heard her interviewed on a youtube channel is a cognitive scientist whose research area is implicit biases that we carry with us. I had heard of other studies of implicit bias but Eberhardt's gift is taking this factoid that many stored away in our science trivia collection and shows its salience in reality and why it is much more than a factoid but a lense to look at everything in our society from police profiling, and arrests, to education, to workplace matters. So many vital areas where pretending we are colorblind makes the problems worse. She uses down to earth and charged examples to get her point across that our implicit biases matter and even with good intentions our unconscious biases are a source of much harm and draws the direct lines from the studies to real-world incidents to illustrate her points. Even if you keep up on brain science stories and have heard of implicit bias you still need to look at this book. Context matters.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Mara

    This is the kind of informative nonfiction that I like to see -- clearly written, incorporating broad statistics and study findings with concrete examples, correlating arguments to current or historical events, and the author's use of personal anecdotes or stories told to her to make the content of her work really connect on a personal level. This is a really well executed book on implicit bias that threads the needle between acknowledging that implicit bias is something that we all inherit & This is the kind of informative nonfiction that I like to see -- clearly written, incorporating broad statistics and study findings with concrete examples, correlating arguments to current or historical events, and the author's use of personal anecdotes or stories told to her to make the content of her work really connect on a personal level. This is a really well executed book on implicit bias that threads the needle between acknowledging that implicit bias is something that we all inherit & are therefore not personally to blame for the problem's origin while still pushing individuals to do their part to change themselves & the world around them. A few of the stories really stuck with me, particularly the arc of her own son's understanding of his own perceptions of black men & how he is increasingly at the receiving end of those perceptions from others as a young black man. Would definitely recommend! I could see this working well for a book club type environment

  5. 5 out of 5

    Donna Hines

    "We do not have to be racist to be biased." A relevant, heart breaking, emotionally draining look at the heart of America's racial tensions, social inequality, confirmation bias, racial profiling, and the attitudes that are inherently ours. Social judgements affect both how we see those around us and how we perceive ourselves. Confirmation bias is the mechanism the tool allowing inaccurate beliefs to manifest and persist just as destructive as stereotypes. Racial bias leads to the capacity to do har "We do not have to be racist to be biased." A relevant, heart breaking, emotionally draining look at the heart of America's racial tensions, social inequality, confirmation bias, racial profiling, and the attitudes that are inherently ours. Social judgements affect both how we see those around us and how we perceive ourselves. Confirmation bias is the mechanism the tool allowing inaccurate beliefs to manifest and persist just as destructive as stereotypes. Racial bias leads to the capacity to do harm. It tears away at the very fabric, it pulls the perception of furtive movements . "Just as prison is reserved for those considered too dangerous to walk the streets, the death penalty -the ultimate sentence- is reserved for those deemed too evil too live." "What becomes the external proxy for internal wickedness? My research has shown that the mere physical features of black defendants can tip the scale toward execution." Racial bias is a human problem and one that needs everyone's undivided attention to solve. "Marginalized groups in countries all over the world are often discredited through animal imagery."For example Black ape association. Increasing rise has come upon dehumanization, in isolation, in societal norms rapidly changing times. In social threats, in school segregation, in bias even during real estate transactions. "Whitening the resume" is something many of color are being forced to utilize. Awareness leads to change and that is the hope for tomorrow and beyond. Thank you to Jennifer L. Eberhardt for this amazing insight as she mentions her own personal trials and tribulations within this insightful read. Thank you to the publisher and Goodreads for this early ARC in exchange for this honest review.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Tangled in Text

    This book started off great. It was fresh and thought-provoking but it seemed as it neared the end to remain focused on one race and not the sense of general bias like the first half. I am a nerd for all the studies and test results though so I remained pretty giddy throughout. I loved the analogies so much so I worked them into conversations with friends and family during the week I was reading this. I loved the example that a bias is actually a proven mental shortcoming. Our brains focus on wh This book started off great. It was fresh and thought-provoking but it seemed as it neared the end to remain focused on one race and not the sense of general bias like the first half. I am a nerd for all the studies and test results though so I remained pretty giddy throughout. I loved the analogies so much so I worked them into conversations with friends and family during the week I was reading this. I loved the example that a bias is actually a proven mental shortcoming. Our brains focus on what they deem important and fade out everything we don’t come in contact with often. That can be put towards race if we were raised in a family of one race and that is all we were surrounded by we would be able to more easily distinguish their characteristics and other races might take longer to spot the differences. That same thought process has been proven in different situations as well like a preschool teacher can more quickly tell the different between toddlers because they spend most of their time surrounded by them, but someone like me panics when I see several kids and might think they all look alike. The study results were fascinating to even test theses biases with interracial families or even a family that adopts an older kid of a different race. A real life example of this that I thought was fascinating was a bunch of black kids in China town figured out this bias years before any studies proved the results. The teenagers would snatch the purses from old Asian ladies and they wouldn’t even be wearing a mask because they knew when a line up was done, the old ladies never were able to identify who they were only a foot away from earlier that day because they complained they all looked alike. This type of bias though led to profiling as in China town all older women began to fear black males in general and that is when the problems arise.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Christy

