He Said, She Said: The Attributions and Experience of Street Harassment by Selected Male and Female Metro Manila College Students

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Magtalas, A.G., & Sing, M. V. (2016). ‘He Said, She Said’: The Attributions and Experience of Street Harassment by Selected Male and Female Metro Manila College Students. Unpublished Undergraduate Thesis, University of the Philippines, Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines.

Female college students are the most common victims of street harassment. Men are perceived as the perpetrators of catcalling. This research examines how male and female college students in Metro Manila attribute catcalling in public places and their understanding of street harassment based on their previous experiences, either as perpetrators and/or witnesses or victims, respectively. Individuals attribute something to an idea or object based on their previous experiences and pre-existing beliefs. The research is purely qualitative. Eight female and eight male college students studying in schools located at Manila’s University Belt were interviewed. Findings show that men are stereotyped as dominant in society, which some use to justify in objectifying women through catcalling. Also, women get catcalled by male perpetrators, even if they clothe appropriately. Moreover, any man is capable of catcalling women at any place and at any time. Some men view catcalling as a form of entertainment, at the expense of women’s dignity and emotions. As a result, women adjust their clothing choices and daily routines to avoid catcalling instead of responding negatively. Men believe that women should negatively respond to the male catcallers. By this, men believe that women should manifest their disgust and condemnation, verbally and/or non-verbally, of the catcalls hurled at them. However, women choose to adjust instead of confronting catcallers out of fear for their safety.

Keywords: street harassment, catcalling, attribution theory, catcalling experiences, college students, Metro Manila, REBT, objectification

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