Lead author and doctoral student Jessica Remedios, psychologist Alison Chasteen and recent honors bachelor of science graduate Jeffrey Paek say in one study Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Taiwanese and Japanese descent were assigned one of three hypothetical situations.
Sixty participants were assigned to write about a past experience of rejection because of racism, sexism or their personalities.
The women assigned to contemplate racism were more likely than those assigned to contemplate sexism to believe that they had been rejected by others because of "something about them" or because of "who they are."
"This suggests that to these women, racism feels like a personal rejection whereas sexism feels more like the result of others' ignorance," Remedios says in a statement. "We found that Asian women take racism more personally and find it more depressing than sexism."
The findings are published in Group Processes and Intergroup Relations.