    So honest confessions...I did not read this book fully. It was late at the library and I had to skip a few chapters! But I did read a lot of the book including the ending. ;) I think part of this decision comes from a comment on the book - there is a good deal of repetitive ideas throughout. The same studies are presented in different chapters in a way that makes you feel that the author wrote the chapters separately and didn't add a "I know I already mentioned this" type of qualifier. I also wa So honest confessions...I did not read this book fully. It was late at the library and I had to skip a few chapters! But I did read a lot of the book including the ending. ;) I think part of this decision comes from a comment on the book - there is a good deal of repetitive ideas throughout. The same studies are presented in different chapters in a way that makes you feel that the author wrote the chapters separately and didn't add a "I know I already mentioned this" type of qualifier. I also was a little disappointed in the ending. I thought there would be more ideas toward solutions or for progress. She does give an emotional compelling ending to the book. But it lacked the detailed summary of what she sees society and individuals can do to combat bias. I did learn a lot from what I read though! There is a lot of science to the way we see people and a lot of factors that come into play. It is good to realize these are features that can help us categorize and organize the circumstances, people, and experiences of our lives. But it is also a good reminder that we have to be reflective and honest as individuals so that we can call ourselves out on how history, societal forces, and the way we were brought up (even where we were brought up) may skew our perceptions and create prejudice even when we desire to be fair-minded individuals. Change starts with individuals - with me. With each of us. There is no quick fix. The problems are deep and multi-faceted but if we are willing we can rise to the challenge of "loving others as we love ourselves". We want to be judged on the things that matter. This book reminds me to ask myself how I can do that better for others.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Isabella Zink

    I watched a French movie recently called “He Even Has Your Eyes” about a black couple who adopt a white baby and face both backlash and support from members of their families and the adoption agency. In an early scene the couple sit in the waiting area underneath two photos of white couples holding a black baby and an Asian baby. By the end, a white couple sit in the waiting area under a larger photo of the film’s protagonists posing with their older child and everyone is happy. I bring up this I watched a French movie recently called “He Even Has Your Eyes” about a black couple who adopt a white baby and face both backlash and support from members of their families and the adoption agency. In an early scene the couple sit in the waiting area underneath two photos of white couples holding a black baby and an Asian baby. By the end, a white couple sit in the waiting area under a larger photo of the film’s protagonists posing with their older child and everyone is happy. I bring up this movie because I think it highlights aspects of implicit bias purely from the fact that this situation is “other” —a majority of the adoptions I’m familiar with (in the media, anecdotally, etc. ) feature a white couple and a baby of a different race. In this movie, I experienced a level of cognitive dissonance purely because this was a situation that had really not crossed my mind, and yet I suppose I was biased on some level. One of the film’s antagonists, a social worker, was hell-bent on trying to catch the adoptive parents doing something wrong to validate her own bias instead of recognizing that these were two loving people desperate to give a child a home. At the same time, the adoptive mother’s parents are also angry about the adoption because this baby does not fit the mental image they had of their grandson. The point, I think, goes along with Eberhardt’s statement that you don’t have to be racist to be biased. This movie’s simple premise was enough to make me slow down and acknowledge a bias I didn’t expect to crop up and that has no basis in personal experience or association. After reading this book I can appreciate the importance of thinking through reactions like this in an effort to fix them. Overall, this book does a great job pointing out the biological and sociological origins of out-group bias, how it pervades our society, and gives some insight into how to combat it.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jillian Doherty

    The partial manuscript available was such a good taste - and even when the full book is ready I have a feeling it will still leave you wanting more. The well researched and experienced examples of our natural bias are indeed groundbreaking; these experiences are not new and revolutionary moments in time - they are mind-bending because they are so familiar and evergreen struggles. Eberhardt brings us to the heart of the issues with a personal voice and detailed understanding of being ripped from The partial manuscript available was such a good taste - and even when the full book is ready I have a feeling it will still leave you wanting more. The well researched and experienced examples of our natural bias are indeed groundbreaking; these experiences are not new and revolutionary moments in time - they are mind-bending because they are so familiar and evergreen struggles. Eberhardt brings us to the heart of the issues with a personal voice and detailed understanding of being ripped from car from a bias police officer, to rediscovering what freedom means alongside a San Quentin inmate she taught. This is the kind of read we desperately need. Galley borrowed from the publisher.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Matt

