Interpersonal Consequences of Ableism: What Happens When People with Disabilities Confront Patronizing Help?


Thursday, October 21, 2021, 12:00pm


Virtual Event (Registration Required)

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People with disabilities routinely face a dilemma in dealing with patronizing help: While accepting unsolicited assistance may be harmful for its recipients, confronting the helper can lead to negative interpersonal repercussions. Across four survey experiments using hypothetical vignettes depicting interactions between a disabled person and a nondisabled pedestrian, this talk explores the consequences of confronting patronizing help for people with disabilities and how gender might interact with disability status to shape these consequences. Findings are discussed through the lens of ableism, intersectionality, and disability justice.

Please note that the event organizers prohibit any attendees, including journalists, from audio/visual recording or distributing parts or all of the event program without prior written authorization.


Dr. Katie Wang is an assistant professor in the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the Yale School of Public Health. As a social psychologist by training, Dr. Wang’s research focuses on the role of stigma as a social determinant of mental and behavioral health disparities, with a specific emphasis on people with physical disabilities and psychiatric conditions. She is a member of the Committee on Disability Issues in Psychology within the American Psychological Association and has presented research on the antecedents and consequences of ableism to a wide range of audiences, including at a public workshop hosted by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. She was recently recognized as a Rising Star by the Association for Psychological Science for her outstanding accomplishments as an early-career academic.