Strategic Resistance to Sexual Harassment | Teachers College Columbia University

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Strategic Resistance to Sexual Harassment: Suggested tactics from TC’s Peter Coleman

Peter Coleman, Professor of Psychology and Education
Peter Coleman, Professor of Psychology and Education
In his blog for Psychology Today, TC Professor of Psychology & Education Peter Coleman writes that the major onus of acts of sexual harassment "falls squarely on those of us who contribute in ways big and small to a hostile, sexist, misogynistic culture." But he adds that these acts "can also be resisted directly by those targeted, in a manner that is both effective and has the fewest negative consequences for the abused." Acknowledging the risks that often accompany fighting back, he offers an approach he calls "strategic rebellion," consisting of equal parts persuasion tactics (appealing to the harasser's self-interest and morals), resistance tactics (saying no, saying it louder, broadcasting it convincingly) and power tactics (taking care of oneself physically and emotionally, gathering friends and documents, practicing jujitsu).

Published Friday, Oct 13, 2017