    Our perception of immigrants is so tied to fear of disease and an assumption of dirtiness that in a study of participants during a period of a flu epidemic, there was a significant difference in negative opinions towards immigrants between those participants who had been vaccinated and those who hadn’t. “Their sense of vulnerability to disease was tied to unacknowledged fears about infected immigrants“. In “Bias: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do”, Jennifer L Our perception of immigrants is so tied to fear of disease and an assumption of dirtiness that in a study of participants during a period of a flu epidemic, there was a significant difference in negative opinions towards immigrants between those participants who had been vaccinated and those who hadn’t. “Their sense of vulnerability to disease was tied to unacknowledged fears about infected immigrants“. In “Bias: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do”, Jennifer L. Eberhardt explores the psychology behind implicit bias, the unconscious automatic associations that we apply towards people according to the viewers’ perception of race. Implicit bias can present itself in a relatively benign fashion such as through the “other-race effect” (the difficulty of a person from one ethnicity to remember or recognize the face of a person from a different ethnicity), but it can also lead to outright prejudicial treatment of certain marginalized groups. This is played out in the United States most severely in the frequent violent and often deadly encounters experienced by members of the black community with police officers. Eberhardt gracefully moves between the academic and the deeply personal when addressing these troubling topics. From studies demonstrating an innate “black-crime association” in the minds of whites and police officers to other studies that show that whites perceive black faces that are neutral to instead be hostile, the picture swiftly begins to form of how biological and societal biases have poisoned a police officers’ perception of an interaction with a person of color outside of the presence of any overt racial hatred. Much of our policing and retributive criminal justice system seeks to punish those with internal wickedness, but the author deftly demonstrates that the way we perceive black people externally leads us to assume internal wickedness. Eberhardt’s work does not solely focus on policing, there are valuable sections on health, education, and employment (and one section on the tragic Nazi marches in Charlottesville that while interesting, I felt was out of place), but it is clear that the main thrust of her book is an attempt to find some understanding in why so many interactions between the black community and the police end in violence. Eberhardt has taken an immensely challenging subject and allowed her personal experiences to guide the reader through what could have been too heavy a read for the audience. I think she hit the right balance and will personally carry many of the book’s lessons with me as I seek to challenge my own hidden prejudices that I wish to bring to light and purge. (A copy of this book was generously provided to me from Viking through Goodreads Giveaways)

  11. 4 out of 5

    Rob Haworth

    This book is an examination of implicit bias: what it is, where it comes from, how it affects us, and how we can address it. The book is enlightening for those who think that they themselves have no implicit bias, because the studies that Eberhardt describes destroy that illusion. Strengths of the book in my opinion are: 1. The book is persuasively written concerning the existence of implicit bias, being drawn from Eberhardt’s own research and the research of others. 2. The book is engagingly writ This book is an examination of implicit bias: what it is, where it comes from, how it affects us, and how we can address it. The book is enlightening for those who think that they themselves have no implicit bias, because the studies that Eberhardt describes destroy that illusion. Strengths of the book in my opinion are: 1. The book is persuasively written concerning the existence of implicit bias, being drawn from Eberhardt’s own research and the research of others. 2. The book is engagingly written, being illustrated by many stories and examples, that she then uses the research to give insight into. 3. As a black female academic who advises law enforcement, Eberhardt writes from both personal experience and with a sympathetic understanding of the perspective of the police who have to deal with the risks of interaction with the public. 4. The book not only establishes the existence of implicit bias, but also identifies several actions shown to be effective in combating its effects: for example, training, personal interactions between people of diverse ethnicity, and (in school) encouragement combined with critique, rather than just critique alone. Weaknesses of the book in my opinion are: 1. In the chapter “A Bad Dude” Eberhardt uses the example of the shooting of Terence Crutcher to throw light on factors that would have contributed to the over-reaction of the white female police officer when she shot him. Eberhardt delineates five factors related to implicit bias that likely contributed to that tragedy. The chapter title is a quote from an observer in a helicopter who said “That looks like a bad dude”. The full quote should have been “That looks like a bad dude, (could be) he’s on something”. That is, the “bad” was that Crutcher was behaving as if he were on some kind of drug, not that he was black. Analysis of Crutcher’s blood later showed that the observer was correct: Crutcher had high levels of PCP in his blood, sufficient to cause erratic and combative behavior. Eberhardt omitted to mention this, saying only that police reported finding PCP in his car. This sixth factor would also have contributed to the elevated tension in the confrontation between the police officer and Crutcher, and should have been mentioned in the account. Her failure to do this opens Eberhard to charges of shading the story to fit her narrative. 2. Eberhard argues that racial disparities (such as the fact that a disproportionate amount of violent crime is committed by young black men) contribute to implicit bias, which then exacerbates the racial disparities, and so on. It is easy to see how this is a vicious cycle. However, as presented it implies that all that is needed to eliminate the disparities is to eliminate the effects of implicit bias. What is lacking is any consideration of other factors that could also contribute to the disparities, or of the size of the effect that implicit bias has on the disparities. This may be hard to measure. But it is the larger question that should have been asked, even though the focus of the book is on implicit bias. 3. One of the most revealing sentences in the book is about when Eberhard changed schools: “I moved from the need to hide my love for learning to a world where my identity as a learner was routinely nurtured and reinforced”. She recognizes what great dividends this paid for her. But does this speak to the failure of teachers in her previous school, or to the failure of her black community (other students) to support her avocation for learning? Eberhardt describes how teachers’ implicit bias (that black students are more likely to misbehave) can cause black students to pull back from academics, which then increases the frustration of teachers, and so on. This again (see 2 above) begs the question of the extent to which the toxic culture in her first school was the result of the implicit bias of the teachers.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Amber Nicole

