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J Sex Res. 2009 Sep-Oct;46(5):399-413. doi: 10.1080/00224490902846479.

Race-based sexual stereotyping and sexual partnering among men who use the internet to identify other men for bareback sex.

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Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York, NY 10032, USA.


This qualitative study used sexual scripting theory to explore sexual stereotyping and sexual partnering practices among a racially diverse sample of men who use the Internet to engage in "bareback" sex with other men. The sample included 81 (73%) HIV-negative and 30 (27%) HIV-positive men who were recruited on Web sites where men seek other men to have bareback sex. Participants completed a semi-structured interview that included topics on their racial identification, their sexual experiences tied to race, and their experiences having sex with men of different racial groups. The findings suggested that a variety of race-based sexual stereotypes were used by participants. Sexual stereotyping appeared to directly and indirectly affect the sexual partnering decisions of participants. Sexual scripts may reinforce and facilitate race-based sexual stereotyping, and this behavior may structure sexual networks.

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