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Concept: Sexism

253

Common stereotypes associate high-level intellectual ability (brilliance, genius, etc.) with men more than women. These stereotypes discourage women’s pursuit of many prestigious careers; that is, women are underrepresented in fields whose members cherish brilliance (such as physics and philosophy). Here we show that these stereotypes are endorsed by, and influence the interests of, children as young as 6. Specifically, 6-year-old girls are less likely than boys to believe that members of their gender are “really, really smart.” Also at age 6, girls begin to avoid activities said to be for children who are “really, really smart.” These findings suggest that gendered notions of brilliance are acquired early and have an immediate effect on children’s interests.

Concepts: Male, Female, Gender, Gender role, Woman, Transgender, Man, Sexism

171

The aim of this research was to examine conditions that modify feminists' support for women as targets of gender discrimination. In an experimental study we tested a hypothesis that threatened feminist identity will lead to greater differentiation between feminists and conservative women as victims of discrimination and, in turn, a decrease in support for non-feminist victims. The study was conducted among 96 young Polish female professionals and graduate students from Gender Studies programs in Warsaw who self-identified as feminists (M age  = 22.23). Participants were presented with a case of workplace gender discrimination. Threat to feminist identity and worldview of the discrimination victim (feminist vs. conservative) were varied between research conditions. Results indicate that identity threat caused feminists to show conditional reactions to discrimination. Under identity threat, feminists perceived the situation as less discriminatory when the target held conservative views on gender relations than when the target was presented as feminist. This effect was not observed under conditions of no threat. Moreover, feminists showed an increase in compassion for the victim when she was portrayed as a feminist compared to when she was portrayed as conservative. Implications for the feminist movement are discussed.

Concepts: Gender, Discrimination, Victim, Sexism, Femininity, Feminism, Women's rights, Feminist theory

154

Little is known about the climate of the scientific fieldwork setting as it relates to gendered experiences, sexual harassment, and sexual assault. We conducted an internet-based survey of field scientists (N = 666) to characterize these experiences. Codes of conduct and sexual harassment policies were not regularly encountered by respondents, while harassment and assault were commonly experienced by respondents during trainee career stages. Women trainees were the primary targets; their perpetrators were predominantly senior to them professionally within the research team. Male trainees were more often targeted by their peers at the research site. Few respondents were aware of mechanisms to report incidents; most who did report were unsatisfied with the outcome. These findings suggest that policies emphasizing safety, inclusivity, and collegiality have the potential to improve field experiences of a diversity of researchers, especially during early career stages. These include better awareness of mechanisms for direct and oblique reporting of harassment and assault and, the implementation of productive response mechanisms when such behaviors are reported. Principal investigators are particularly well positioned to influence workplace culture at their field sites.

Concepts: Report, Research, Profession, Training, Experience, Knowledge, Gender studies, Sexism

108

Peer review is the cornerstone of scholarly publishing and it is essential that peer reviewers are appointed on the basis of their expertise alone. However, it is difficult to check for any bias in the peer-review process because the identity of peer reviewers generally remains confidential. Here, using public information about the identities of 9000 editors and 43000 reviewers from the Frontiers series of journals, we show that women are underrepresented in the peer-review process, that editors of both genders operate with substantial same-gender preference (homophily), and that the mechanisms of this homophily are gender-dependent. We also show that homophily will persist even if numerical parity between genders is reached, highlighting the need for increased efforts to combat subtler forms of gender bias in scholarly publishing.

Concepts: Scientific method, Gender, Academic publishing, Academia, Peer review, Review, Sexism, Feminism

48

Previous studies of men’s breast size preferences have yielded equivocal findings, with studies variously indicating a preference for small, medium, or large breasts. Here, we examined the impact of men’s oppressive beliefs in shaping their female breast size ideals. British White men from the community in London, England (N = 361) viewed figures of women that rotated in 360° and varied in breast size along five levels. They then rated the figure that they found most physically attractive and also completed measures assessing their sexist attitudes and tendency to objectify women. Results showed that medium breasts were rated most frequent as attractive (32.7 %), followed by large (24.4 %) and very large (19.1 %) breasts. Further analyses showed that men’s preferences for larger female breasts were significantly associated with a greater tendency to be benevolently sexist, to objectify women, and to be hostile towards women. These results were discussed in relation to feminist theories, which postulate that beauty ideals and practices in contemporary societies serve to maintain the domination of one sex over the other.

