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Masculinity, Femininity, and American Political Behavior$
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Monika L McDermott

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190462802

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190462802.001.0001

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Gendered Personalities and Political Behavior

Gendered Personalities and Political Behavior

Chapter:
(p.1) Chapter 1 Gendered Personalities and Political Behavior
Source:
Masculinity, Femininity, and American Political Behavior
Author(s):

Monika L. McDermott

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190462802.003.0001

The book’s introduction provides the theoretical basis for the examination of gendered personalities—masculine and feminine traits—and political attitudes and behavior. It takes the reader through the psychological and political science literature related to this topic, providing a foundation for the book’s overall theory that gendered personalities affect individuals’ politics in multiple ways. Masculine personalities are aggressive, individualistic, and dominant, while feminine personalities are warm, compassionate, and gentle. These personalities translate directly into US politics. Among other things, our political parties are gendered in both their issues and images—Democrats are the feminine party and Republicans are the masculine one. This book’s intuitive argument is that individuals’ masculine and feminine personality traits should affect their political attitudes and party preferences similarly to the gendered nature of our political world—for example, masculinity should contribute to a preference for the Republican Party while femininity should increase Democratic affiliation.

Keywords:   gender, political behavior, personality, masculinity, femininity, gendered personalities, political attitudes

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