Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Greer-Medley, Tawanda


Transphobia research has focused on predictors and correlations of prejudice toward transgender people. Consistently, male participants have higher transphobic attitudes compared to female participants in various studies. Further, males are overrepresented in crimes against transgender people. However, these studies were correlational and causation cannot be determined. Masculinity researchers outside of psychology have discussed maintenance of masculine privilege as a motivator for oppressive beliefs and actions. Thus, the goal of this study was to provide an experimental study of causes for increased transphobic attitudes in men, based on sociological and gender studies’ research on hegemonic masculinity. To test this, participants were given false feedback that masculinity score was either “feminine” (the experimental group) or “similar to their age group” (the control group). Results of the present study indicated participants in the experimental group reported nearly statistically significantly greater transphobia than those in the control group, p = .047. Although the findings were not significant, further research is needed to validate these findings. The study provides implications for future research on causes of transphobic attitudes and behaviors through sociological frameworks of power and privilege in the context of gender.




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