Same-sex imitation

The avoidance of cross-sex models or the acceptance of same-sex models?

Kay Bussey*, David G. Perry

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

63 Citations (Scopus)


This experiment examined whether acceptance of same-sex behavior and rejection of opposite-sex behavior contribute equally to the same-sex imitation effect in both boys and girls. Third- and fourth-grade children observed four male and four female peer models display preferences toward a variety of objects. For each object, only four models were asked for their preferences. In this way, it was possible for the objects to become sex-linked depending on the sex composition of the group of models endorsing a particular item. Subsequently, children were presented with pairwise combinations of the more masculine, feminine, or neutral objects and asked their preference. Results indicated that although there is no difference between boys' and girls' acceptance of same-sex behavior, boys tend to reject opposite-sex behavior more than girls.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)773-784
Number of pages12
JournalSex Roles
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1982
Externally publishedYes


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