Self-Perceived Origins of Attitudes Toward Homosexuality

Jason D. Hans, Megan Kersey, Claire Kimberly

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Undergraduate students (N = 417) at a large southern university responded to open-ended questions designed to assess self-perceived origins of attitudes toward homosexuality and circumstances that may prompt a shift in attitudes. Inductively coded responses pointed to a positive correlation between attitudes toward homosexuality and experience interacting with gay men or lesbians; this is discussed in the context of Allport's (1954) contact hypothesis and Herek's (1984, 1986) theory of functional attitudes. Implications are discussed for education and intervention efforts aimed at facilitating understanding and tolerance of gay men and lesbians.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4-17
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Homosexuality
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2012


  • attitudes
  • gay men
  • homosexuality
  • lesbians

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Psychology (all)


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