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Psicologia: Teoria e Pesquisa

Print version ISSN 0102-3772On-line version ISSN 1806-3446


MENIN, Maria Suzana de Stefano. Social representation and stereotypes: the Mute Zone of the social representations. Psic.: Teor. e Pesq. [online]. 2006, vol.22, n.1, pp.43-51. ISSN 0102-3772.

In this paper, departing from the definition of the concept of Mute Zone of the social representations, we describe the techniques of substitution and normative descontextualization developed by the school of Aix-en-Provence to disclose the hidden or masked representations due to its inadequacy to the social norms in force in the reference group of the people that answered the questionnaires. Next, we report the first studies carried out with the intention to reveal representative elements of the Mute Zone of representations and the current studies about this concept and we describe and discuss three possible explanations for the change of representations in situations of substitution or normative descontextualization: the projection of the representations that are condemnable by the social norms to other groups of representation when the subject persons speak on behalf of other groups and not by themselves; the effect of the transparency of representations when the representations of known groups are described; the effect of the social influence of norms or proeminent representations in the group where they belong.

Keywords : social representations; mute zone of the representations; stereotypes; prejudice.

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