Feminists are actually less hostile to men than non-feminists, resentful of their roles

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martin dufresne
Feminists are actually less hostile to men than non-feminists, resentful of their roles

by Kristin J. Anderson, Melinda Kanner and Nisreen Elsayegh of the University of Houston

Published in the Psychology of Women Quarterly, Volume 33, Issue 2, Pages 216-224, June 2009

Despite the popular belief that feminists dislike men, few studies have actually examined the empirical accuracy of this stereotype. The present study examined self-identified feminists' and nonfeminists' attitudes toward men. An ethnically diverse sample (N = 488) of college students responded to statements from the Ambivalence toward Men Inventory (AMI; Glick & Fiske, 1999). Contrary to popular beliefs, feminists reported lower levels of hostility toward men than did nonfeminists. The persistence of the myth of the man-hating feminist is explored.

One of the researchers reported, "Our work finds that, indeed, non-feminists believe in traditional gender roles such as men being breadwinners and women being caregivers. At the same time, these non-feminists actually appear to resent the confines of the traditional roles they advocate, which presents a paradox for women and men in traditional heterosexual relationships."

Blogger Jess McCabe discusses these results in greater detail in her "f-word" blog, including an earlier 16-nation study which found that the greater the gender inequality in a country, the greater the hostility toward men.




According to one of those tables, while feminists showed less hostility towards men, they also showed less benevolence towards men.

Anyhow, this is great!  I just posted this on Facebook and told everyone in my office about it. :D

Bookish Agrarian

Ambivalence toward Men Inventory


I know this is a very serious study and it certainly confirms my life experience - however - that term just strikes my funnybone for some reason.

I can see a whole new cottage industry creating Inventories

Ambivalence towards Conservatives Inventory

Ambivalence towards hockey inventory

Ambivalence towards people with green sweaters inventory

and so on.

I just love that phrase!


I laughed when I read that too, BA! :D

Snert Snert's picture

I agree.  I found the idea of a special survey to measure ambivalence toward men kind of funny.  Mind you, I was thinking of "ambivalence" in the vernacular sense, like being ambivalent about a food ("I could take it or leave it") whereas it seems that the Inventory actually measures on two axes:  hostility toward men and benevolence toward men.  It includes questions like:


"Men are less likely to fall apart in emergencies"
"Even if both work, woman should take care of man at home"


"Men act like babies when they're sick"
"Men pay lip service to equality but can't handle it"


Along with a modified Likert scale for responses ("Strongly agree", "Agree", etc., but with NO NEUTRAL).


Apparently it's been battle tested and is rigorous. But the title does still make me laugh.