    👏 Bravo! 👏 The description on the jacket of this book is vague, so I assumed when I picked this up that it was on the more "benign" (no bias is really benign) biases that we experience and participate in in our daily lives, and kind of how to counteract that. Big nope. This book certainly talks about the various forms of bias, big to small, but Dr. Eberhardt focuses on the cause and effect of bias instead. She does a wonderful job of using anecdotes to tell stories of how bias affects the lives of 👏 Bravo! 👏 The description on the jacket of this book is vague, so I assumed when I picked this up that it was on the more "benign" (no bias is really benign) biases that we experience and participate in in our daily lives, and kind of how to counteract that. Big nope. This book certainly talks about the various forms of bias, big to small, but Dr. Eberhardt focuses on the cause and effect of bias instead. She does a wonderful job of using anecdotes to tell stories of how bias affects the lives of those around us while filling those stories with facts and statistics. The amount of research discussed here makes my academic's heart flutter, haha. It's an amazing thing she's done in packing in so much research on such a depressing topic without making the book dull. I'd say this is required reading for everyone, not just Americans (although the story is told through an American lens).

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jennie

    Really well written, highly recommend for all kinds of people. Whether you know a lot about the mechanisms behind prejudice already or are just mildly interested in the topic, this is a great book that can hold your interest and give you new things to think about. Eberhardt is clearly a veteran when it comes to presenting material for all kinds of people in an interesting, engaging way. She deftly weaves personal stories into history and sociological studies in a skillful way. I found this book Really well written, highly recommend for all kinds of people. Whether you know a lot about the mechanisms behind prejudice already or are just mildly interested in the topic, this is a great book that can hold your interest and give you new things to think about. Eberhardt is clearly a veteran when it comes to presenting material for all kinds of people in an interesting, engaging way. She deftly weaves personal stories into history and sociological studies in a skillful way. I found this book to be super educational, but also weirdly enjoyable despite it being about such a heavy topic. This would be a good pick if you're trying to introduce someone to the topics of prejudice and bias.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Cynda Cat

    Read with GR group Nonfiction Book Club. Why a paltry 3 stars? This book was not written with someone with the awareness I have. I am more than familiar with the concept of in-grouping/out-group. I am a woman of indeterminate ethnicity. However, I did not find the book a complete bore. I learned of the existence of the National Memorial for Peace and Justice operated by the Equal Justice Initiative.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    Since I read a lot of psychology and social science, I've seen or read about many of the studies that Everhardt talks about here. But what made this book work for me was the fact they were presented in the context of how, why, and where we express implicit bias (which sounds like an oxymoron, but it isn't). This would be a great primer for anyone unfamiliar or unconvinced they're part of the system that keeps some members of society elevated above others.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    An excellent book. I've read a lot about racial bias and housing/employment discrimination in anthropology, but it was fascinating to read about all the social psychology studies that she references as well. Her professional and personal perspectives are both insightful. I was particularly intrigued to read about her work on implicit bias in policing.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Elsie

