Sex roles as social conventions: The development of children's conceptions of sex-role stereotypes

D. Bruce Carter, Charlotte J. Patterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

83 Scopus citations

Abstract

97 kindergartners and 2nd, 4th, 6th, and 8th graders were interviewed about their conceptions of 4 rule topics: sex-role stereotypes of toys, sex-role stereotypes of adult occupations, conventional table manners, and a natural law. Results indicate that Ss' knowledge of sex-role stereotypes and beliefs in the flexibility and cultural relativity of both sex-role stereotypes and a social convention significantly increased with age. Ss' beliefs in the flexibility and cultural relativity of a natural law decreased with age. Changes in conceptions of sex-role stereotype flexibility occurred concurrently with changes in social-conventional flexibility but were unrelated to changes in conceptions of the natural law. Findings suggest that sex stereotypes and social conventions are different aspects of the single conceptual domain of social convention. (27 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)812-824
Number of pages13
JournalDevelopmental psychology
Volume18
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 1982

Keywords

  • adult occupations &
  • conceptions of sex role stereotypes of toys &
  • natural law, kindergartners vs 2nd vs 4th vs 6th vs 8th graders
  • table manners &

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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