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Masculinity still viewed as tied to sexuality
A study into how people perceive masculinity has revealed prejudices exist in society today.
When 158 participants were asked to evaluate a fictional man, their views on him changed dependent on what they were told about his sexual orientation and marital status.
People believed the manliest of characters was one who was married and heterosexual. Conversely, respondents felt that a homosexual man was more feminine, regardless of his marital status.
Single men were considered to be more competent than married men.
Attributes of the respondents also had an influence on how they responded to the fictional character. For instance, those who viewed themselves as masculine were more likely to think of a homosexual as lacking in masculinity.
The study was carried out by Mariana Pinho, a phd student at the University of Lincoln. She conducted her research in Portugal with Gabrielle Poeschl, an associate professor at the University of Porto. The results of the research will be presented today (May 8th) at the British Psychological Society's annual conference.
Ms Pinho suggested that any work that helps to increase "our understanding of the beliefs that surround homosexuality is a crucial step in the effort to reducing prejudice and discrimination".
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