The structural aspects say that the forces beyond their control such as sexism, racism, absence of a father figure, lack of a job and lack of proper child support lead to their economic problems. The individualistic views include laziness and carelessness. The third hypothesis points out that the welfare recipients will realize that they have experienced the same stigma as other women recipients (Seccombe, James, & Walters, 1998, p.854).
The number of participants was 47 women recipients of the AFDC benefits. The demographic included variation in age, race, housing, community size, level of education, employment status and telephone ownership. It included African Americans and White American, ranging in age from 19 to 48 years. Most of them were in marriage. Only nine of them had less than a secondary school education. Some were on employment while others were not. The majority of the interviewed lived in subsidized houses. The researcher also interviewed friends, acquaintances, neighbors, and relatives of the initial women. The authors and two graduate students carried out the interview (Seccombe, James, & Walters, 1998, p.854).
The researchers used two methods: phenomenology and grounded theory. The methods originate from symbolic interactionism and assume that people actively come up with their realities from the symbols surrounding them through social interaction. They applied phenomenology to give an accurate description and interpretation of the participants practices and meanings via detailed narratives. The researchers used grounded theory to group their perspectives on the reason welfare recipients are women. The authors gathered the data by engaging the participants in in-depth semi-structured interviews (Seccombe, James, & Walters, 1998, p.855).
The research found out that the respondents were aware of their stigmatized