Prejudice from self or from another can lead to depression, says a new study. William Cox and colleagues of the University of Wisconsin -Madison suggest that there exists a link between prejudice and depression.
The scientists argue that stereotyping others and the consequent prejudice, and the kind of impressions that take shape about the Self which lead to depression, are fundamentally similar. The depression caused by prejudice - referred to as "deprejudice" by the scientists — can occur at different levels. Similarly, the prejudice shown by an abuser towards an abusee causes depression in the abusee. It can occur within the Self when depression is caused within a person because of the hatred he nurses towards himself!
AdvertisementThe research is based on the depression caused by negative thoughts that people have about themselves or that other people have about them. It has not taken into account "depressions caused by neurochemical, genetic or inflammatory processes."
We see many people who are depressed but to understand that some of them are depressed because they are victims of prejudice directed at the self or of others' prejudice towards them can change the way depression is being treated in these people. The researchers believe that interventions such as cognitive behavior therapy and mindfulness training, used commonly to treat depression, may be particularly useful in combating prejudice. Similarly, some of the interventions used to address prejudice can be used to deal with depression.