A biased representation of the desirability of the masculine and feminine trait terms included within a questionnaire can compel test respondents to characterize males and females in a comparably biased manner. The current study assessed whether the English language might itself contain more male-valued or female-valued terms. Ratings of desirability, masculinity, and femininity were obtained on a representative sample of 1,710 trait terms. The results suggested that the language is not itself gender neutral, in that it does appear to have more female-valued than male-valued terms. However, the language might not be described as biased if this is an accurate representation of the traits exhibited by males and females and the desirability of the traits. Implications of the results for the assessment and diagnosis of personality are discussed.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Journal of Personality and Social Psychology|
|State||Published - Dec 1999|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science