The HIV/AIDS-epidemic continues to have a severe and disproportionate impact in Black communities, with Black men who have sex with women (MSW) playing a major role in the heterosexual transmission of HIV. Although gender role norms and sexual scripts appear to be associated with sexual risk behaviors, research on these factors and sexual risk among Black MSW is virtually nonexistent. Moreover, little is understood about how social structural factors such as poverty, racial discrimination, and incarceration shape the gender role norms and sexual scripts of African American MSW and in turn, heterosexual sexual risk. We propose a 3-year study in which we will use cross-sectional multi-site venue-based probability sampling to recruit African American MSW, including those who may also have sex with men, between the ages of 18 and 44 in Philadelphia, PA. The study has two phases: measurement development (Phase I) and model testing (Phase II). in Phase I, in-depth interviews and focus groups will be used to identify and describe gender role norms and sexual scripts for African American MSW. Based on these findings, we will develop quantitivative gender role norms, sexual scripts, and religiosity measures to examine how these concepts are associated with sexual risk among African American MSW (Specific Aim 1). We will also develop and pretest an ACASI survey in Phase I. Another aim of the study is to consider how sociocultural factors such as racial discrimination, poverty, and incarceration are linked to African American MSW's gender role norms and sexual scripts, and in turn sexual risk (Specific Aim 2). In Phase II, hypotheses based on the study's conceptual model will be tested using structural equation model with a sample of 500 African American MSW (Specific Aim 3). The model addresses the effects of gender and sexual norms, social structural risk factors, resiliency factors, psychological risk factors, and cognitive condom use factors on African American MSW's sexual risk behaviors. The research will make important theoretical and empirical contributions to understanding how gender role norms and sexual scripts influence heterosexual risk behaviors for African American MSW. This knowledge will inform interventions targeted to African American MSW to promote awareness about how gender role norms and sexual scripts relate to HIV risk, and facilitate the integration of behaviors that protect against HIV risk into African American MSW's gender role norms and sexual scripts. ? ? ? ?

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Research Project (R01)
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Behavioral and Social Science Approaches to Preventing HIV/AIDS Study Section (BSPH)
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Newcomer, Susan
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Drexel University
Public Health & Prev Medicine
Schools of Public Health
United States
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Bowleg, Lisa; English, Devin; Del Rio-Gonzalez, Ana Maria et al. (2016) Measuring the Pros and Cons of What It Means to Be a Black Man: Development and Validation of the Black Men's Experiences Scale (BMES). Psychol Men Masc 17:177-188
Bowleg, Lisa; Burkholder, Gary J; Noar, Seth M et al. (2015) Sexual scripts and sexual risk behaviors among Black heterosexual men: development of the Sexual Scripts Scale. Arch Sex Behav 44:639-54
Bowleg, Lisa; Heckert, Andrea L; Brown, Tia L et al. (2015) Responsible men, blameworthy women: Black heterosexual men's discursive constructions of safer sex and masculinity. Health Psychol 34:314-27
Bowleg, Lisa; Neilands, Torsten B; Tabb, Loni Philip et al. (2014) Neighborhood context and Black heterosexual men's sexual HIV risk behaviors. AIDS Behav 18:2207-18
Bowleg, Lisa; Fitz, Caroline C; Burkholder, Gary J et al. (2014) Racial discrimination and posttraumatic stress symptoms as pathways to sexual HIV risk behaviors among urban Black heterosexual men. AIDS Care 26:1050-7
Bowleg, Lisa; Teti, Michelle; Malebranche, David J et al. (2013) ""It's an Uphill Battle Everyday"": Intersectionality, Low-Income Black Heterosexual Men, and Implications for HIV Prevention Research and Interventions. Psychol Men Masc 14:25-34
Bowleg, Lisa; Mingo, Meaghan; Massie, Jenne S (2013) ""The skill is using your big head over your little head"": what black heterosexual men say they know, want, and need to prevent HIV. Am J Mens Health 7:31S-42S
Bowleg, Lisa; Burkholder, Gary J; Massie, Jenne S et al. (2013) Racial discrimination, social support, and sexual HIV risk among Black heterosexual men. AIDS Behav 17:407-18
Teti, Michelle; Martin, Ashley E; Ranade, Richa et al. (2012) ""I'm a keep rising. I'm a keep going forward, regardless"": exploring Black men's resilience amid sociostructural challenges and stressors. Qual Health Res 22:524-33
Raj, Anita; Bowleg, Lisa (2012) Heterosexual risk for HIV among black men in the United States: a call to action against a neglected crisis in black communities. Am J Mens Health 6:178-81

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