The Effect of effort and weight controllability on perceptions of obese individuals

Melissa J. Black, Nicole Sokol, Lenny R. Vartanian

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    26 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    We examined the impact of offset controllability (capability of losing weight) and offset effort (efforts to lose weight) on judgments of an obese target. Participants (n = 216) read about an obese person whose body weight was controllable/uncontrollable, and who did/did not put in effort to eat healthily and exercise. Effort played a more important role than controllability in evaluations of the target. Targets who put in effort to be healthy were ascribed fewer obesity stereotypes, evoked less disgust, and were considered to have a more acceptable lifestyle. These findings extend attribution theory and have implications for strategies to reduce weight bias.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)515-526
    Number of pages12
    JournalJournal of Social Psychology
    Volume154
    Issue number6
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Nov 2014

    Keywords

    • attribution theory
    • controllability
    • effort
    • obesity
    • stigma

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