There's nothing "micro" about it : the effect of sexist humor on the expression of micro-aggressions

WCU Author/Contributor (non-WCU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Alyna Ohanmamooreni (Creator)
Western Carolina University (WCU )
Web Site:
Thomas Ford

Abstract: The present research was designed to extend the current literature on the social consequences of exposure to sexist humor. The effects of sexist humor on expressions of both explicit and implicit discrimination were examined. Micro-aggressions were measured by considering particular sub-types called micro-assaults and micro-invalidations. Micro-assaults are explicit forms of discrimination against women, and micro-invalidations are implicit forms of discrimination against women. Participants took part in a hiring simulation in which they reviewed applicant résumés. In the context of the simulation, participants in the experimental group were either presented with sexist or neutral jokes while the control group was not presented with any jokes. Insofar as participants endorsed hiring and pay recommendations to the male over the female they committed a micro-assault. Participants were also measured for expression of micro-insults in the difference in the time they spent reading the male and female résumés, as well as their memory for details of the résumés. The results of the implicit measures indicate that there was a preconscious release of prejudice against women as a result of exposure to sexist humor. The results of the study in terms of replicating previous findings on explicit micro-assaults were not fully supported, but showed a trend in expressions of micro-assaults by those high in hostile sexism in the sexist humor condition. This study extends our understanding of the effects of disparagement humor in situations where women are being evaluated in comparison to men.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2013
hiring, humor, microaggression, micro-aggression, sexist humor, women
Sexism -- Humor -- Psychological aspects
Sex discrimination against women -- Psychological aspects
Sex discrimination in employment -- Psychological aspects

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