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Please tell me the meaning of stereotype in the following passage

Reflexes: This is the behaviour in which movement takes place in a particular organ. This movement is very fast, stereotype, and for a short duration such as knee jerk, blinking of eyes and withdrawal of hand from a hot place".

This is a behavioral science term, not sociological.

Edit: Thank you everyone for the reply. Finally I got the answer from Britannica - Stereotyped response

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    That depends: do you mean as a noun or as a verb? What definition did you find for it? – John Clifford Mar 29 '16 at 8:26
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    Can you provide the meaning which was given in the dictionary and tell why you didn't understand the meaning? Stereotype basically means a widely held fixed opinion about a person or a thing. You most often hear negative stereotype, like All women are bad drivers which is not true. There are also positive stereotypes. It is just a preconceived notion. – Nagarajan Shanmuganathan Mar 29 '16 at 8:26
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    Stereotype: a fixed idea or image that many people have of a particular type of person or thing, but which is often not true in reality cultural/gender/racial stereotypes: He doesn't conform to the usual stereotype of the businessman with a dark suit and briefcase. oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/definition/english/stereotype_1 – user66974 Mar 29 '16 at 8:26
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    Searching Google for the quoted passage finds only this question. Is it transcribed correctly? Is it actually written in English or is this a translation? Please provide a reference (book title and author at a minimum). – Andrew Leach Mar 29 '16 at 16:15
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    You're all looking at the sociological meaning of the word stereotype, but the quotation shows that it is the zoological sense that is being queried. I have an answer, but we need to re-open it so that I can post it. – Cyberherbalist Mar 29 '16 at 16:15
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@GEdgar got it before me, but yes, that's what it means here in context!

The noun for this is stereotypy:

In animal behavior, stereotypy, stereotypical or stereotyped behavior has several meanings, leading to ambiguity in the scientific literature. The terms usually refer to stereotypy, repetitive behaviors in captive animals, particularly those given inadequate mental stimulation.

It's also described for human use HERE in the Free Dictionary.

  • You know... I don't think this is the right answer. Knee jerks, eye blinking, backing away from fire all "fast" reactions, perfectly normal among all species, and are usually described as "reflexes". There's nothing abnormal or obsessively repetitive about these "instinctual" movements. – Mari-Lou A Mar 29 '16 at 17:33
  • @Mari-LouA you might be right about the correct usage of stereotypy in the quoted text -- that's a technical matter with respect to the book in which the quote is found. But I still maintain that the usage, as such, is referring to stereotypy. Regardless of whether the quote is telling the truth. We're not judging the validity of the text, but rather what it means. – Cyberherbalist Mar 29 '16 at 18:01
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Oxford English Dictionary

stereotype, n. and adj.
A. n.
3. fig.
c. Zool. A stereotyped action or series of actions performed by an animal

  • @Mari-LouA, I think the original quoted text, if an accurate quote, uses the term stereotype incorrectly, i.e. as a noun. It probably should have been stereotypical, the adjectival form. See my answer for some detail and reference to Wikipedia on the subject. Stereotypy is the zoological term for the condition. – Cyberherbalist Mar 29 '16 at 16:35
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Assuming you mean to understand the word stereotype used in sociology, let me quote from FumbleFingers:

stereotype - is a preconceived and oversimplified idea of the characteristics which typify a person, situation, etc.; an attitude based on such a preconception. Also, a person who appears to conform closely to the idea of a type.

I prefer not to be known by my friends to be using stereotypes rather than studying and analyzing the facts closely. It is when one classifies a group of people or things, and this can make the picture one has of that group quite inaccurate.

It can be used as a noun or a verb. Example for stereotype as a verb: "to form a fixed and often untrue or only partly true idea about". You can also 'stereotype' a group of people 'with' an assumption.

It's unfair to stereotype people according to where they live.

It's not fair to stereotype a whole group of people based on one person you don't like.

Movies have stereotyped the hooker with a heart of gold ad nauseam.

Example as a noun and this is quoting from Dictionary.com:

The black community cannot pretend that the stereotype of black men as violent comes out of nowhere.

Sometimes looking at the adjective or derivatives would help understand and use the a term correctly.

Quoting from Urban Dictionary about Stereotypical:

A stereotypical person is one who is the image of a stereotype. It is NOT (I repeat, NOT!!!!) a person who believes that stereotypes are true. Only a stereotypical foreigner would think this, because the stereotype of foreigners is that they are bad at English.

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