Research - Society

Cultural context and a critical approach to eliminating health disparities

Griffith DM1, Johnson J, Ellis KR, and Schulz AJ. (2010). Ethnic Disparity;20(1):71-6.
The authors highlight the intersection of cultural and institutional racism as a mechanism through which racial inequities in social determinants of health persist. This distinction explains processes and structures that contribute to racial disparities persisting across time and outcomes. Read abstract here.

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How costly is welfare stigma? Separating psychological costs from time costs in food assistance programs.

Flaherty, Colleen and Mumford, Kevin J. (2012).

The authors compared the psychological cost (stigma) to the cost of time (eligibility requirements) for welfare recipients, and found that the psychological costs were four times as much as the time costs. Read article here.


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Dignity and Dreams What the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) Means to Low-Income Families

Sykesa, J., Krizb, K., Edinc, K., and Halpern-Meekind, S. (2015). American Sociological Review, 80, 2: 243-267.

The authors interviewed 115 low-wage EITC recipients who said they valued the tax refund because they earned it, compared to shame and stigma from traditional welfare. Read abstract here.

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Political Polarization in the American Public: How Increasing Ideological Uniformity and Partisan Antipathy Affect Politics, Compromise and Everyday Life

Dimock, M., Kiley, J., Keeter, S., Doherty, C. Pew Research Center, June 12, 2014.

This comprehensive report is the first of a multi-part series based on a national survey of 10,013 adults nationwide, conducted January 23-March 16, 2014. The survey is aimed at understanding the nature and scope of political polarization in the American public, and how it interrelates with government, society and people’s personal lives. Read full report here.

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The economic impact of mental health stigma and discrimination: a systematic review.

Sharac J, McCrone P, Clement S, Thornicroft G. (2010.) Epidemiol Psichiatr Soc.;19(3):223-32.
The authors examined 30 articles about 27 different studies that explored the financial cost of stigma related to mental health care. They concluded that reducing stigma will have an economic benefit as well as a social one. Read abstract here.

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The psychology of prejudice

Patrick, George Thomas White, (1890.) Popular Science Monthly, 36: 633-643.

Patrick’s writing from over a century ago delves into what we know, and how we know it. He writes, “All knowledge is the result of the union of two factors, one objective and one subjective. To know anything is to refer it to something known before.” He takes this principle and applies it to bias and prejudice, in an attempt to understand the root causes of stigma. Read article here.

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Concealable Stigmatized Identities and Psychological Well-Being

Quinn, DM, and Earnshaw, VA (2013.) Social and Personality Psychology Compass; 7(1): 40–51.

The authors discuss how identities that are socially devalued or negatively stereotyped affect psychological well-being, They explore existing research and areas to explore in the future.  Read article here.

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Understanding Concealable Stigmatized Identities: The Role of Identity in Psychological, Physical, and Behavioral Outcomes

Quinn, DM, and Earnshaw, VA (2011.) Social Issues and Policy Review, 5, 1:160–190

The authors argue that stigma, discrimination, disclosure reactions and positive information, coupled with the importance of the identity determine how people with concealable stigmatized identities (e.g. mental illness, chronic disease) influence their psychological, physical, and behavioral health outcomes. Suggestions for policy implications are included.  Read article here.


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Racism and research: The case of the Tuskegee syphilis study.

Brandt, AM (1978.) The Hastings Center Report 8(6): 21-29.

This article examines the underlying racism behind the 1932-1972 infamous research study in which the US Public Health Service, in collaboration with the Tuskegee Institute, withheld treatment from 400 Black men from Alabama who had syphilis in order to study the disease. The author concludes that the study revealed much more about the pathology of racism than it did about the pathology of syphilis. Read article here.

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When do the stigmatized stigmatize? The ironic effects of being accountable to (perceived) majority group prejudice-expression norms.

Shapiro, J R and Neuberg, S L (2008.) Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 95(4), 877-898.
The authors conducted four studies involving race and ethnicity. They concluded that in order to avoid discrimination themselves, and to conform to their perception that the majority endorses discrimination, there is an increased likeliness that the minority group that is often-stigmatized will stigmatize others. Read article here. 

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A Model of (Often Mixed) Stereotype Content: Competence and Warmth Respectively Follow from Status and Competition

Fiske, S.T., A.J.C. Cuddy, P. Glick, and J. Xu. (2002.) Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 82(6): 878–902.

Stereotype Content Model hypothesizes that competence and warmth determine stereotyping, depending on the balance (high or low) of each. The researchers explored  gender, ethnicity, race, class, age, and disability as they pertained to various combinations of competence and warmth. Read article here. 

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How stigma interferes with mental health care.

Corrigan, P. (2004.) American Psychologist; 59(7):614-625.

This article delves deeply into the stigma impacting people who have a mental illness, and those who might have one, but fear the label and subsequent harm that might befall them if they pursue treatment. Read article here. 

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Stigma as Ego Depletion: How Being the Target of Prejudice Affects Self-Control.

 Inzlict, M., McKay, L., Aronson, J. Psychological Science, 17(3) 262-269, 2006.

This research suggests that coping with stigma impairs one’s ability to manage and regulate one’s behaviors. Read abstract here.


The effects of news stories on the stigma of mental illness.

Corrigan PW, Powell K, Michaels PJ. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 201(3):179-82. 2013.

Researchers evaluated how a positive, neutral or negative journalism article about mental illness impacted readers’ perceptions of stigma.  Read abstract here.

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Neighborhood stigma and the perception of disorder.

Sampson, R. J., & Raudenbush, S. W. (2005). Focus, 24(1), 7-11.

Stereotype may lead to actions by members of stigmatized groups that seem to confirm the statistical association between race and social disorder. Race in American society is a statistical marker that stigmatizes not only individuals but the places in which they are concentrated. Read article here.


A social psychological perspective on the stigmatization of older adults.

Richeson, J. A., & Shelton, J. N. (2006). When I’m 64, 174-208.

Research from both perspectives reveals that ageist beliefs negatively influence the life outcomes of older adults, directly as well as through expectancy effects and self-stereotyping. In addition, the reviewed literature reveals important complexities and nuances of age stigma. Read article here.

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Stigma by association: Psychological factors in relatives of people with mental illness.

Östman, M., & Kjellin, L. (2002). The British Journal of Psychiatry, 181(6), 494-498.

Stigma affects not only people with mental illnesses, but their families as well. Understanding how stigma affects family members in terms of both their psychological response to the ill person and their contacts with psychiatric services will improve interactions with the family. Read article here.


Women in Transition: A Qualitative Analysis of Definitions of Poverty and Success.

Marsh-McDonald, C. M., & Schroeder, S. (2012). The Qualitative Report, 17(91), 1-22.

Impoverished women share insights related to the stigma of poverty and their diverse experiences in transitioning away from poverty. Read article here.

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Is stigma a stigmatizing word? A political question for science.

Corrigan, P.W. and Ben-Zeev, D., Stigma Research and Action, 2(2)62-66. 2012. Leading stigma researchers weigh in on this controversial topic. Read article here.


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