Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

How sexual power can be disempowering

Date:
October 1, 2012
Source:
Springer Science+Business Media
Summary:
The commonly held belief that men should dominate sexually can disempower both women and men, according to a new study.

The commonly held belief that men should dominate sexually can disempower both women and men, according to a new study.

Related Articles


Gender roles and norms play a key role in sexual behavior between men and women. It is often assumed that men should dominate women sexually. This assumption may lead to loss of both power and the ability to control sexual behavior among women and men, as well as lead to increased sexual risk-taking, such as not using a female condom. The new study, by Dr. Lisa Rosenthal from Yale University in the US, and her colleagues, is published online in Springer's journal Sex Roles.

Social dominance orientation is a measure of people's level of support for social power inequalities and hierarchy. The belief is linked to greater hostile sexism, more negative attitudes towards women's rights, a greater tolerance of sexual harassment and a greater preference for traditional gender roles. Rosenthal and team examined whether the extent to which both women and men endorse social dominance orientation explains gender dominance and dynamics in heterosexual relationships.

A total of 357 undergraduate women and 126 undergraduate men from a Northeastern US university took part in the study. Participants were asked to complete a questionnaire on a computer, next to which there was a bowl of female condoms. The researchers assessed the students' social dominance orientation, the extent to which they believed that men should dominate sexually, how confident they felt in sexual situations, as well as the number of female condoms they took away with them.

Overall, women were less likely than men to endorse the view that men should dominate sexually. The more men and women believed that social power inequalities and hierarchy were valid, the more likely they were to endorse the belief that men should dominate sexually, and the less likely they were to feel confident in sexual situations and consider using female condoms.

The authors conclude: "These findings suggest that beliefs about power may play a key role in both women's and men's attitudes to sexual behavior, and potentially their decisions to protect themselves during sexual activity. Results highlight that social dominance orientation and dynamics in heterosexual relationships do not only hurt women, but also men because they potentially decrease their sexual self-efficacy and interest in female condoms as well."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Springer Science+Business Media. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Lisa Rosenthal, Sheri R. Levy, Valerie A. Earnshaw. Social Dominance Orientation Relates to Believing Men Should Dominate Sexually, Sexual Self-Efficacy, and Taking Free Female Condoms Among Undergraduate Women and Men. Sex Roles, 2012; DOI: 10.1007/s11199-012-0207-6

Cite This Page:

Springer Science+Business Media. "How sexual power can be disempowering." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 October 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121001095517.htm>.
Springer Science+Business Media. (2012, October 1). How sexual power can be disempowering. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 27, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121001095517.htm
Springer Science+Business Media. "How sexual power can be disempowering." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121001095517.htm (accessed January 27, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How Technology Is Ruining Snow Days For Students

How Technology Is Ruining Snow Days For Students

Newsy (Jan. 25, 2015) More schools are using online classes to keep from losing time to snow days, but it only works if students have Internet access at home. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Weird Things Couples Do When They Lose Their Phone

Weird Things Couples Do When They Lose Their Phone

BuzzFeed (Jan. 24, 2015) Did you back it up? Do you even know how to do that? Video provided by BuzzFeed
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smart Wristband to Shock Away Bad Habits

Smart Wristband to Shock Away Bad Habits

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Jan. 23, 2015) A Boston start-up is developing a wristband they say will help users break bad habits by jolting them with an electric shock. Ben Gruber reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amazing Technology Allows Blind Mother to See Her Newborn Son

Amazing Technology Allows Blind Mother to See Her Newborn Son

RightThisMinute (Jan. 23, 2015) Not only is Kathy seeing her newborn son for the first time, but this is actually the first time she has ever seen a baby. Kathy and her sister, Yvonne, have been legally blind since childhood, but thanks to an amazing new technology, eSight glasses, which gives those who are legally blind the ability to see, she got the chance to see the birth of her son. It&apos;s an incredible moment and an even better story. Video provided by RightThisMinute
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins