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Citation and Abstract
Social stigma: The affective consequences of attributional ambiguity.
Crocker, Jennifer; Voelkl, Kristin; Testa, Maria; Major, Brenda
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol 60(2), Feb 1991, 218-228.
Two experiments investigated the hypothesis that the stigmatized can protect their self-esteem by attributing negative feedback to prejudice. 59 women participated in the 1st experiment. Women who received negative feedback from a prejudiced evaluator attributed the feedback to his prejudice and reported less depressed affect than women who received negative feedback from a nonprejudiced evaluator. In the 2nd experiment, 38 Black and 45 White college students received interpersonal feedback from a White evaluator, who either could see them or could not. Compared with Whites, Blacks were more likely to attribute negative feedback to prejudice than positive feedback and were more likely to attribute both types of feedback to prejudice when they could be seen by the other student. Being seen by the evaluator buffered the self-esteem of Blacks from negative feedback but hurt the self-esteem of Blacks who received positive feedback. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)