Date of Award

2010

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Towson, Shelagh (Psychology)

Keywords

Psychology, Social.

Rights

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Abstract

This study examines victim blaming for body weight and victim blaming for rape. This study aims to bring these two research strands together to examine victim blaming attitudes towards overweight rape victims. Weight stigma and victim blaming are significant problems in health care, so a sample of future health care providers were recruited to examine their attitudes towards rape victims depending on weight and sexual history. Hypothetical patient files were presented, followed by a questionnaire assessing victim blaming attitudes. Results indicated that sexual history still has a strong influence on victim blaming (more so for men than women), and that patient weight did not influence participants' attitudes towards patients. A three-way interaction was found which indicated that sexual history did not influence attitudes towards overweight patients, but that men and women had opposite reactions to normal weight patients. Limitations, future directions, and implications of this research are discussed.

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