Contact with Counter-Stereotypical Women Predicts Less Sexism, Less Rape Myth Acceptance, Less Intention to Rape (in Men) and Less Projected Enjoyment of Rape (in Women)

Taschler, Miriam and West, Keon. 2016. Contact with Counter-Stereotypical Women Predicts Less Sexism, Less Rape Myth Acceptance, Less Intention to Rape (in Men) and Less Projected Enjoyment of Rape (in Women). Sex Roles, ISSN 0360-0025 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

Intergroup contact—(positive) interactions with people from different social groups—is a widely researched and strongly supported prejudice-reducing mechanism shown to reduce prejudice against a wide variety of outgroups. However, no known previous research has investigated whether intergroup contact can also reduce sexism against women. Sexism has an array of negative outcomes. One of the most detrimental and violent ones is rape, which is both justified and downplayed by rape myth acceptance. We hypothesised that more frequent, higher quality contact with counter-stereotypical women would predict lower levels of sexism and thus less rape myth acceptance (in men) and less sexualised projected responses to rape (in women). Two studies using online surveys with community samples supported these hypotheses. In Study 1, 170 male participants who experienced more positive contact with counter-stereotypical women reported less intention to rape. Similarly, in Study 2, 280 female participants who experienced more positive contact with counter-stereotypical women reported less projected sexual arousal at the thought of being raped. Thus, the present research is the first known to show that contact could be a potential tool to combat sexism, rape myth acceptance, intentions to rape in men, and sexualisation of rape by women.

Item Type:

Article

Identification Number (DOI):

https://doi.org/10.1007/s11199-016-0679-x

Keywords:

Contact hypothesis, Sexism, Sexual violence, Violence against women, Rape, Rape myth acceptance

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Psychology

Dates:

DateEvent
30 September 2016Published Online
5 September 2016Accepted

Item ID:

19951

Date Deposited:

28 Feb 2017 13:03

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 16:24

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI:

http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/19951

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