Sex Roles

, Volume 59, Issue 5–6, pp 404–417 | Cite as

What Happens When We Unpack the Invisible Knapsack? Intersectional Political Consciousness and Inter-group Appraisals

  • Ronni Michelle Greenwood
  • Aidan Christian
Original Article


How does consciousness of the intersection of white privilege with gender discrimination affect white women’s appraisals of Muslim women? White, female, non-Muslim undergraduates at a Scottish university (n = 37) were primed with either singular or intersectional group consciousness via a measure of political attitudes before they completed an ostensibly unrelated study about impression formation. As predicted, participants primed with intersectional consciousness reported more accepting attitudes toward covering practices and formed more positive impressions of the Muslim woman, but this effect was moderated by participants’ political orientation. Results support an intersectional approach to conceptualizing political consciousness and suggest that the content of political consciousness is key to understanding appraisals of and responses to difference.


Intersectionality Political consciousness Impression formation 



The authors would like to thank Eamonn Glancy for assistance with data collection. They would also like to thank two anonymous reviewers for their insightful comments on an earlier version of this manuscript.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of PsychologyDundee UniversityDundeeScotland
  2. 2.Psychology DepartmentUtah State UniversityLoganUSA

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