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You say potato and I say potahto: Attitudes toward feminism as a function of its subject-selected label

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Abstract

Male and female subjects were given an unlabeled definition of feminism, asked which of four labels they were most likely to use in reference to it, and asked to rate the defined concept on a variety of evaluative dimensions. The four labels were: equal rights for women (ERW), feminism (FEM), women's liberation (WLN), and women's lib (WLB). With the exception of ERW, which remained unchanged, the labels were evaluated differently than they had been in a previous study, in which subjects were assigned one of the four labels at random and asked to rate it. Specifically, it was found that when the labels are self-selected, FEM and WLN are rated more positively and WLB is rated more negatively, than when the labels are randomly assigned. Further, it was found that the various labels are not used with equal frequency, ERW and WLB being more commonly used than FEM and WLN.

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References

  1. Jacobson, M. B. A rose by any other name: Attitudes toward feminism as a function of its label. Sex Roles, 1979, 5, 365–371.

  2. Webster's seventh new collegiate dictionary. Springfield, Mass.: Merriam, 1963.

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Author information

Correspondence to Marsha B. Jacobson.

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Jacobson, M.B. You say potato and I say potahto: Attitudes toward feminism as a function of its subject-selected label. Sex Roles 7, 349–354 (1981). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00288063

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Keywords

  • Social Psychology
  • Female Subject
  • Equal Frequency
  • Evaluative Dimension