International Society of Political Psychology

Conference Abstracts

The effect of status and masculine generics (or their alternatives) on the recall of feminine exempl

Magda M. Formanowicz, Warsaw School of Social Sciences and Humanities; Sylwia Bedynska, Warsaw School of Social Sciences and Humanities; Aleksandra Cislak, Warsaw School

Conference: ISPP 2011
Affiliation: Warsaw School of Social Sciences and Humanities
Research Area: Social inequality and social change

In many languages with grammatical gender, masculine occupational titles (either singular or plural) have a generic meaning and may be used to describe both men and women. Previous research has shown (ex. Stahlberg, Sczesny and Braun, 2001) that generic forms are male-biased and people asked to specify politicians recall more masculine referents than when asked to recall a person dealing with politics or men and women working in politics - forms that are used in gender neutral or both gender inclusive context. In two studies it will be demonstrated that this effect results not only from usage of a specific form (masculine noun used in a generic sense, gender neutral or both gender inclusive terms) but depends also on status of occupations. Presented results will be discussed in a theroetical background of the backlash effect (Rudman, 1998) and followed by an analysis of possible practical implications.