A recent study on prejudice has made important findings – that racial tolerance and trust can spread within communities as fast as suspicion.
Researchers in the USA created a programme which works to quickly build a strong bond between two people from diverse racial groups, including black, white, Asian and Latino.
The new cross-cultural relationships had a remarkable effect on the two people involved – each one’s score on tests for prejudice became significantly lower.
What’s more, related studies showed that one new cross-group relationship can improve relations between groups from different cultural backgrounds which have a history of mutual mistrust.
Similarly, when the study was extended to a class of students, researchers found that ‘merely being in the same class where other interracial pairs were interacting can reduce levels of prejudice’. Read more in this article from the International Herald Tribune.
So, reaching out to someone from a different ethnic background might seem like a small step in making the world a more friendly place. But the effects could go further than you realise.
About the authorLucy