    "The capacity for growth comes from our willingness to reflect, to probe in search of some actionable truth." This book is overwhelming in the injustice many endure. It is difficult to read but we can change. I also found this instructive while simultaneously reading The Women Who Flew for Hitler by Clare Mulley. We have not progressed as far as we should. Chapter 9 was particularly interesting in the author's research of Charlottesville's, 2018 Unite the Right rally that the US President defend "The capacity for growth comes from our willingness to reflect, to probe in search of some actionable truth." This book is overwhelming in the injustice many endure. It is difficult to read but we can change. I also found this instructive while simultaneously reading The Women Who Flew for Hitler by Clare Mulley. We have not progressed as far as we should. Chapter 9 was particularly interesting in the author's research of Charlottesville's, 2018 Unite the Right rally that the US President defended. Trump defended his response to the violence in Charlottesville in 2017 when he said there were “very fine people on both sides.” He said the was talking about people who “felt very strongly about the monument to Robert E. Lee. A great general, whether you like it or not.” That monument was established 60 years after the Civil War. It was not erected to honor the general but the movement he represented. It is unconscionable that eugenics continues to be explicitly rallied around. The author helps the reader understand other perspectives and recognize ways that we can see our implicit bias with ways to change.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kelly 💜☕️

    4.5, rounded up This is a great social science book... very readable and well written. Audio narrated very well by the author with much passion in her voice. Thanks to San Diego County Library for the digital audio version via Libby app. [Audio: 10 hours, 25 minutes]

  19. 5 out of 5

    Sharon

    The author is a social psychologist. She describes how some prejudices are unconscious. Most are a result of seeing people as either "us" or "them". In one section she mentioned how neuroimaging shows that homeless folk are often viewed as disgusting. it is worth the read.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

    I listened to most of it and read some of it. I think this book is better read than listened to. Very much current and thorough.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kristine

    Biased by Jennifer L. Eberhardt is a free NetGalley ebook that I read in late March. As a reader, I felt a real sense of empathy, heart, and understanding with Eberhardt when she went off-script from her case study findings, training sessions, and airing cam footage. I learned about a myriad of new things, such as the ‘other-race effect'; inner categorization in a similar way to how someone would see apples; training sessions to enable police officers to recognize their own implicit bias when wor Biased by Jennifer L. Eberhardt is a free NetGalley ebook that I read in late March. As a reader, I felt a real sense of empathy, heart, and understanding with Eberhardt when she went off-script from her case study findings, training sessions, and airing cam footage. I learned about a myriad of new things, such as the ‘other-race effect'; inner categorization in a similar way to how someone would see apples; training sessions to enable police officers to recognize their own implicit bias when working with the public; top & frisk actions on pedestrians often being instigated by furtive movements; a hyper-vigilant, biased group called the Riders who would plant drugs on innocent citizens of Oakland, then assault and arrest them; police officers being triggered by announcement of Male Black on CB radios; the Starbucks arrest; and racism towards POC employees in senior living facilities. Looking back, I would've wanted to learn more and read more contact, but maybe with history to start off with, then police training sessions filtered within it, then more about the present-day to cap off the end, and offering future implications.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    This book was accessible, thought provoking, and so timely. It is well grounded in research, and very readable. I highly recommend it. And make sure that you have someone to discuss it with!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Emily Meacham

    A very well-written book, but my moderate rating is only because it was not the book that I thought it was going to be. I was hoping for more of an analysis of "why" we are implicitly biased and how we might try to overcome that, but this book was more of a chronicle of examples of implicit bias. And that's an excellent subject, albeit incredibly and overwhelmingly sad and frustrating. I was just looking for some "answers" and help as to how we can start to work on our own implicit biases, and I A very well-written book, but my moderate rating is only because it was not the book that I thought it was going to be. I was hoping for more of an analysis of "why" we are implicitly biased and how we might try to overcome that, but this book was more of a chronicle of examples of implicit bias. And that's an excellent subject, albeit incredibly and overwhelmingly sad and frustrating. I was just looking for some "answers" and help as to how we can start to work on our own implicit biases, and I didn't get much on that subject.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Martin

    Excellent book. Everyone needs to read this book!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Cristie Underwood

    This was a great read, as it was based on facts and backed up those facts with statistics. The author laid out the information in a way that was not confrontational. A great read!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Eustacia Tan

