Laura S. Richman
  • Laura S. Richman

  • Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience
  • Psychology and Neuroscience
  • Phone: (919) 660-5754
  • Fax: 919-660-5726
  • Homepage
  • Secondary web page
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Overview

    Research interests include the influence of psychosocial factors on health outcomes and health behaviors, with particular attention to identity, emotion, and perceived discrimination. Particular interest in how the psychological and physical consequences of perceived discrimination may be moderated by how strongly one identifies with the group that is the target of discrimination. Other interests include the biological mechanisms by which emotion and emotion regulation influence health.

    Click here for .pdf links to my publications
  • Specialties

    • Social Psychology
  • Areas of Interest

    emotion and health
  • Education

      • Ph.D.,
      • University of Virginia,
      • 1997
      • M.A.,
      • Social Psychology,
      • University of Virginia,
      • 1994
      • B.S.,
      • University of Maryland, College Park,
      • 1992
      • Ph.D., Psychology,
      • University of Virginia
  • Awards, Honors and Distinctions

      • Examining the effect of health provider race on reductions in home environmental asthma triggers and adherence to asthma medical regimens,
      • National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences,
      • 2005-2006
      • ADVANCE grant National Science Foundation. Co-Investigator,
      • December, 2007– 2008
      • Social Science Research Institute Faculty Fellows,
      • Duke University,
      • 2007-2008
  • Selected Publications

      • L Smart Richman and MR Leary.
      • 2009.
      • Reactions to discrimination, stigmatization, ostracism, and other forms of interpersonal rejection: a multimotive model..
      • Psychol Rev
      • 116:
      • 365-383
      • .
      Publication Description

      This article describes a new model that provides a framework for understanding people's reactions to threats to social acceptance and belonging as they occur in the context of diverse phenomena such as rejection, discrimination, ostracism, betrayal, and stigmatization. People's immediate reactions are quite similar across different forms of rejection in terms of negative affect and lowered self-esteem. However, following these immediate responses, people's reactions are influenced by construals of the rejection experience that predict 3 distinct motives for prosocial, antisocial, and socially avoidant behavioral responses. The authors describe the relational, contextual, and dispositional factors that affect which motives determine people's reactions to a rejection experience and the ways in which these 3 motives may work at cross-purposes. The multimotive model accounts for the myriad ways in which responses to rejection unfold over time and offers a basis for the next generation of research on interpersonal rejection.

      • EA Pascoe and LS Richman.
      • 2009.
      • Perceived Discrimination and Health: A Meta-Analytic Review.
      • Psychological Bulletin
      • 135:
      • 531-554
      • .
      Publication Description

      Perceived discrimination has been studied with regard to its impact on several types of health effects. This meta-analysis provides a comprehensive account of the relationships between multiple forms of perceived discrimination and both mental and physical health outcomes. In addition, this meta-analysis examines potential mechanisms by which perceiving discrimination may affect health, including through psychological and physiological stress responses and health behaviors. Analysis of 134 samples suggests that when weighting each study's contribution by sample size, perceived discrimination has a significant negative effect on both mental and physical health. Perceived discrimination also produces significantly heightened stress responses and is related to participation in unhealthy and nonparticipation in healthy behaviors. These findings suggest potential pathways linking perceived discrimination to negative health outcomes. © 2009 American Psychological Association.

      • LS Richman, GG Bennett, J Pek, I Siegler and RB Williams.
      • 2007.
      • Discrimination, dispositions, and cardiovascular responses to stress..
      • Health Psychol
      • 26:
      • 675-683
      • .
      Publication Description

      OBJECTIVE: Recent research suggests that past exposure to discrimination may influence perceptions of, and physiological responses to, new challenges. The authors examined how race and trait levels of hostility and optimism interact with past exposure to discrimination to predict physiological reactivity and recovery during an anger recall task. DESIGN: A community sample of 165 normotensive Black and White adults participated in an anger recall task while having their cardiovascular function monitored. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Blood pressure and heart rate indicators of physiological reactivity and recovery. RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: Participants had higher reactivity and slower recovery to the anger recall task when they had high past discrimination, low cynicism, or high optimism. The pattern of effects was similar for both racial groups, but Blacks had more acute reactivity and slower recovery than Whites. These results are consistent with the perspective of discrimination as a chronic stressor that is related to acute stress responses, particularly for Blacks.

      • LS Richman, L Kubzansky, J Maselko, I Kawachi, P Choo and M Bauer.
      • 2005.
      • Positive emotion and health: going beyond the negative..
      • Health Psychol
      • 24:
      • 422-429
      • .
      Publication Description

      This study examined the relationships between positive emotions and health. Two positive emotions were considered, hope and curiosity, in conjunction with 3 physician-diagnosed disease outcomes: hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and respiratory tract infections. Medical data were abstracted over a 2-year period from 1,041 patient records from a multispecialty medical practice, and emotions were assessed through a mailed questionnaire. Across 3 disease outcomes, higher levels of hope were associated with a decreased likelihood of having or developing a disease. Higher levels of curiosity were also associated with decreased likelihood of hypertension and diabetes mellitus. Results suggest that positive emotion may play a protective role in the development of disease.

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  • PhD Students

    • Micah R. Lattanner
    • Julie L. Martin
  • Teaching

    • PSY 627S.01
      • Soc/Psych 319
      • W 01:25 PM-03:55 PM