Concepts: Estrogen, Gender, Sociology, Breast, Sexism, Feminism, Intersectionality, Feminist theory

45

Discrimination of and memory for others' generous and selfish behaviors could be adaptive abilities in social animals. Dogs have seemingly expressed such skills in both direct and indirect interactions with humans. However, recent studies suggest that their capacity may rely on cues other than people’s individual characteristics, such as the place where the person stands. Thus, the conditions under which dogs recognize individual humans when solving cooperative tasks still remains unclear. With the aim of contributing to this problem, we made dogs interact with two human experimenters, one generous (pointed towards the food, gave ostensive cues, and allowed the dog to eat it) and the other selfish (pointed towards the food, but ate it before the dog could have it). Then subjects could choose between them (studies 1-3). In study 1, dogs took several training trials to learn the discrimination between the generous and the selfish experimenters when both were of the same gender. In study 2, the discrimination was learned faster when the experimenters were of different gender as evidenced both by dogs' latencies to approach the bowl in training trials as well as by their choices in preference tests. Nevertheless, dogs did not get confused by gender when the experimenters were changed in between the training and the choice phase in study 3. We conclude that dogs spontaneously used human gender as a cue to discriminate between more and less cooperative experimenters. They also relied on some other personal feature which let them avoid being confused by gender when demonstrators were changed. We discuss these results in terms of dogs' ability to recognize individuals and the potential advantage of this skill for their lives in human environments.

Concepts: Psychology, Skill, Learning, Morality, Choice, Discrimination, Apex predator, Sexism

29

In the present work, we examined associations between oppressive, sexist beliefs and consideration of cosmetic surgery for oneself and also endorsement of cosmetic surgery for one’s romantic partner. A total of 554 German-speaking volunteers from the community, mainly in Austria, completed measures of consideration of cosmetic surgery and three measures of sexist attitudes, while a subset of participants in romantic relationships completed a measure of endorsement of cosmetic surgery for their partners along with the measures of sexism. Preliminary analyses showed that women and single respondents were more likely to consider having cosmetic surgery than men and committed respondents, respectively. Further analyses showed that consideration of cosmetic surgery for oneself was significantly associated with sexist attitudes, particularly hostile attitudes to women. In addition, among participants in a relationship, sexist attitudes were associated with endorsement of cosmetic surgery for one’s partner. These results indicate that attitudes to cosmetic surgery for oneself and one’s partner are shaped by gender-ideological belief systems in patriarchal societies. Possible implications for understanding the motivations for having cosmetic surgery, among both single respondents and couples, are discussed.

Concepts: Belief, Gender, Sociology, Sexism, Feminism, Misogyny, Patriarchy, Intersectionality

19

Ethnic and gender discrimination in a variety of markets has been documented in several populations. We conducted an online field experiment to examine ethnic and gender discrimination in the private rental housing market in Finland. We sent 1459 inquiries regarding 800 apartments. We compared responses to standardized apartment inquiries including fictive Arabic-sounding, Finnish-sounding or Swedish-sounding female or male names. We found evidence of discrimination against Arabic-sounding names and male names. Inquiries including Arabic-sounding male names had the lowest probability of receiving a response, receiving a response to about 16% of the inquiries made, while Finnish-sounding female names received a response to 42% of the inquires. We did not find any evidence of the landlord’s gender being associated with the discrimination pattern. The findings suggest that both ethnic and gender discrimination occur in the private rental housing market in Finland.

Concepts: Male, Gender, Sexism, Real estate, Apartment, Renting, Landlord, Rental agreement

16

Three experiments examined the effect of sexist humor on men’s self-reported rape proclivity (RP). Pilot study demonstrated that people differentiate the five rape scenarios of Bohner et al.’s. RP Scale based on the degree of physical violence perpetrated against the victim. Experiment 1 demonstrated that men higher in hostile sexism report greater RP upon exposure to sexist jokes when a woman (vs. a man) delivers them, and that this effect is limited to rape scenarios depicting a moderate versus a high level of physical violence. Experiment 2 further demonstrated that the relationship between hostile sexism and rape proclivity in response to a moderately violent rape scenario after exposure to sexist humor generalizes beyond women in the immediate humor context to women as a whole.

Concepts: Sexual intercourse, Gender, Gender role, Violence, Human sexual behavior, Woman, Rape, Sexism

16

Abstract Fifty years after Title IX, women remain sparsely represented in high ranks and leadership in academic medicine. Although men and women enter the career pipeline at similar rates, academic medicine does not equivalently advance them. Currently, women account for 32% of associate professors, 20% of full professors, 14% of department chairs, and 11% of deans at U.S. medical schools-far from the near sex parity seen in medical students since the 1990s. Over 30 years of research confirms that gender stereotypes can operate to disadvantage women in review processes and consequently bar their advancement in domains like science and medicine. The authors present three vignettes to illustrate how gender stereotypes can also operate to disadvantage women in social interactions by positioning them in the “out-group” for many career-advancing opportunities. The authors argue that policies alone will not achieve gender equity in the academic medicine workforce. Addressing stereotype-based gender bias is critical for the future of academic medicine. Interventions that treat gender bias as a remediable habit show promise in promoting gender equity and transforming institutional culture to achieve the full participation of women at all career stages. A critical step is to recognize when gender stereotyped assumptions are influencing judgments and decision making in ourselves and others, challenge them as unjust, and deliberately practice replacing them with accurate and objective data.

Concepts: Critical thinking, Gender, University, Sexism, Professor, Tenure, Gender equality, Feminism