Bring it On: Proactive coping with discrimination

Robyn K. Mallett, Janet K. Swim

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


We investigated proactive coping with discrimination among heavy women in both a high impact lab study (101 women) and a daily diary study (62 women). Heavy women assessed greater harm and fewer coping resources for discriminatory, as compared to non-discriminatory, hassles (Study 2). Primary appraisals of harm were important determinants of proactive coping, including primary control (attempts to change the environment) and secondary control (attempts to change the self to fit the environment) directed at discriminatory stressors (Studies 1 and 2). When heavy women used primary control coping efforts, they experienced positive interpersonal outcomes (Study 1) and less negative intrapersonal outcomes (Study 2). We discuss the benefits and limitations of engaging in proactive coping and suggest avenues for future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)411-441
Number of pages31
JournalMotivation and Emotion
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology


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