Sexual Harassment and Victimization from Four Other Types ofInterpersonal Aggression in Ghana: A Cycle of Victimization

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Abstract

The aim of the study was to investigate victimization from sexual harassment, and level of emotional

distress due to it, are associated with four other types of victimization. A questionnaire was completed by

280 female university students and lecturers in Ghana. The mean age was 26.7 years (SD = 6.2). The

questionnaire included scales for measuring frequency of sexual harassment, emotional distress due to

sexual harassment, physical punishment during childhood, victimization from peer aggression at school,

and victimization from intimate partner aggression. Respondents who were more than average victimized

from sexual harassment scored significantly higher on physical punishment during childhood, victimization

from peer aggression at school (revictimization), and victimization from intimate partner aggression

(multiple victimization).When frequency of sexual harassment was controlled for, emotional distress

caused by sexual harassment correlated positively with victimization from peer aggression at school, and

victimization from verbal intimate partner aggression, thus suggesting sensitization to aggression.

Victimization from sexual harassment was associated with higher levels of both previous and simultaneous

victimization from other types of aggression, thus corroborating the principles of both revictimization and

multiple victimization. The finding does not suggest that sexual harassment in all cases is associated with

other types of victimization.

Keywords: sexual harassment, revictimization, emotional distress, Ghana

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1–20
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Educational, Health and Community Psychology
Volume9
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2020
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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