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The unexpectedly positive consequences of confronting sexism

Is that not one of the better, and happier, titles for a research study? And it's for real. The study (sorry it's behind a paywall) by Robin Mallett and Dana Wagner of Loyola University Chicago found that:

“Confrontation reduces the future occurrence of biased behavior. If [a man who is challenged after expressing a sexist statement] is motivated to be liked by the confronter, or wishes to present a non-prejudiced image, then he will likely compensate in response to confrontation and change his future behavior.”

It gets better. The men who were confronted about their behavior described a more cordial relationship with their partner than did the men who weren't confronted and “confrontation and mutual liking were both positively associated with sexist language detection.”

The catches-- well first these were college students-- it's not real clear how older men might respond to being confronted about using sexist language (but I have some hypotheses) and second the confrontation was about language not behaviors. But catches aside, as one who has been known to confront people, this study does make me happy.

BTW if you want to read more about it for free, you can here.