School for Social Work
Feminism, Women-Identity, Social pressure, Interpersonal relations, Sexual harassment of women, Verbal sexual coercion, Heterosexual relationships, Pressure, Feminist identification, Gender
Verbal Sexual Coercion by men is a common experience for young women that can lead to both physical and psychological harm (Byers and Glenn, 2012; Faulkner, Kolts and Hicks, 2008; Katz and Myhr, 2008). Clinicians who treat these young women may benefit from a deeper understanding of the role that personal values and beliefs about gender plays in the experiences of this common type of sexual coercion. The present study surveyed n=217 women between the ages of 21 to 30 about their gender role ideology, feminist identification and experiences of verbal sexual coercion to determine if there is a relationship between personal values and experiences of verbal sexual coercion. The participants were separated into two groups ('feminist' and 'non-feminist') for the purposes of comparison. One unexpected finding demonstrated that verbal sexual coercion is a common occurrence within the 21 to 30 age group. Quantitative findings indicate that there is no significant difference between women who identify with the term 'feminist' and those who do not in relation to their experience of verbal sexual coercion in the past two years. Qualitative findings may indicate a difference in the specific aspects of the coercive experience viewed as 'upsetting' based on identification with the term 'feminist.' Limitations to the study and possible explanations of findings are discussed.
Hershberger, Shawna M., "Feminist identification in heterosexual encounters : exploring the relationship betweeen women's personal values and their experiences of verbal sexual coercion" (2014). Masters Thesis, Smith College, Northampton, MA.
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