How ambivalent sexism toward women and men support rape myth acceptance

Kristine M. Chapleau, Debra L. Oswald, Brenda L. Russell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

79 Scopus citations


The goal of this study was to determine how ambivalent sexism toward women and men are both associated with rape myth acceptance. The Illinois Rape Myth Acceptance scale, Ambivalent Sexism Inventory, and Ambivalence toward Men Inventory were completed by 409 participants. Hostile sexism toward women positively correlated with rape myth acceptance. For benevolent sexism toward women, complementary gender differentiation was positively associated with rape myth acceptance whereas protective paternalism was negatively associated. Benevolent sexism toward men, but not hostile sexism, positively correlated with rape myth acceptance. Further, for female participants higher maternalism toward men corresponded with higher rape myth acceptance. These findings suggest that sexist beliefs toward both women and men are important for understanding the support of rape myths.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)131-136
Number of pages6
JournalSex Roles
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Jul 1 2007



  • Ambivalent sexism toward men
  • Ambivalent sexism toward women
  • Rape myths

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Social Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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