The development and correlates of gender role attitudes in African American youth

Chun Bun Lam, Christine Stanik, Susan M. McHale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

This research examined the longitudinal trajectories and family correlates of gender role attitudes in African American youth in a sample of 166 sibling pairs residing with their mothers and fathers. Multilevel modelling revealed that (1) girls and boys exhibited significant declines in gender attitude traditionality from ages 9 to 15 that levelled off through age 18, (2) mothers’ (but not fathers’) gender role attitude traditionality was positively related to youth's attitude traditionality, and (3) within-person variation in mothers’ (but not fathers’) racial discrimination experiences was negatively related to within-person variation in youth's gender role attitude traditionality. The utility of applying a cultural ecological framework within an ethnic homogenous, accelerated longitudinal design to understand African American family processes, in conjunction with the intersectionality between race and gender, is the focus of the discussion. Statement of contribution What is already known on this subject? Gender role attitude traditionality declined for girls, but not for boys, in European and Mexican American families. Little is known about the roles of African American parents in shaping their children's gender development. What does this study add? For African American girls and boys, gender role attitude traditionality declined from ages 9 to 15 and then levelled off through age 18. At the between-person level, African American mothers’, but not fathers’, attitude traditionality was positively linked to that of their children. At the within-person level, African American mothers’, but not fathers’, experiences of racial discrimination were negatively linked to their children's attitude traditionality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)406-419
Number of pages14
JournalBritish Journal of Developmental Psychology
Volume35
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Developmental Neuroscience

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