Blaming Drunk Victims: Is It Just World or Sex Role Violation?

Georgina S. Hammock, Deborah R. Richardson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Richardson and Campbell (1980, 1982), in studying attributions of blame and responsibility for violent interactions, found that intoxicated victims were blamed more and held more responsible for their victimization than their sober counterparts. Two alternative explanations were proposed to account for this finding: the just world hypothesis and the effects of sex role violation. The present study was designed to test these explanations. One hundred twenty‐nine males and 93 females read scenarios that varied the sex of the victim and the level of intoxication of the victim and the aggressor. Participants rated the responsibility of the aggressor, victim, and situation for the action and evaluated the aggressor and victim. Although strong support for neither of the hypotheses was demonstrated, more support was found for the effect of sex role violation than for the just world hypothesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1574-1586
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Applied Social Psychology
Issue number19
StatePublished - Oct 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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