Chivalry, Gender Roles, and Sex Stereotypes of Agency and Virtue. T. William Altermatt Bettina Johnson University of Michigan-Flint Rapp Collins Worldwide Dov Cohen University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
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T. William Altermatt Bettina Johnson
University of Michigan-Flint Rapp Collins Worldwide
Dov CohenUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
C. Nathan DeWall Emily LeskinenUniversity of Chicago St. Olaf College
In Study 1, structural equation modeling of questionnaire responses (N = 201) revealed a significant positive relation between chivalry – a set of norms for the protection and provision of women by men – and sexist beliefs. However, this relation was completely mediated by the stereotype that women are less competent and powerful than men, suggesting that chivalry is related to sexist beliefs because it presumes that women are less competent and less suited to positions of authority.
In Study 2, participants evaluated three female subgroups previously found to differ in their perceived virtue and agency. Compared to low-chivalry participants, high-chivalry participants granted significantly more favorable ratings to "homemakers" (high-virtue, low-agency) and significantly less favorable ratings to "career women" (high-agency) and "sexually permissive women” (low-virtue). These results extend Study 1’s findings by suggesting that chivalrous men not only endorse the low-agency stereotype but also disapprove of women who violate this stereotype.
Chivalry Scale (Altermatt, 2001. 10 items, a = .87)
Hostile Sexism Scale (Glick & Fiske, 1996. 11 items, a = .88)
Sexual virtue (6 items, a = .67)
Agency (11 items, a = .92)
.03 (from .58*** without stereotypes)
Attitudes toward Women Scale
-.03 (from .44*** without stereotypes)
CFI = .95, RMSEA = .067. ***p<.001, *p<.01. Paths from virtue to sexism, b<.13, p>.09.
Chivalry x Subgroup, p < .004
Chivalry x Subgroup, p < .02
The pattern of high-chivalry participants rating homemakers higher than professional and sexually permissive women (and low-chivalry participants showing the opposite pattern) was tested using the contrast weights shown above. Contrasts were significant for both males and females, p < .01.