Year of Publication

2019

Season of Publication

Summer

Paper Type

Master's Thesis

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Psychology

NACO controlled Corporate Body

University of North Florida. Department of Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Curtis E. Phills

Second Advisor

Dr. Elizabeth R. Brown

Department Chair

Dr. Lori Lange

College Dean

Dr. George W. Rainbolt

Abstract

Although all sexual assault survivors have the potential to experience victim blame, Black women and transgender survivors of sexual assault face higher rates of victim blame and discrimination than their non-minority counterparts. This increased blame may be related to stereotypes about these individuals that do not align with “real” rape victim stereotypes. To understand how minority survivors of sexual assault are stereotyped, I investigated the intelligence and promiscuity ratings of minority survivors of sexual assault compared to their non-minority counterparts. Moreover, I investigated how implicit prejudice moderated the stereotyping of survivors. Participants read crime alerts that varied the race of the survivor (Study 1) or the gender identity of the survivor (Study 2). In Study 1, participants read crime alerts describing the sexual assault of a Black woman and a White woman. In Study 2, participants read crime alerts describing the sexual assault of a transgender man, a transgender woman, and a cisgender woman. After each alert, participants indicated the extent to which they believed the sexual assault survivor was intelligent and promiscuous. Black women survivors of sexual assault were stereotyped as less intelligent, but not more promiscuous than White women survivors. Unexpectedly, transgender survivors of sexual assault were not stereotyped differently than cisgender women survivors. Finally, implicit prejudice against Black people (Study 1) or transgender people (Study 2) did not moderate the effect survivor minority status had on stereotyping. I discuss future directions in the study of stereotyping and victim blame of minority sexual assault survivors. Materials, data, and analysis code are available online at https://osf.io/79kfh/?view_only=363a6941952d461eb918119ec76ff6d4

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