Making Attributions to and Plans to Confront Gender Discrimination: The Role of Optimism


Gretchen Sechrist, Department of Psychology, South Hall, Mansfield University, Mansfield, PA 16933. E-mail:


Three studies demonstrated that optimism increased women's plans to confront gender discrimination. Furthermore, these studies showed that this relation was not a result of attributions to discrimination or perceptions of discriminatory events. Rather, as demonstrated in Study 3, the reason optimists were more likely to indicate that they would confront sexism was that they take an active approach to dealing with discriminatory feedback and expect to have successful outcomes in confronting their perpetrator.