Graduation Year


Date of Thesis Acceptance

Spring 5-13-2015

Major Department or Program



Wally Herbranson


This two experiment study examined (1) how women frame their participation with beauty practices and the impact this has on both their well-being and recognition of discrimination, and (2) how exposure to a choice framework affects recognition of sexism. Based on information from an online survey, participants in study 1 considered their participation to be a choice, though I was unable to establish a connection between well-being and endorsement of a choice framework, nor between score on the recognition measure and endorsement of choice framework. Study 2 manipulated participants’ exposure to the choice framework by presenting them with different versions of an advertisement. Exposure did not predict a significant change in recognition of discrimination, though a marginally significant unhypothesized interaction was found between identification with feminism and condition. Participants low in feminism showed decreased recognition in the experimental condition, where participants high in feminism showed increased recognition. These results have implications for our understanding of choice frameworks, and discussions of gender inequality and beauty ideals.

Page Count


Subject Headings

Well-being -- Women, Choice Behavior, Physical Appearance (Body) -- Sexism, Aesthetics -- Psychological aspects, Beauty, Personal -- Psychological aspects, Discrimination -- Psychological aspects, Social sciences, Whitman College -- Dissertation collection 2015 -- Psychology Department

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Public Accessible Thesis

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Psychology Commons



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