Tag Archive | 2007

Linking Stereotype Threat and Anxiety

Title: Linking Stereotype Threat and Anxiety

Link: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/01443410601069929

Summary: (abstract)

Claude Steele’s stereotype threat hypothesis has attracted significant attention in recent years. This study tested one of the main tenets of his theory—that stereotype threat serves to increase individual anxiety levels, thus hurting performance—using real‐time measures of physiological arousal. Subjects were randomly assigned to either high or low stereotype threat conditions involving a challenging mathematics task while physiological measures of arousal were recorded. Results showed significant physiological reactance (skin conductance, skin temperature, blood pressure) as a function of a stereotype threat manipulation. These findings are consistent with the argument that stereotype threat manipulations either increase or decrease situational‐specific anxiety, and hold significant implications for thinking about fair assessment and testing practices in academic settings.

Between Scylla and Charybdis: the Perils of Reporting Sexual Harassment

Title: Between Scylla and Charybdis: the Perils of Reporting Sexual Harassment

Links: pdf


Judicial opinions on sexual harassment portray reporting as the only reasonable course of action for the woman who finds herself the target of sexual harassment in the workplace. The hazards of reporting rarely are discussed, because the law assumes that employers are objective, nondiscriminating entities that do not tolerate harassment in the workplace and that employers’ and victims’ interests coincide. Nothing is further from the truth. Reporting does not solve the harassment problem within an organization, because reporting is a solution to an individual problem. Harassment is not an individual problem; it is an organizational problem.


Rape Shield Laws and Sexual Behavior Evidence: Effects of Consent Level and Women’s Sexual History on Rape Allegations

Title: Rape Shield Laws and Sexual Behavior Evidence: Effects of Consent Level and Women’s Sexual History on Rape Allegations

Link: http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/4499524?uid=3739952&uid=2&uid=4&uid=3739256&sid=56302292173

Summary: (abstract)

Rape shield laws, which limit the introduction of sexual history evidence in rape trials, challenge the view that women with extensive sexual histories more frequently fabricate charges of rape than other women. The present study examined the relationship between women’s actual sexual history and their reporting rape in hypothetical scenarios. Female participants (college students and a community sample, which included women working as prostitutes and topless dancers, and women living in a drug and alcohol rehabilitation center) imagined themselves in dating scenarios that described either a legally definable act of rape or consensual sexual intercourse. Additionally, within the rape scenarios, level of consensual intimate contact (i.e., foreplay) preceding rape was examined to determine its influence on rape reporting. Women were less likely to say that they would take legal action in response to the rape scenarios if they had extensive sexual histories, or if they had consented to an extensive amount of intimate contact before the rape. In response to the consensual sexual intercourse scenarios, women with more extensive sexual histories were not more likely to say that they would report rape, even when the scenario provided them with a motive for seeking revenge against their dating partner.

A Discursive Investigation into Victim Responsibility in Rape

Title: A Discursive Investigation into Victim Responsibility in Rape

Link: http://fap.sagepub.com/content/17/4/495.abstract

Summary: (abstract)

The concept of victim responsibility has assumed a central place within psychological research into perceptions of rape. Research repeatedly reports that victims may experience secondary victimization and perpetrators may receive light sentences or even be absolved of the crime. Despite new policies and practices in the UK in respect of rape crimes, attrition rates remain extremely high. This article examines victim responsibility in the talk of convicted sex o fenders and those who work with them. Twenty-three interviews were conducted with professionals and paraprofessionals who work with sex o fenders. The taped therapy sessions of a prison treatment group were the source of perpetrator talk. Discourse analysis identified the existence of two discourses; the discourse of desire and the discourse of commonsense. Separately and together, these discourses served to attribute some responsibility to the victim and to conceptualize rape as sex.