When to Tell? : Disclosure of Concealable Group Membership, Stereotypes, and Political Evaluation

When to Tell? : Disclosure of Concealable Group Membership, Stereotypes, and Political Evaluation Although their group membership is normatively irrelevant to vote choice, members of politically underrepresented groups (e.g., women, nonwhites, and gays and lesbians) are often evaluated through the prism of their group memberships and related stereotypes when competing for elective office. Because membership in groups defined by gender, race, or ethnicity is easily perceptible, women and nonwhite candidates may have little control over the political effects of their group membership. Membership in groups defined by a candidate's sexual orientation is concealable, in contrast, and thus potentially gives gay and lesbian candidates some control over the impact of their homosexuality and accompanying stereotypes on voters' responses. Using an experimental design, I examine the relationships between timing of group membership disclosure, group stereotypes, candidate sex, and political responses to gay and lesbian candidates for office—taking into consideration voters' attitudes toward homosexuality and their sex. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Political Behavior Springer Journals

When to Tell? : Disclosure of Concealable Group Membership, Stereotypes, and Political Evaluation

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Publisher
Kluwer Academic Publishers-Plenum Publishers
Copyright
Copyright © 2003 by Plenum Publishing Corporation
Subject
Political Science and International Relations; Political Science; Sociology, general
ISSN
0190-9320
eISSN
1573-6687
D.O.I.
10.1023/B:POBE.0000004061.08643.7d
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Although their group membership is normatively irrelevant to vote choice, members of politically underrepresented groups (e.g., women, nonwhites, and gays and lesbians) are often evaluated through the prism of their group memberships and related stereotypes when competing for elective office. Because membership in groups defined by gender, race, or ethnicity is easily perceptible, women and nonwhite candidates may have little control over the political effects of their group membership. Membership in groups defined by a candidate's sexual orientation is concealable, in contrast, and thus potentially gives gay and lesbian candidates some control over the impact of their homosexuality and accompanying stereotypes on voters' responses. Using an experimental design, I examine the relationships between timing of group membership disclosure, group stereotypes, candidate sex, and political responses to gay and lesbian candidates for office—taking into consideration voters' attitudes toward homosexuality and their sex.

Journal

Political BehaviorSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 7, 2004

References

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