Summary and Info
This research examines gender as status, and gender and control (which sharethe meaning of dominance) as identities by analyzing negative and positive behaviorof married couples whose task is to resolve disagreements in their marriage.On the basis of recent extensions of expectation states theory dealingwith emotion-based behavior, we hypothesize that husbands will be more likelythan wives to use negative behavior in conversation. On the basis of identitytheory and the meanings of emotion-based behavior, we also hypothesize thatthose with a more masculine and more dominant control identity will be morelikely to use negative behavior in interaction, and that those with a morefeminine and less dominant control identity will be more likely to use positivebehavior. We test these predictions on a representative sample of newlymarried couples, using videotaped conversations. Although the results are consistentwith predictions from identity theory, they are inconsistent with predictionsfollowing from the extension of expectation states theory. Specifically,wives rather than husbands employ more negative behavior in conversation.The results, paradoxically, are different for being female than for beingfeminine, and different for being male than for being masculine; nonetheless,we argue that understanding the implications of gender as both statusand identity helps to resolve the paradox.
More About the Author
Stetson University is a private, nonprofit university with four colleges and schools located across the I-4 corridor in Central Florida, United States, with the primary undergraduate campus located in DeLand.
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