ERIC Number: ED148946
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977-Mar-30
Reference Count: N/A
Reference Groups for Female Attractiveness Among Black and White College Females.
Harrison, Algea O.; Stoner, David M.
This study is concerned with the comparative reference group used by black and white women when evaluating female attractiveness. The study's examination of this issue is part of a larger report on the relationship between self-concept, attractiveness and reference group for black and white women. The study used the technique proposed by McGuire and Padawer-Singer to measure self-concept by analyzing the spontaneous response of the subject to the question "Tell us about yourself?". This technique is also used to elicit information about attractiveness from black and white women. Specific issues examined were: (1) whether black and white females use different attributes in describing attractiveness, (2) whether there is a difference in the physical features used to describe a physically attractive female, and (3) whether the responses varied as a function of the racial make-up of the social milieu and/or the race of the experimenter. The subjects were 40 black and 40 white female students on a college campus with 17% black enrollment. Results suggest that black women are probably using other black women as a reference group when evaluating female attractiveness. The presence of whites as either subjects in the group or as the experimenter resulted in an increase in the number of physical characteristics mentioned by blacks in describing an attractive female. The presence of blacks resulted in a decrease of the use of physical characteristics on the part of white females. The findings point to the effect of the social milieu in which such data are collected. Whether black females viewed their physical features as attractive was a concern of the study. In describing a physically attractive female, very seldom did either group use racially exclusive terms. (Author/AM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Not Available Separately; See UD 017 651