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Benevolent Sexism, Attachment, and Chivalry: Examining the Role of Unfulfilled Needs in Contexts of Dependence

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thesis
posted on 13.07.2021, 20:26 by Sieng, Vanessa

Previous research demonstrate links between men’s and women’s endorsement of benevolent sexism and the provision/acceptance of chivalrous behaviours that increase women’s dependence on men. Research also shows that men who are relatively more anxiously attached also tend to be more endorsing of benevolent sexism as it facilitates dependence and fulfilment of relational needs. Thus, men’s preoccupations with satisfying their relational needs should heighten their tendency to behave chivalrously. This thesis examined whether attachment anxiety moderates the link between individual’s endorsement of benevolent sexism and their provision/acceptance of dependency-oriented support—behaviours that emphasise men’s high status and women’s dependence. This study also tested whether men providing, and women accepting support predicts fulfilment of relational needs. Study 1 and 2 (N = 354) examined links between endorsement of benevolent sexism and dependency-oriented dating behaviours in online samples. Results replicated the existing link between men’s endorsement of benevolent sexism and dependency-oriented support, but did not lend support for the moderating role of attachment anxiety. In Study 3, romantic couples (N = 158) discussed personal goals with one another and coders observed levels of dependency-oriented support provision and acceptance. The relationship between benevolent sexism and dependency-oriented support for men was once again replicated. Novel interactions also emerged which suggests that holding derogatory beliefs about women may also motivate men’s dependency-oriented support giving. Predictions about the role of attachment anxiety and need fulfilment produced unexpected findings demonstrating that it may be a lack of avoidant rather than attachment anxiety that moderates the relationship between benevolent sexism and dependency-oriented support. These studies illustrate that chivalrous, dependency-oriented behaviours cannot be examined in isolation from beliefs about gender roles, relational schemas, and context.

History

Advisor 1

Hammond, Matt

Copyright Date

13/07/2021

Date of Award

13/07/2021

Publisher

Victoria University of Wellington - Te Herenga Waka

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Psychology

Degree Grantor

Victoria University of Wellington - Te Herenga Waka

Degree Level

Masters

Degree Name

Master of Science

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code

1 PURE BASIC RESEARCH

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis

Language

en_NZ

Victoria University of Wellington School

School of Psychology