Are men sexually harassed? If so, by whom?

Law Hum Behav. 1998 Feb;22(1):59-79. doi: 10.1023/a:1025776705629.


Research on sexual harassment has recently expanded to include examination of men's experiences. Such research, however, has ignored the power dynamics involved in sexual harassment and typically assumed exclusively heterosexual situations. We examine legal cases illustrating the many forms that male-male harassment may take and the complex array of situations in which such harassment occurs. We then report the frequencies of experiences of harassment in three large samples of working men as well as the sex of the perpetrators of the harassment. Finally, we examine men's evaluations of these situations to determine the degree to which they found them to be harassing in a psychological sense. Our results indicate that men experience potentially sexually harassing behaviors from other men at least as often as they do from women; however, men in all samples reported relatively few negative reactions to these experiences. Future research should examine the predictors and outcomes of such situations to clarify the meaning of such behavior for male targets.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Female
  • Homosexuality, Male
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Men*
  • Sex Factors
  • Sexual Harassment* / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Sexual Harassment* / psychology
  • United States