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The effect of sexist attitudes on the perception of visual artists by community college and university students

By Kyra Belan


This study compared the effects of sexist labeling on the perceptions of visual artists by the community college and university students and determined their sex role orientation. The 370 students were shown five slides of an artist\u27s works and were given six versions of an artist\u27s biography. It contained embedded sexual labeling (woman, girl, person/ she, man, guy, person/he). The Artist Evaluation Questionnaire was administered to the female and male community college and university students that required the students to evaluate the female and male artists on several aspects of affective and cognitive measures. The questionnaire consisted of 9 items that had to be rated by the participants. In addition, the students filled out the Demographic Questionnaire and the BEM Sex Role Inventory, titled the Attitude Questionnaire. The Analysis of Variance testing procedures were administered to analyze the responses. The results disclosed gender differences in students\u27 ratings. The female artist\u27s work, when the artist was referred to by the neutral sexual label, \u22person\u22, received significantly higher ratings from the female students. The male students gave the female artist her highest ratings when she was referred to by the low status sexual label, \u22girl\u22. Both sexes did not express statistically significant preferences for any of the male sexual labels. Gender difference became apparent when it was found that female students rated both sexes equally, and their ratings were lower than those of the male students. The male students rated the female artist\u27s work higher than the work of the male artist. The analysis of the sex role inventory questionnaire revealed the absence of the feminine (expressive) and masculine (instrumental) personalities among the students. The personalities of almost all the students were androgynous, with a few within the range of the near feminine, and a few within the range of the near masculine. The study reveals that there are differences in perception of sexual labels among the community college and university students

Topics: Art, Psychology, Art appreciation, Psychological aspects, Sexism in art, Higher Education
Publisher: FIU Digital Commons
Year: 1992
OAI identifier: oai:digitalcommons.fiu.edu:etd-2711

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