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Expectancy violation and perceptions of rape victim credibility

Hackett, Louisa, Day, Andrew and Mohr, Philip 2008, Expectancy violation and perceptions of rape victim credibility, Legal and criminological psychology, vol. 13, no. 2, pp. 323-334.

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Title Expectancy violation and perceptions of rape victim credibility
Author(s) Hackett, Louisa
Day, Andrew
Mohr, Philip
Journal name Legal and criminological psychology
Volume number 13
Issue number 2
Start page 323
End page 334
Total pages 12
Publisher British Psychological Society
Place of publication Leicester, England
Publication date 2008-09
ISSN 1355-3259
2044-8333
Summary Purpose. Rape victims have been found to have a heightened risk of secondary victimization in the legal system through biased perceptions of their credibility. In this study, participants observed a video of a rape victim reporting the crime and evaluated her credibility, to establish the influence of victim emotional expressiveness on evaluations of victim credibility. Methods. The nonverbal (eye-contact, crying) and paralinguistic (tone of voice) behaviour of the rape victim was manipulated such that the emotional presentation viewed by observers was either expressive, or not expressive. One hundred and thirty seven participants were randomly allocated to observe a videotape of either an expressive or a non-expressive victim. Participants' specific expectations about the emotional expressiveness of rape victims in general were also measured. Results. Results revealed no significant main effect of emotional expressiveness on perceptions of credibility. However, among participants with a strong expectation of emotional expressiveness, a rape victim who was emotionally expressive was perceived to be significantly more credible than a victim who was not emotionally expressive. Conclusions. It appears to be expectancy violation rather than emotional expressiveness per se that biases observers' perceptions of rape victim credibility.
Language eng
Field of Research 170106 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
HERDC collection year 2008
Copyright notice ©2008, The British Psychological Society
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30020618

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Psychology
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