Perception Differences in Ambiguous Forms of Workplace Sexual Harassment: A Comparison between the United States and Turkey


JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGY, cilt.150, sa.5, ss.625-643, 2016 (SSCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier identifier identifier

  • Yayın Türü: Makale / Tam Makale
  • Cilt numarası: 150 Konu: 5
  • Basım Tarihi: 2016
  • Doi Numarası: 10.1080/00223980.2016.1154810
  • Sayfa Sayıları: ss.625-643


Certain social-sexual behaviors that could be potentially encountered in workplaces are ambiguous in nature and perceiving them as sexual harassment can depend on the culture. With an aim to delineate the overlap and distinctions of sexual harassment perceptions of such behaviors across samples of women university students from Turkey (TR, N = 215) and the United States (US, N = 209), measurement invariance and latent mean differences in perceiving three ambiguous forms; sexist hostility, sexual hostility, and insinuation-of-interest, were examined. It was hypothesized that the US sample would perceive sexist hostility more sexually harassing as sexist workplace discriminatory practices are emphasized as a form of sexual harassment, and that the TR sample would perceive sexual hostility and insinuation-of-interest as more sexually harassing as women in TR operate in a conservative context. Despite similarities in rank ordering, US participants perceived sexist hostility more sexually harassing; insinuation-of-interest and sexual hostility less sexually harassing than Turkish participants, supporting all three hypotheses. There are implications of differing perceptions across cultures for organizations in terms of disseminating awareness via training programs about the forms of sexual harassment (SH) in a local context and for taking account of local findings in shaping the labor code of countries in relation to SH.