Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://www.um.edu.mt/library/oar/handle/123456789/62392
Title: 50 shades of Gay : the effects of social stigma on the mental health of persons with non-heteronormative sexual orientation
Authors: Sammut, Christian
Keywords: Sexual minorities -- Mental health -- Malta
Stigma (Social psychology) -- Malta
Homophobia -- Malta
Issue Date: 2019
Citation: Sammut, C. (2019). 50 shades of Gay: The effects of social stigma on the mental health of persons with non-heteronormative sexual orientation (Bachelor's dissertation).
Abstract: This study investigates the effects of social stigma and consequent effects on the mental health of young persons pertaining to sexual minorities. The literature review draws on the classical works of Durkheim (1895), Cooley (1902), Becker (1963), Garfinkel (1956), Goffman (1963) and Foucault (1981) to discuss the social construction of the self and its susceptibility to social stigma and labelling. These works demonstrate that the causes of social stigma are complex and have far reaching consequences on mental health. This study aims to explore how social stigma may negatively affect the mental health of those individuals who are experiencing it. The informants of this study pertained to sexual minorities in Malta. They have experienced social stigma but not necessarily mental health issues. A qualitative approach was the adopted methodology for this study. Data was collected through semi-structured, one to one interviews that lasted approximately one hour. Six respondents who identified as Lesbian, Gay or Bisexual took part in the study. Thematic analysis was adopted to analyse the data. The three main themes that were identified are; Stigma through Family and Friends; Stigma by Society and Mental Health. These themes were derived from repeated patterns in the data. The findings of the study suggest that social stigma occurred in diverse social settings in which the informants were immersed. The informants associated social stigma with feelings of anxiety, stress, and other negative effects which subsequently negatively affect self-image. Respondents who had accepting and supporting peers, found it easier to deal with certain pressures they were faced with. All six respondents reported that stigma may negatively affect the mental health of those individuals who are experiencing it. This study puts forward a number of recommendations for youth policy.
Description: B.A.(HONS)YOUTH&COMM.STUD.
URI: https://www.um.edu.mt/library/oar/handle/123456789/62392
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacSoW - 2019
Dissertations - FacSoWYCS - 2019

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