    One of the things I try to be aware of is bias. It was something taught in school (always look at the bias for various news sources to see how they would want things to appear) and it became something that stuck. So when I heard about Biased, a book on implicit racial bias, I knew that I had to read it. Biased is a hard book to read because it deals with the difficult topic of race. Through ten chapters, Jennifer Eberhardt takes us through how and why we see people with biased eyes (even if we ar One of the things I try to be aware of is bias. It was something taught in school (always look at the bias for various news sources to see how they would want things to appear) and it became something that stuck. So when I heard about Biased, a book on implicit racial bias, I knew that I had to read it. Biased is a hard book to read because it deals with the difficult topic of race. Through ten chapters, Jennifer Eberhardt takes us through how and why we see people with biased eyes (even if we are not intentionally trying to do so) and how we might overcome this. Basically, it’s human nature for us to categorise things and people that we don’t often see are often lumped together in a group, while we’re able to differentiate between members of our own group. While this may be natural, seeing people this way is often harmful, as Eberhardt convincingly argues as she uses data and personal examples to show how this implicit bias destroys trust between various communities (such as African Americans and the police), leading to disastrous situations. Despite the fact that race is an extremely charged topic, especially in America, Eberhardt manages to stay fair and balanced to both communities in her book. She shows the pain and fear that African Americans go through when they’re stopped by the police, but also talks about how her interactions with the police has shown her that they feel that the police are the only ones who care in a hostile community (when to that community, they are staying silent for their own protection). The data, in fact, can be used by both sides, as she writes that “the same disparities that community leaders view as proof of racial profiling can be cited by police officers as proof of who is most likely to commit crimes.” Personally, I hope that Biased is just the start of her published works on implicit bias. This book focuses on America, and on the relationship between African Americans and Caucasians in particular. That’s a huge and weighty topic, but as someone from outside America, I’d be interested in exploring how implicit bias shows up in different parts of the world. For example, she mentions in the book that the Irish have managed to assimilate into society as “white” people, and in the latter half of the book, she mentions increasing anti-semitism as stripping Jewish people of their “whiteness”. But there isn’t much discussion into the shibboleths used to distinguish these groups of people from other Caucasian people (to my un-American eye, I would not be able to tell if someone was Jewish or Irish or Anglo-Saxon just by looking at them) or discussions about the negative associations that people have with these groups, the way she talks about how African American skin tones and names are unfairly associated with aggression and other negative traits. In fact, if a next book could go into different countries where Caucasians are not the majority and look at implicit bias there, I think it would really help in getting a more generalised view of how implicit bias works and manifests in different cultures. That said, everything in the previous paragraph is just my wish for future books. As it stands, Biased is an amazing book that manages to deal with the tough topic of race and implicit bias (no one likes to hear that they may be a racist, after all) with great sensitivity while using data. If you’re interested in racial tensions in America, this is a book that you’ll want to read. This review was first posted at Eustea Reads

  27. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    Author Eberhardt is a Social Psychologist who was born and raised in Northeast Ohio. She is Harvard educated and lives on the West Coast, AND she really knows her stuff! I learned A LOT from this well-researched book and Eberhardt included many personal examples to keep the text flowing and interesting. I don't say this very often, but this whole entire book is worth the read. It was hard to pick out tidbits that I thought deserved more emphasis than others, but here are a few basic pieces of inf Author Eberhardt is a Social Psychologist who was born and raised in Northeast Ohio. She is Harvard educated and lives on the West Coast, AND she really knows her stuff! I learned A LOT from this well-researched book and Eberhardt included many personal examples to keep the text flowing and interesting. I don't say this very often, but this whole entire book is worth the read. It was hard to pick out tidbits that I thought deserved more emphasis than others, but here are a few basic pieces of information that I think are worth mentioning: First, we are [ALL} inherently wired for bias. But the problem with narrowly settling for that perspective it that it can lead us to care less about the danger associated with bias, instead of more. Bias is not black and white (pun intended). When something is regarded as the "norm," people cease to judge it harshly. Instead they are not only inclined to believe that this norm is "just the way things are," they are inclined to believe that this is they was things SHOULD BE. Essentially, there is less motivation to change. The brain is not a hard-wired machine. Eberhardt says, "Rather it is a malleable organ that responds to the environment we are placed in and the challenges we face." One of the most intriguing parts (Read sit up and take notice) of this book was when Eberhardt said that for nearly 50 years, scientists have been documenting that people are much better at recognizing faces of their own race than faces of other races. This phenomena is called the "Other Race Effect." It's a universal issue and it shows up in different racial groups across the United States and around the world. It appears in babies as early as THREE MONTHS - their brains react more strongly to faces of their own race than to the faces of people who are unlike them - this intensifies over time as the child ages. That cringe worthy phrase, "They all look alike." has long been considered the province of the bigot, but it is actually a function of biology and exposure. Our brains are better at processing faces that evoke a sense of familiarity. Also, although not racial in nature, this sense of familiarity can also trigger a negative response from people, especially babies, who are not used to seeing men with beards or other facial hair and vice versa. There are many types of bias, categorizations and stereotypes that are examined in this book. Unfortunately, people tend to seek out and pay closer attention to information that already confirms their beliefs. The discussions on Employment Discrimination, especially with regards to race and gender was engrossing. I really learned a lot about discrimination based on a name (trying to make a resume sound more white or using a name that is more gender neutral) and that this is not just an issue in the U.S. The discussion about opportunities for blacks vs whites was most interesting. I also found the piece on blind auditioning for a symphony orchestra, riveting. I had no idea! This is not in my wheelhouse, so I never gave it any thought, and really, as a woman, I should have! Also, judgments of women in the labor force have little to do with professional competence. Instead, women are often judged on their weight, appearance, hairstyle, style of dress, etc. A strong-willed man is a leader, an outspoken woman is difficult ... I highly recommend this to everyone!

