Who are tomboys and why should we study them?

J. Michael Bailey, Kathleen T. Bechtold, Sheri A. Berenbaum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Tomboys are girls who behave like boys and, as such, challenge some theories of sex-typing. We recruited tomboys (N = 60) ages 4-9 through the media and compared them with their sisters (N = 15) and brothers (N = 20) on measures of playmate preference, sex-typed activities and interests, and gender identity. On nearly all measures, tomboys were substantially and significantly more masculine than their sisters, but they were generally less masculine than their brothers. We outline some scientific benefits of studying tomboys and describe some goals and initial findings of the Tomboy Project.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)333-341
Number of pages9
JournalArchives of Sexual Behavior
Volume31
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2002

Keywords

  • Gender development
  • Gender nonconformity
  • Gender roles
  • Sex-atypicality
  • Tomboys

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)

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