Stranger Danger: The Role of Perpetrator and Context in Moderating Reactions to Sexual Harassment
- First Online:
- 570 Downloads
The majority of research on sexual harassment focuses on achievement contexts where the perpetrator of the harassment is known to the victim. More recent work has begun to explore sexual harassment perpetrated by strangers in public places. The current work sought to bridge the gap between research on sexual harassment in achievement contexts and stranger harassment. In doing so, the current work manipulated factors related to three important distinctions between these topics: the relationship between the perpetrator and victim, the location, and the type of sexually harassing behavior. The current study provides evidence that stranger harassment elicits more negative reactions than harassment from a coworker. Additionally, harasser type interacted with harassment type, with situations involving strangers making physical contact eliciting the most negative reactions. Thus, the current work suggests a need for more research on stranger harassment, as well as on additional factors that may operate differently depending on harasser type.
KeywordsSexual harassment Stranger harassment Context effects Permissive norms Touch
- Cortina, L. M., & Berdahl, J. L. (2008). Sexual harassment in organizations: A decade of research in review. In C. L. Cooper & J. Barling (Eds.), Handbook of organizational behavior, vol. 1, pp. 469–497. doi:10.4135/9781849200448.n26.
- Dougherty, T. W., Turban, D. B., Olson, D. E., Dwyer, P. D., & Lapreze, M. W. (1996). Factors affecting perceptions of workplace sexual harassment. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 17, 489–501. doi:10.1002/(SICI)1099-1379(199609)17:5<489:AID-JOB780>3.0.CO;2-6.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Gardner, C. G. (1995). Passing by: Gender and public harassment. Berkley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
- Gosling, S. D., Vazire, S., Srivastava, S., & John, O. P. (2004). Should we trust web-based studies? A comparative analysis of six preconceptions about internet questionnaires. American Psychologist, 59, 93–104.Google Scholar
- Graham, K., Wells, S., Bernards, S., & Dennison, S. (2010). “Yes, I do but not with you”: Qualitative analyses of sexual/romantic overture-related aggression in bars and clubs. Contemporary Drug Problems, 37, 197–240.Google Scholar
- Gruber, J. E. (1989). How women handle sexual harassment: A literature review. Sociology and Social Research, 74, 3–9.Google Scholar
- Parks, K. A., & Zetes-Zanatta, L. M. (1999). Women’s bar-related victimization: Refining and testing a conceptual model. Aggressive Behavior, 25, 349–364. doi:10.1002/(SICI)1098-2337(1999)25:5<349:AID-AB3>3.0.CO;2-O.CrossRefGoogle Scholar