Examining Black Women's Intersectional Identity and Mental Health: A Moderated Mediation Model

Author: ORCID icon orcid.org/0000-0003-0922-9808
Stanton, Alexis, Psychology - Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, University of Virginia
Avery, Lanice, AS-Psychology, University of Virginia

This study uses an intersectional framework to examine the relationships among Black women’s gendered racial identity centrality (how important an intersectional, gendered racial identity is to one’s self-concept; Lewis et al., 2017), engagement in identity-related coping behaviors (i.e., shifting), endorsement of stereotypes about Black womanhood, and mental health. We hypothesized a moderated mediation model in which gendered racial identity centrality is associated with two dimensions of mental health (depressive symptoms and positive mental health) via shifting and this indirect effect is conditional upon stereotype endorsement. In a sample of 1595 Black women, we found partial support for this model. As expected, the association between gendered racial identity centrality and mental health was mediated by shifting. Although stereotype endorsement did not moderate the mediational pathway for depressive symptoms, it did moderate the mediational pathway for positive mental health; contrary to our expectations, the indirect effect of gendered racial identity on positive mental health via shifting was strongest at lower levels of stereotype endorsement. These findings highlight how Black women’s negotiation of their intersectional identity is related to different dimensions of their well-being, and thus, may provide useful contributions for culturally-relevant mental health interventions.

MA (Master of Arts)
Black women, intersectional identity, mental health, shifting, stereotypes
All rights reserved (no additional license for public reuse)
Issued Date: