"Psychologists have found a strong negative correlation between shame and self-esteem. People who feel ashamed, or who are subjected to shaming experiences, tend to form chronically low opinions of themselves. Those with chronically low self-esteem tend to at- tribute bad outcomes to their own failures. They also tend to focus on negative information that reinforces the idea of their social unacceptability. When researchers exposed people with low self-esteem to words like unwanted, ignored, rejected, disliked, shunned, rebuffed, neglected, excluded, avoided, isolated, condemned, and disapproved, those individuals showed slower response times on a basic thinking task. The lesson echoes Du Bois. If you are constantly told that you are a problem, you eventually feel that you are a problem; and the more you feel like a problem, the more you notice negative feedback. It is harder to concentrate because you are working to manage the psychological effects of feeling ashamed. In this way, social rejection shapes experiences of the self and the world."
Melissa Harris-Perry, Sister Citizen (via brutereason)