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Sex-role identity and male and female homosexuality


The incidences of sex-role outcome within homosexual and heterosexual male and female young adult samples were compared using a fourfold typology (both masculine and feminine, masculine, feminine, neither masculine nor feminine). Sex-role identity disparities between the female groups were more clear-cut; the most striking difference was the high incidence of masculinity (60%) within the homosexual female group. No significant differences for males were found, although a trend was noted toward higher incidence of femininity and lower incidence of masculinity in homosexuals. The second purpose of the study was to search for possible developmental antecedents to heterosexual deficit in unselected college samples. The same key pattern of psychometric indices was identified for males and females. Low heterosexuality and the closest approximation to the modal sex-role identity among homosexuals of their sex were found in females primarily identified with masculine fathers and low in role consistency and in males primarily identified with feminine mothers and low in role consistency.

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Correspondence to Alfred B. Heilbrun Jr..

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Heilbrun, A.B., Thompson, N.L. Sex-role identity and male and female homosexuality. Sex Roles 3, 65–79 (1977).

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  • Social Psychology
  • Lower Incidence
  • Striking Difference
  • Close Approximation
  • Female Group