ERIC Number: ED174864
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Androgyny and Moral and Ego Development.
Liberman, Dov; Gaa, John P.
Traditionally, "masculine" males and "feminine" females are seen as being the most mentally healthy individuals. Recently this view has been challenged by Sandra Bem and other researchers in the area of sex role identity. Bem (1975) maintains that those individuals whose behavioral and emotional repertoires incorporate aspects of both masculine and feminine behaviors are more likely to display adaptive behaviors across a variety of situations. However, Block (1973) has posited that sex role development proceeds in an invariant sequence through the stages of gender identity and self-enhancement, to stages of conformity to external sex role standards and eventually internalized sex role standards, through stages of sex role differentation and, finally, androgyny. One's sex role orientation would be one aspect of one's general personality development. If this is so, it should be possible to predict an individual's sex role orientation from his or her general personality development. To test this hypothesis, 21 subjects (15 females and six males) were administered the Bem Sex Role Inventory (BSRI) and Loevinger's sentence completion test. Subsequently, all subjects were individually administered Kohlberg interviews of moral development. Since there were not enough subjects to allow the use of sample medians in order to assign subjects to sex role orientation, scores on the masculine and feminine scales as the dependent variables were utilized. No significant results were obtained, probably due to the serious problems surrounding the androgyny instrumentation. Preliminary evidence from a related study also brings into question the validity of self-reports obtained with this instrument. It thus appears premature to dismiss a developmental hypothesis of sex role development. With the resolution of instrumentation issues in this area it is hoped that the development of sex role orientation can be more fully studied from a developmental perspective. (Author/CKJ)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Bem Sex Role Inventory
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (Toronto, Ontario, Canada, August, 1978)