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ERIC Number: ED527796
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 146
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1245-9031-8
Gender Role Stereotypes in the "Dick and Jane" Basal Reader Series and Sustained Impression upon Women of the Baby Boom Generation
Hutchinson, Mary Louise
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Widener University
This study explored the perceptions of women of the Baby Boom generation regarding the potential impact of gender role stereotypes contained in the children's reading series utilized in elementary school classrooms from 1946 through 1964. Particular emphasis was placed upon the prominent reading series of the Baby Boom Era, the Scott, Foresman and Company "Dick and Jane" basal reading series (Gray, Monroe, Artley, Arbuthnot & Gray, 1956). The secondary purpose of this study was to assess the aesthetic/affective response to the "Dick and Jane" basal reading series as correlated with women's sex role identity (as determined by the Bem Sex Role Inventory, 1981). The researcher looked at a stratified random sampling of women born within the years 1946 through 1964. The sampled population was drawn from a Fortune 500 corporation, a Christian church, a women's civic organization, and teachers and educational specialists from a suburban school district in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Quantitative data was gathered using "The Bem Sex Role Inventory" (Bem, 1981) which was utilized as the first test instrument to determine participant trait categorization as feminine, masculine, or androgynous (N = 59). Qualitative data in the form of narrative aesthetic/affective open-ended written response was gathered from researcher designed prompts in the form of e-mail communication (n = 54). Participants indicated a strong awareness of gender role stereotypes contained within the early basal reading series, most notably, the Scott Foresman "Dick and Jane" series. When asked whether early reading experiences with these books created lasting impressions that may have influenced their later adult choices regarding family and career, the majority of participants (n = 37) reported that such influence did not occur through their reading experiences. Some participants (n = 11) reported assumed influences based upon commonalities with the basal reader storylines regarding family values and career choices. Nearly all participants reported that adult choices regarding family and career were based upon varied life experiences and events when making these choices. Although books, along with television, film, and other media may have contributed to the creation of lasting influences upon later adult choices regarding family and career, participants noted that these influences did not supersede influences of family and personal interactions. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Pennsylvania
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Bem Sex Role Inventory