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Protecting the Ladies: Benevolent Sexism, Heteronormativity, and Partisanship in Online Discussions of Gender-Neutral Bathrooms

Blumell, L. ORCID: 0000-0003-4608-9269, Huemmer, J. and Sternadori, M. (2018). Protecting the Ladies: Benevolent Sexism, Heteronormativity, and Partisanship in Online Discussions of Gender-Neutral Bathrooms. Mass Communication and Society, doi: 10.1080/15205436.2018.1547833

Abstract

The recent adoption of bathroom bills restricting trans* people’s access to public bathrooms of their choice in the United States has elicited a vigorous public debate invoking benevolent sexism, heteronormativity, and partisanship. This analysis includes 9,764 online comments posted on the 13 most-shared articles or blog posts about trans* bathroom accommodation from September 2015 to September 2016. The common themes in such discussions were arguments promoting benevolent sexism, including that women and girls need protection by men and from men and that sex differences are natural. Results showed that support for trans* access to public bathrooms was most prevalent in discussions on left-leaning sites, whereas opposition was most prevalent in discussions on right-leaning sites. Most, but not all, benevolent-sexism themes were prevalent in comments on right-leaning sites. The results are discussed in the context of their theoretical implications for the literature of benevolent sexism and heteronormativity.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Mass Communication and Society on 14 Nov 2018, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/15205436.2018.1547833.
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
Departments: School of Arts & Social Sciences > Journalism
URI: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/21159
[img] Text - Accepted Version
This document is not freely accessible until 14 May 2020 due to copyright restrictions.

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