On all of my bus rides and walking around the city, I've noticed the diversity in the way people around me look (clothing, makeup, etc.). I also caught myself naturally making my own assumptions about the lives of these people that I don’t even know. It seems to be in the basic human nature to make assumptions or place judgements upon people just based on how they look. This is particularly true of people that stand out in society, or those that could be considered “unique”. In this series, I look at those that stand out in society and what kind of assumptions are made about them based on their appearance.
The first person chose the next person, that person chose the next person, and so on. The goal with this chain of people-choosing was to get as long of a chain as possible in the time allotted (4 hours) in order to see patterns form and this human nature come to light. After people chose their person, they were to write down an answer to the prompt:
“Please write why the person you chose stood out to you and include assumptions you formed about their personality, hobbies, school major, etc. just from looking at them (ex. likes country music, art student, partier, shops a lot, etc.).”
By comparing what people write about who they chose and why, the human nature of making assumptions based simply on appearance comes to light and one can begin to question their own judgement of the people around them.
**Below, hover over the 'i' symbol on each image to read what was written.**
He was sitting alone and was older in the university setting. Was wearing all black and had a laptop. Was a suburban white dad. Math student or finishing degree.
I felt Ariane was from another nation. In order for the assignment I also felt that people of differing culture[s], skin color[s], and hair would be a wonderful offering. We also found that Ariane grew up in Zambia. It shows – beautiful!
I approached [Carrie] because she looked friendly and seemed not busy.
She looked like a friendly person. She seems like a party girl type who likes to shop. I would guess her major is in business?
Sam looked very approachable and had a really cool style. She stuck out for her clothes and accessories and was extremely nice when we started talking to her.
-His boots are awesome. -He has the same color hair as me. -He has a nice smile.
I saw him from afar; the sun gleaming off his beautifully polished crown. He was conversing with an equally friendly-looking woman, and so I decided to make my approach…as expected he willingly partook.
I chose her because I knew her and we have great conversations. -Know, both veterans <— fun fact.
I chose him because he is very well dressed and didn’t look busy at all.
-Nice jacket. -Looked calm/relaxed. -Nice. -Cool scarf.
I [chose] him because I like his outfit, mixing patterns with scarf and shirt. I also liked his glasses and bright blonde hair.
First and foremost, because I needed to find someone willing to do it. But furthermore, because of her interesting and original clothing choices.