Definition: having a bias for or against
Characters in Literature: Elizabeth Bennet (Pride and Prejudice), The Malfoys, most of Maycomb County (To Kill a Mockingbird)
Common Portrayals: the old South, white supremacists, Nazi Germany, judges and juries, crooked cops. I tried to also list groups of people who are commonly prejudiced against, but the list went on and on and on. And for every group that is misjudged, there’s an opposing group doing the judging. So really, just about any people group can be the victim or purveyor of prejudice.
Clichés to Avoid: the backwoods hick, prejudice in the small town, prejudice described as ignorance or closed-mindedness (however true either may be)
Twists on the Traditional Prejudiced Character:
▪ The prejudiced character who is well-learned and highly intelligent instead of ignorant
▪ Instead of applying prejudice against a race or nationality, have your character judge another based on a simple character trait (like Elizabeth Bennet in Pride or Prejudice). Your character might judge a shy person to be stuck-up, misjudge kindness for manipulation, or dismiss a popular person out of an assumption that they’re superficial.
▪ To my knowledge, the prejudiced person in literature is always portrayed as wrong. But what if the rest of society was wrong and the prejudiced person was right?
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