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African American Women's Ways of Coping with Racist Events, including the Use of Binge Eating
Esty, Debora M.

2006, Doctor of Philosophy, University of Akron, Counseling Psychology.
Currently, there is a paucity of research on African American women’s ways of appraising and coping with racist events. Although some literature does exist on the topic, these studies have not utilized a model that encompasses the frequency of exposure as well as the appraisal of the event and how that might be related to differing coping responses. The present study was a response to the relative lack of literature examining African Americans’ coping responses to racism. More specifically, the purpose of this study was to examine empirically African American women’s coping styles in relation to their experiences of racist events using a comprehensive theoretical model that would expand current understanding. The current study also responds to a need in the eating disorder literature to increase counseling psychologists’ understanding of binge eating among African American women. More specifically, this study has conceptualized binge eating as a specific type of avoidance coping mechanism. No published studies have empirically examined the relation between African American women’s appraisal of racist events as distressing and their use of binge eating as a way of coping with this distress. Thus, another purpose of this study was to examine binge eating as a possible avoidance coping behavior for African American women. A total of 158 African American women were participants in this study. Limited support was found for the application of the Lazarus and Folkman model. Distress was an important primary appraisal process for both problem-solving and avoidance coping, and changeability was supported as a moderator of problem-solving coping. Inconsistent with the model was the relation between changeability and avoidance coping. This finding, though, is important in that a different pattern between appraisal and subsequent coping may need to be examined for African American women. Finally, binge eating was moderately related to lifetime racist experiences and avoidance coping. However, feelings of being able to do something about a racist event were positively related to the use of binge eating. More research is certainly needed to examine the complexity of binge eating and its use in relation to racism for African American women.
Linda Subich (Advisor)
141 p.

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Esty, D. (2006). African American Women's Ways of Coping with Racist Events, including the Use of Binge Eating. (Electronic Thesis or Dissertation). Retrieved from https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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Esty, Debora. "African American Women's Ways of Coping with Racist Events, including the Use of Binge Eating." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. University of Akron, 2006. OhioLINK Electronic Theses and Dissertations Center. 29 Jun 2015.

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Esty, Debora "African American Women's Ways of Coping with Racist Events, including the Use of Binge Eating." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. University of Akron, 2006. https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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