  28. 5 out of 5

    LuAnne Feik

    Stereotypes, according to Dr. Eberardt's research, serve as a useful way to simplify the confusing signals each of us receives every day. But classification discounts reality and dangerously ignores the individuality genetics researcher, Robert Plomin, describes in BLUEPRINT: How DNA Makes Us Who We Are. The mix of parental DNA in each person produces personality traits that affect how others react to us and how we perceive the environment. Michelle and Barack Obama are both black, but she grew u Stereotypes, according to Dr. Eberardt's research, serve as a useful way to simplify the confusing signals each of us receives every day. But classification discounts reality and dangerously ignores the individuality genetics researcher, Robert Plomin, describes in BLUEPRINT: How DNA Makes Us Who We Are. The mix of parental DNA in each person produces personality traits that affect how others react to us and how we perceive the environment. Michelle and Barack Obama are both black, but she grew up in an enclave of professional and well-educated African-Americans in Chicago. He spent his early childhood among colored kids in Indonesia and his teenage years with white grandparents and upscale white students in Hawaii's elite high school. Not only did he lack the bias that causes lighter blacks to avoid dating and marrying women blacker than themselves, but he also was not deterred from running for president because some biased white men would never vote for or accept him in that position. In 2008, no black women ran for president; one has the personality and perception of the 2020 environment as ready for the first. The reality is, for one reason or another, some blacks, whites, browns, reds, and yellows fit stereotypes, and some don't. Dr. Eberhardt trains police officers to avoid the bias of classifying all blacks as criminals. Yet, they cannot avoid the reality of being prepared to prevent being killed by the black or white drivers they stop, in the domestic violence situations they approach, and when they serve arrest warrants. Accusing all white people of bias against blacks easily slips over the racial divide and excuses blacks for their lack of progress and justifies their own bias against whites. Jewish people and various ethnic immigrants have not let discrimination hold them back. Excluded from other professional fields and organizations, women became teachers and established their own organizations. The personal experiences Dr. Eberhardt uses to substantiate her position reminded me of a couple of recent examples of school incidents in Madison, Wisconsin, where I live. A white male teacher who stayed after school to work in his classroom was disturbed by three black girls uploading a video of themselves dancing and lip syncing to music in the hall outside his door. When he asked them to leave, they had a few choice things to say and didn't move. Confrontation escalated and a police officer was called. One of the girls employed the latest terminology administrators devised to explain and improve the school's racial relations and told the officer the teacher was suffering from "white fragility" and she felt "unsafe." In another school incident, a student called her mother to report a teacher hit her. Fortunately, the camera installed in the playground to protect students from unwanted visitors recorded the way the teacher had raised her hand to save the girl from being hit in the head by a tether ball. After seeing the film, the mother apologized, but originally her bias against a white teacher prevented her from considering the possible inaccuracy of her daughter's charge. Everyone with bias makes too many mistakes about the individuals they encounter every day.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Priscilla (Bookie Charm)

