Ethnic Harassment, Ethnic Identity Centrality, and Well-Being
- 4 Downloads
In this study, we examined the direct effect of (positive vs. negative) evaluation of potentially harassing experiences due to ethnic background on impaired well-being as well as the moderating effect of ethnic identity centrality on the relationship between (lower vs. higher) frequency of potentially harassing experiences and impaired well-being. Using a gender-balanced sample with equal proportions of black and minority ethnic and white undergraduate students (N = 240), we found that, expectedly, ethnic identity centrality intensified the effects of higher frequency of potentially harassing experiences on lower self-esteem and lower positive affect. Unexpectedly, however, gender identity centrality buffered the effects of higher frequency as well as more negative evaluation of potentially harassing experiences on lower self-esteem, indicating that gender identity centrality may be a protective resource, even though it is not specific to ethnic harassment. Exploratory analyses revealed that for black and minority ethnic respondents with high ethnic identity centrality and for white respondents with low ethnic identity centrality, there were associations between more negative evaluation of potentially harassing experiences and lower self-esteem and lower positive affect. This finding might indicate that ethnic identity centrality was a risk factor in black and ethnic minority respondents, but a protective factor in white respondents.
KeywordsEthnic harassment Identity centrality Well-being Discrimination
The authors would like to thank Mayra Ruiz-Castro for her thoughtful comments on an earlier version of this manuscript.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Research Involving Human Participants
All procedures in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
All respondents filled in the questionnaire online. E-mails inviting to participate were sent through student support services. The e-mails contained an explanation of the aim of the study, along with the assurance that participation would be voluntary, that respondents could withdraw from participating at any time, that their responses would be treated confidentially, and that data would be analysed at aggregate level. Potential respondents willing to participate accessed an online questionnaire through a link at the end of the invitation e-mail.
- 2.Perry SP, Hardeman R, Burke AE, Cunningham B, Burgess DJ, van Ryn M. The impact of everyday discrimination and racial identity centrality on African American medical student well-being: a report from the medical student CHANGE study. J Racial Ethn Health Disparities. 2016;3(3):519–26. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40615-015-0170-3.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 11.Lazarus RS, Folkman S. Stress, appraisal, and coping. New York: Springer Publishing Company; 1984.Google Scholar
- 13.Fitzgerald LF, Swan S, Magley VJ. But was it really sexual harassment? Legal, behavioral, and psychological definitions of the workplace victimization of women. In: O’Donohue W, editor. Sexual harassment: theory, research, and treatment. Needham Heights, MA: Allyn & Bacon; 1997. p. 5–28.Google Scholar
- 14.Turner JC, Oaks PJ. The significance of the social identity concept for social psychology with reference to individualism, interactionism and social influence. Br J Soc Psychol. 1986;25(3):237–52. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.2044-8309.1986.tb00732.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 17.Szymanski, D. M., & Lewis, J. A. (2015). Gendered racism, coping, identity centrality, and African American college women’s psychological distress. Psychology of Women Quarterly. Advance online publication.Google Scholar
- 20.Sellers, R. M., Copeland-Linder, N., Martin, P. P., & L’Heureux Lewis, R. (2006). Racial identity matters: The relationship between racial discrimination and Psychological functioning in African American adolescents. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 16, 187–216.Google Scholar
- 23.Higher Education Statistics Agency. HESA Student Record 2011/12 – reference 35929 [unpublished data set]. Cheltenham, U.K.: HESA Information Services; 2013.Google Scholar
- 24.Higher Education Funding Council for England (2015). Equality and diversity data tables: Staff and student profiles. Retrieved from http://www.hefce.ac.uk/data/year2015/eddata.
- 36.Pearson CM, Porath CL. On the nature, consequences and remedies of workplace incivility: no time for “nice”? Think again. Acad Manag Exec. 2005;19:7–18.Google Scholar