Gender and Sexual Minority Identities and Health

As you can see (or will be able to see whenever YouTube finishes processing the video), I’m back in my office.  Yay!  You can also see that I haven’t quite figured out how to set up a good angle for my tablet there, though.  Boo!

Anyway, I failed at coming up with a “catchy” title for this post, but it is what it says on the tin.  This is the first batch of readings (plus one) for the course in LGBT Health Disparities I’m taking this semester.  So in the interest of continuing to build this online bibliography, here they are.  I am hoping to get into a rhythm of doing these plus also doing at least one entry with a batch of other references, so this doesn’t just become, “What Diane had to read for school.”

Baral, S., Logie, C.H., Gross, A., Wirtz, A.L., Beyrer, C. (2013). Modified social ecological model: a tool to guide the assessment of risks and risk contexts of HIV epidemics. BMC Public Health (13)482, 1-8.
Modified the social-ecological model to show risk factors across the levels of the individual, social & sexual networks, community, public policy, and the current epidemic stage.  Case studies then examine how we tend to focus on the individual level and miss opportunities to reduce risk at these other levels where possible.

Benson, L. (2014, July 08). Stress, discrimination makes LGBT community more vulnerable to health problems, suicide. Retrieved January 06, 2016, from
This does a really good job of breaking down what minority stress is and how it affects members of the LGBT population.

Eliason, M.J., and Schope, R. (2010). Shifting sands or solid foundation? Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender identity formation. In Meyer, I.H., and Northridge, M.E. (Eds.). The Health of Sexual Minorities: Public Health Perspectives on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Populations (pp. 3-26). New York, NY: Springer
This chapter explores several theories of queer identity formation and then distills down some commonalities: identity development starts with perceiving oneself as different, the process is developmental (although not always linear), people need to disclose who they are, a stage of pride or cultural immersion is key, and at some point the identity needs to be integrated or synthesized.

Eliason, M. J., & Fogel, S. C. (2015). An ecological framework for sexual minority women’s health: Factors associated with greater body mass. Journal Of Homosexuality, 62(7), 845-882. doi:10.1080/00918369.2014.1003007
Not one of our assigned readings, but one I couldn’t help referencing as another modification of the ecological model.

Meyer, I.H. (2010). Prejudice and discrimination as social stressors. In Meyer, I.H., and Northridge, M.E. (Eds.). The Health of Sexual Minorities: Public Health Perspectives on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Populations (pp. 242-267). New York, NY: Springer
This chapter takes a good look at what minority stress is and what role a person’s identity plays in how it affects them.  One question it raises is whether someone who is perceived as a minority but does not consider themselves to be one experiences the same impact from prejudice and discrimination, or if it is different, how so.  That is an intriguing question. I can’t imagine how you’d manage to construct an executable study to test it, though, as people who don’t consider themselves xyz aren’t exactly going to volunteer, and we don’t have anything like the data infrastructure to find them any other way.  Respondent-driven sampling could be attempted, but again, a WSW who doesn’t consider herself a lesbian (the example given) is unlikely to be connected to any key informants.

Sell, R.L. (2016?) Public Health and Epidemiology. To be published in Population Health, Health Systems, and Health Promotion & Wellness. Gay and Lesbian Medical Association.
Gives an overview of LGBT public health as it has grown as a discipline.  Looks at another non-pathology-specific variation on the social-ecological model.  Also takes a look at how the varying dimensions of sexuality (attraction, behavior, and identity) can impact health risks differently as well as some risks that cut across these dimensions.


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