ERIC Number: ED156928
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977
Reference Count: 0
Old Men and Young Women: Partners in Discrimination.
Walsh, R. Patricia; Connor, Catherine L.
Previous research has suggested that identical performances by men and women are often evaluated differently. Men with high-quality accomplishments are perceived more positively than women, while unsuccessful men are rated more negatively than their female counterparts. This study extended the research by including elderly stimulus persons to compare attitudes toward the young and the old. Participants evaluated either a good or a bad essay supposedly written by one of four target persons: a 24-year-old woman; a 24-year-old man; a 63-year-old woman; or a 63-year-old man. The quality of the young man's and the elderly woman's essay profoundly affected evaluations of them, but essay quality had no impact on ratings of young women and old men. The data suggest that participants' negative stereotypes caused them to expect the accomplishments of young women and old men to be of lower quality than those of young men or old women. Possible explanations for the higher expectations for elderly women's performance are, first, that participants felt that she was a deviant case (superior despite being old and female); or, second, that our culture possesses a rather positive stereotype of all elderly women. (Author)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A