Dictionary: “A stereotype is a fixed general image or set of characteristics that a lot of people believe represent a particular type of person or thing”
Social psychology, stereotyping refers to the inference that an individual possesses a certain range of characteristics and abilities that has been correlated with the group we perceive that person to be a part of.
Stereotypes carry emotional value, meaning that when they are activated they make us feel in a certain way about the group and its member(s). Informing our actions and behaviours based on stereotypes can lead to discrimination and even those who explicitly work to dismantle them can still be affected by them implicitly!
So, why do we stereotype if it can lead to discriminatory behaviour and why is it difficult even for those who do not subscribe to stereotypes to unroot them from our unconsious?