Homophobic Bullying in Schools

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Updated: Oct 17, 2021
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Bullying is defined as hostile behavior due to power variation. A motivation of bullying is prejudice, which can originate from a belief about a certain religion, race, or sexual orientation. Similarly to cyberbullying, homophobic bullying has become more prominent in schools in recent years. In a 2016 study conducted by Toomey and Russell, 16.5% of homosexuals between the ages of 13 and 21 had been physically assaulted because of sexuality. Strikingly, 49% of these students had experienced cyberbullying. In a 2006 observational study by Rivers and Cowie, 82% was found to be verbal abuse. Homophobic bullying has detrimental consequences: anxiety, depression, academic consequences, and self-harm.

This study itself aims to recognize the predictors of homophobic bullying, analyze how view emergence on both violence and homosexuality affects bullying, and to observe how social interactions with gay people can affect these views. It is already known that boys are more likely to both be involved with homophobic bullying and to hold negative views. The bullying often originates because of gender appearance. Furthermore, it was hypothesized that the more homosexual people a student meets, the less they will bully. This was expected to have more influence over boys. This study is longitudinal in which students of varying race and socioeconomic backgrounds were selected in Northern Spain from both public and private schools. Students took a Homophobic Bullying Scale questionnaire of 34 sections asking about both self-reported and observed homophobic bullying towards anyone perceived as homosexual. In order to observe correlations, students were also asked how many people they know who are gay or lesbian and how often they have seen their parents making hostile comments about homosexualality.

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Most correlations were found to be small. Interaction with LGBT individuals was notably related to both homophobic language at home and homophobic bullying in school. Homophobic language at home was found to be remarkably correlated to homophobic opinions. Homophobic stances and bullying correlated with both exposure to bullying in school and the opinions of one’s parents. Boys only marginally scored higher than girls in how homophobic views and bullying are related to social interaction and homophobic language at home. Additionally, adolescents who maintained homophobic stances were more prone to bully someone due to being homosexual.

Results also showed that homophobic attitudes predicted homophobic bullying only in boys, whereas homophobic bullying predicted homophobic attitudes only in girls. Additionally, girls exhibited less aggressive behaviors, even when they held negative attitudes about LGBT individuals. It was also discussed that students at schools where homophobic bullying was a normality were more likely to imitate these aggressive behaviors. Girls’ perceptions of homosexuality are more impressionable from knowing people with either positive and negative perceptions than boys are. This means knowing someone who identifies as LGBT is more likely to change female than male perceptions. This could be due to more affable personality traits. Moreover, homophobic bullying is becoming a more prevalent problem in schools; both the views of one’s family members and socializing with LGBT people can either prevent or encourage this bullying.

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Homophobic Bullying in schools. (2021, Oct 17). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/homophobic-bullying-in-schools/