Parts of this article were presented at the meeting of the National Women's Studies Association, Minneapolis, June 1988, and at the Western Kentucky University Women's Studies Conference, Bowling Green, Kentucky, September 1988. The writing of this article was supported by grants from the Hewlett-Mellon Foundation and Centre College.
MASCULINE BIAS IN THE ATTRIBUTION OF PERSONHOOD
People = Male, Male = People
Article first published online: 28 JUL 2006
Psychology of Women Quarterly
Volume 15, Issue 3, pages 393–402, September 1991
How to Cite
Hamilton, M. C. (1991), MASCULINE BIAS IN THE ATTRIBUTION OF PERSONHOOD. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 15: 393–402. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-6402.1991.tb00415.x
- Issue published online: 28 JUL 2006
- Article first published online: 28 JUL 2006
Silveira (1980) noted that not just masculine generics, but also neutral terms, have masculine connotations; she called this the “people = male” bias. Her hypothesis takes two forms: people = male, a male is more likely seen as a person than is a female; and male = people, a person is more likely believed to be male than female. A total of 108 female and 91 male college students participated in three studies. Study 1 tested male = people. Participants referring back to a female or male protagonist as a woman/man or as a person were significantly more likely to refer to the male with a nongender-specific term. Studies 2 and 3 tested people = male. In Study 2, reanalysis of data from Hamilton and Henley (1982) showed that hearing unbiased generics promoted male-biased mental imagery in men. In Study 3, participants’imagined “typical person” was significantly more likely to be male than female.