What is stigmatization?
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What Does stigmatization Mean
Stigmatization is a term that does not appear in the dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy ( RAE ). The concept derives from stigma , whose etymological origin is found in the Latin word stigma (referring to a mark made on the skin).
A stigma , therefore, is a mark or an imprint on the body . The notion is also used symbolically with respect to bad reputation , dishonor or injury . The verb stigmatize , on the other hand, makes mention of marking someone , either physically (with a hot metal, for example) or abstractly (through an infamy or affront).
From these definitions, we can return to the idea of stigmatization . This is the name of the process and the result of stigmatizing .
Generally speaking of stigmatization in the field of sociology . For this science, a stigma is a characteristic or an attribute that causes the individual who carries it to be considered as part of an inferior, unacceptable or negative group .
Stigmatization, in this framework, consists of attributing a trait of this type to a person or a social group. Stigmatized subjects are discriminated against and rejected , and may be victims of verbal attacks or physical abuse. In some cases the stigmatization even leads to murder.
He who stigmatizes is in charge of dehumanizing the stigmatized, whom he usually takes as a threat . It can be understood that, in this process, the stigmatizer seeks to reinforce their self-esteem , in addition to making the stigmatized guilty of their ills.
Let's see what happened with the coronavirus pandemic . Many specialists warned about the existence of a stigmatization of those who contract COVID-19 : beyond the sanitary, they are pointed out as responsible for the spread of the virus and are classified as dangerous.