advertisement
18 March 2011

Homophobia a prejudice, not a fear

Homophobia is not an actual phobia because it's caused by disgust, not fear or anxiety, say University of Arkansas psychologists.

0

Homophobia is not an actual phobia because it's caused by disgust, not fear or anxiety, say University of Arkansas psychologists.

No need for psychological intervention
To examine the emotions behind homophobia, they asked 138 people to complete a series of surveys. Study participants also answered three questionnaires that measured levels of fear and anxiety.

Statistical analysis showed a negative correlation between attitudes about homosexuals and measures of fear and anxiety. But the survey results suggest that people who showed homophobic tendencies also displayed conservative sexual attitudes, along with elevated levels of disgust and dread of contamination.

The study was presented over the weekend at the American Psychological Society convention in New Orleans.

The findings suggest that social conditions and attitudes, not psychological factors, are the basis for homophobia, the researchers say. In other words, homophobia is more akin to racism than it is to a phobia.

That means that attempts to treat or reduce homophobia need to focus on changing attitudes in social contexts, such as homes or schools, rather than through psychological treatment, the researchers add. - HealthScout

 
NEXT ON HEALTH24X
advertisement

Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Live healthier

FYI »

When the flu turns deadly Why the flu makes you feel so miserable

Could a deadly flu strain hit SA this winter?

Following an intense flu season in the US and UK, should we be worried about our own upcoming flu season?

Alcohol and acne »

Dagga vs alcohol: Which is worse? SEE: Why you are drinking more alcohol than you realise

Does alcohol cause acne?

Some foods can be a trigger for acne, but what about alcohol? Dermatologist Dr Nerissa Moodley weighs in.