Attitude changes in children after exposure to stories about women in traditional or nontraditional occupations

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Previous research has demonstrated that children's literature frequently presents girls and women only in limited, “traditional” roles, with the result that girls exposed to such literature may limit their own self-perceptions and aspirations. In an experiment with 4th graders, 29 girls were read 2 stories with women in traditional roles or 2 with women in nontraditional roles. Attitude changes were measured by a picture-choice test, 2 job checklists, and 2 adjective checklists. As predicted, girls who heard nontraditional stories rated traditionally male jobs and characteristics as appropriate for females more than girls who heard traditional stories. Results underline the importance of nonsexist books and textbooks in widening girls' aspirations and self-images. (9 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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