Sexism, Psychological Consequences for Women

Sexism refers to prejudicial attitudes and discriminatory actions toward women. This entry further defines sexism and provides a brief review of research pertaining to its psychological consequences for women. In addition, the potential protective role of feminist identity in the association between sexism and negative mental health outcomes is considered. The entry concludes with a discussion of the need to attend to the within-group diversity of women in psychological research.


Sexist attitudes encompass multiple beliefs that serve to maintain the subordinate status of women. Examples include endorsement of traditional gender roles that relegate women to positions that tend to be undervalued (e.g., caretaker), hostility toward women who violate traditional gender role expectations, and the denial of the existence of sexism. In addition to these more negative ...

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