Perceptions of Sexual Harassment Perpetrators: The Mediating Role of Identification and Emotions

Anna Nichola Christie (2010). Perceptions of Sexual Harassment Perpetrators: The Mediating Role of Identification and Emotions Honours Thesis, School of Psychology, The University of Queensland.

       
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Author Anna Nichola Christie
Thesis Title Perceptions of Sexual Harassment Perpetrators: The Mediating Role of Identification and Emotions
School, Centre or Institute School of Psychology
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2010
Thesis type Honours Thesis
Supervisor Renata Bongiorno
Total pages 66
Language eng
Subjects 380100 Psychology
Abstract/Summary Within sexual harassment and rape literature victims are often blamed to some degree for their misfortune. Victim characteristics have been extensively researched; however there is a dearth in research on perceptions of perpetrators. This study examines the issue from a social identity perspective, and proposes that men will identify more with a perpetrator than women, will feel more empathy and less anger and disgust towards a perpetrator, will evaluate his characteristics more positively, will engage in reinterpretation of the perpetrators behaviour in order to excuse his behaviour, and will blame the perpetrator less and the victim more than women. Additionally this effect was expected to be attenuated for men when the perpetrator was Canadian (outgroup member) and enhanced when he was Australian (ingroup member). Australian university students (N = 167) read a scenario where a male student (Canadian or Australian) harasses a female student, and then responded to a questionnaire assessing their perceptions of the perpetrator and the events as well as their emotional reactions. Gender differences were found for perpetrator blame and victim derogation, and the relationship between gender and these variables was mediated by identification, anger and disgust. No effect of perpetrator nationality was found.

 
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Created: Tue, 05 Apr 2011, 11:08:43 EST by Lucy O'Brien on behalf of School of Psychology