Sexism

To what extent does the conclusion that there are meaningful sex differences in personality and emotion leave the researcher open to accusations of sexism or sex bias? Glick and Fiske (2001) have argued that even benevolent or nonantipathetic sexism—where sexism is defined as the unwarranted acceptance of sex differences—can influence behaviors in ways unfavourable to women. A commentator on the original article (Sax, 2002) argued that there were actual sex differences between men and women, but Glick and Fiske (2002) affirmed that they were not measuring benevolent sexism in terms of such differences but rather by means of items that "did not access beliefs about well-established sex differences in personality" (p. 445).

The obvious question arising from this dialog among researchers is: "How thoroughly must a sex difference be documented before accepting it as fact will not make a person sexist?" To add to the confusion, Glick and Fiske (2002) maintain that "belief in sex differences, arguably, could be both accurate and sexist" (p. 445).

Because of the overlap between the sexes in terms of most measures of personality and emotion, even those differences accepted as "facts" do not have much power to discriminate successfully between men and women in a majority of cases. This being true, the person using such facts in a discriminative manner might still be liable to accusations of sexism.

Pregnancy And Childbirth

Pregnancy And Childbirth

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