Remedying Stereotype Threat Effects in Spectator Sports

in Journal of Sport Management
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  • 1 University of Florida
  • 2 University of Minnesota
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Attempts were made to explore the value of the multiple social identities approach in reducing the detrimental effects of stereotype threats in the context of spectator sports. A total of 150 females were recruited for a laboratory experiment. The following manipulations were implemented: (a) stereotype threat, (b) threat along with the implicit team identification activation, and (c) control. The results revealed that females in the threat condition showed a reduced level of psychological well-being; paradoxically, negative stereotypes positively influenced their self-esteem. The activation of implicit team identification alleviated the detrimental consequences of threat by inhibiting the spreading activation of harmful stereotypes regarding women in sports. The main theoretical frameworks of this study consisted of the process account of stereotype threat suggested in cognitive psychology. The authors attempted to offer a stronger understanding of the underlying mental processes of stereotype threat on women as well as an effective means to deal with its detrimental consequences.

Chang is with the Department of Sport Management, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA. Schull and Kihl are with School of Kinesiology, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, USA.

Chang (yhchang@hhp.ufl.edu) is corresponding author.
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