This article focuses on examining the effects misogynistic peer norms can have on bystander intervention for sexual aggression in men ages 18-35. The article discusses how the United States' misogynistic peer norms can inhibit a man's likelihood of intervening when witnessing sexual aggression due to what they believe their peers' expectations to be. However, the article also reports on a rather new concept to bystander literature, Masculine Gender Role Stress (MGRS). The researcher's initial hypothesis was that this stress can cause men to act similarly to how the U.S.'s misogynistic peer norms can. The data shows this can be the case for some men, but in other men, it can create a call for bravery that entices some to intervene.
When is it "Manly" to Intervene in Sexual Aggression?
What would a "real man" do?
Reflects a man's tendency to cognitively appraise gender-relevant situations as threatening or stressful
Considered to be a risk factor for sexual aggression in college men due to their desire to avoid appearing sexually inferior to their peers
What Roles do Gender Norms Play?
What will my
Men underestimate their peers' discomfort with sexist behavior, which may prevent them from intervening
Traditional misogynistic male gender norms associated with masculine gender role stress promotes physical, intellectual, and sexual superiority
When exposed to a misogynistic peer norm, men with high masculine gender role stress responded sooner than men with low masculine gender role stress
If men encounter stress around their belief that being “heroic” or “brave” promotes sexual social status, they are more likely to intervene when witnessing dangerous sexual violence
Masculine gender role stress may promote bystander behavior in men if when they adhere to the sexual norm that men should obtain social status.
Create prevention for the Future
Encourage young men on college campuses to have more open conversations about sexual aggression
Promote gender norms that are based on equality among the sexes
Teach that all sexual aggression should be considered "dangerous" and not acceptable