Date of Award
Dr. Bridget Diamond- Welch
Dr. Cindy Struckman-Johnson
Dr. Craig Tollini
Criminology, Sexual Assault, Gender and Sexuality, Bisexuality
This study examined the ways in which members of the heterosexual and queer communities assign blame in cases of sexual assault. Heterosexual, bisexual, and homosexual participants were recruited from Amazon mTurk. After reading a vignette depicting a sexual assault, participants completed a survey measuring variables like victim blame, empathy for and similarity to the victim and perpetrator, and rape myth acceptance (RMA). There appears to be a gender/sexuality interaction at play wherein males of all sexualities are significantly less victim-friendly than females of all sexualities and wherein there are significant differences between males of different sexualities. Significant differences were found between the heterosexual, bisexual, and homosexual samples, which were largely driven by the gay male results. Bisexuality promoted slightly more victim-friendly attitudes in four areas of analysis: victim blame tendencies relative to heterosexuals and homosexuals; victim blame tendencies relative to homosexuals; perceived similarity to the victim on the part of bisexual males relative to heterosexual males; and victim-friendliness of bisexual males relative to gay males.
Mann, Olivia, "(Bi)Sexuality and Victim Blame: How Observer Sexuality Affects Attributions Of Blame in a Case of Acquaintance Sexual Assault with a Heterosexual Female Victim" (2018). Honors Thesis. 22.