Published March 10, 2021
Congratulations to Assistant Professor Noelle St. Vil, Professor Laina Bay-Cheng, PhD student Hannah Ginn, and their colleague on the publication of their article, "Perceptions of monogamy, nonconsensual nonmonogamy and consensual nonmonogamy at the intersections of race and gender" in Culture, Health & Sexuality, An International Journal for Research, Intervention and Care.
St. Vil., N. M., Bay-Cheng, L. Y., Ginn, H. G., & Chen, Z. (2020). Perceptions of monogamy, nonconsensual monogamy, and consensual nonmonogamy at intersections of race and gender. Culture, Health, & Sexuality.
Given the historical entrenchment of racialised stereotypes of Black women and Black men as sexually promiscuous, we wondered whether consensual nonmonogamy (CNM) among Black partners would be seen as favourably as among white partners. We also wondered if Black participants would perceive different relationship types differently from white participants. We pursued these questions in a vignette study featuring heterosexual couples coded as Black or as white and engaged in three different relationship types: monogamy, nonconsensual nonmonogamy (NCNM) and CNM. To facilitate comparisons across race*gender intersections, we used a sample comprising equivalent numbers of Black women, white women, Black men and white men aged 18–40. Contrary to expectations, analyses did not offer evidence of a racialised sexual double standard insofar as participant perceptions of relationship quality did not differ when considering a Black couple or a white couple. Indicating the persistence of mononormativity, participants across race*gender subsamples perceived monogamous relationships to be of higher quality, regardless of the vignette couple’s race. We also found Black women, Black men and white women perceived CNM more favourably than NCNM, while there was no differentiation between CNM and NCNM among white men.