    You don't have to be racist to be biased. This is the kind of nonfiction that I love. This is an examination of the implicit bias that affects us all from Dr. Jennifer L. Eberhardt, a leading expert of social psychology from Stanford University. Eberhardt does a wonderful job of balancing out data based research and personal anecdote. Eberhardt works with the Oakland police department as a consultant to ease police relationships with a historically criminalized community along with teaching at You don't have to be racist to be biased. This is the kind of nonfiction that I love. This is an examination of the implicit bias that affects us all from Dr. Jennifer L. Eberhardt, a leading expert of social psychology from Stanford University. Eberhardt does a wonderful job of balancing out data based research and personal anecdote. Eberhardt works with the Oakland police department as a consultant to ease police relationships with a historically criminalized community along with teaching at San Quentin correctional facility. Because of her unique experiences and expertise, this book focuses on the historical precedence of racial prejudice and its tragic consequences. Eberhardt makes a very important point early on that racial bias are not the fault of a few but of everyone at all levels of society. "People hold biases on all sorts of characteristics - skin, color, age, weight, ethnic origin, accent, disability, height, gender." However, she focuses on the disparity between blacks and whites because these are the two groups most researched and these tensions are the most enduring and the most consequential. Her personal anecdotes really helped put these psychological theories in perspective. For instance, the mechanics of bias are fairly simple in terms of categorization. Our brains can't process all of the constant stimuli that we face day to day so we subconsciously group people and attach preconceived beliefs to these groups. This leads to stereotyping processes and can result in inaccurate associations and actions. Then Eberhardt will follow up with a conversation with her son. "Mommy, do you think people see black people as different from white people?....I think it's fear." It's a supremely effective method in nonfiction. This book cover a variety of topics related to race relations. Eberhardt looks at studies revolving the ability to recognize and differentiate people's face of difference races, systematic residential segregation and education, and then the ramifications of these systems in procedural justice. "Our brains, our culture, our instincts, all lead us to use color as a sorting tool." The notion of a color blind American society is so engrained in our culture but its ineffective in supporting racial equality. College students on the job market have adapted assimilative techniques to whiten their resumes and tone down any specific details that could point to a non-white identity. Asian students use their English American names and Black students restrict any mention of involvement with black organizations. There's so much to unpack but the information is so well presented. While the book flap leads you to believe that Eberhardt has a resolution to these issues - it isn't quite clear. "Success requires us to be willing to tolerate that discomfort as we learn to communicate, get to know one another, and make deeper efforts to shift the underlying cultures that lead to bias and exclusion." In short, addressing underlying bias isn't a personal problem but it should be a social agenda. Technology and data are helping expose more explicit bias but we all have the capacity to make lasting change.

  30. 5 out of 5

    cat

    How do we end racism and systems of white supremacy? That question has been at the forefront for authors, thinkers, organizers, and activists for generations - including my colleagues, my community, and my self. The discussions of racism often tend to focus on personal rather than systemic or institutional issues. It is far more common for us to imagine racism as an individual flaw or belief system, and it *is* that, yet that individual manifestation of privilege and oppression is only one pilla How do we end racism and systems of white supremacy? That question has been at the forefront for authors, thinkers, organizers, and activists for generations - including my colleagues, my community, and my self. The discussions of racism often tend to focus on personal rather than systemic or institutional issues. It is far more common for us to imagine racism as an individual flaw or belief system, and it *is* that, yet that individual manifestation of privilege and oppression is only one pillar of the current system of white privilege and supremacy that we live under. This book paints such a clear picture of the ways that the cycle of personal, institutional, and structural racism is both embedded in, and constantly embedding, bias. Our communities and structures and institutions are made up of individuals. We can't have structural racism without individual racism - and vice versa. Individual perception is a part of the larger system of bias that begets structural racism. And Jennifer Eberhardt does an amazing job of illuminating EXACTLY how that cycle of racism works- making clear the ways that bias on an individual level can create racist policy, for example. And her examples are both evidence-based research AND also deeply personal, making this book a compelling read. As the NYTimes review says, "Eberhardt gives striking examples from her research of how racial categories and stereotypes affect perception. In one study, she and her colleagues found that people’s brains were more active when they were looking at a face from someone of their own racial group. This, Eberhardt says, helps to explain why people sometimes do poorly at recognizing individuals from other groups — a finding that matters for criminal justice, where mistaken identification is common. In another study, Eberhardt examined the stereotype linking black men and crime. Police officers were asked to look at a computer screen. Half were exposed subliminally to crime-related words like “apprehend” and “capture”; these blinked for a fraction of a second. The other half was exposed to gibberish. The officers then saw two faces side by side, one black, one white. The officers who were “primed” to think about crime looked more at the black face. The same stereotype, she discovered, affects perceptions of physical movement. Analyzing data from the New York Police Department, Eberhardt learned that black men were far more likely than white men to have been stopped for engaging in what’s called “furtive movement” — suspicious behavior like fidgeting with something at your waistline. Yet among those stopped, whites more often had a weapon. The stereotype that black men are involved in crime led the police to perceive danger and illegality when there was none. Eberhardt connects the dots to national statistics showing that unarmed African-Americans are killed by the police at a higher rate than unarmed whites. The experiments and observational studies reported in “Biased” are important and illuminating. They’re brought to life by stories from Eberhardt’s own experience." https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/26/bo...

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