Sex Roles

, Volume 37, Issue 11, pp 885–904

“I’m not a feminist, but…”: factors contributing to the discrepancy between pro-feminist orientation and feminist social identity


DOI: 10.1007/BF02936345

Cite this article as:
Williams, R. & Wittig, M.A. Sex Roles (1997) 37: 885. doi:10.1007/BF02936345


Using constructs from theories of social identity and collective action, hypotheses were developed concerning variables that predict pro-feminist orientation among those who resist the feminist label, as compared to variables that predict willingness to identify as a feminist. Predictors that were expected to be important to the latter, but not the former group, included (1) positive evaluation of feminists, (2) belief in collective action, (3) recognition of discrimination, and (4) previous exposure to feminist thought. The sample consisted of 47 male and 94 female college students (60% Anglo, 16% Asian-American, 7% African-American, 9% Hispanic, and 7% “Other”), aged 17–50 years. Using separate multiple regressions, support for the differential inclusion of all but the third variable was found. Also as predicted, the genders did not differ in pro-feminist orientation, although college women were more willing than college men to identify as feminist. Results are discussed as potentially important to understanding willingness to engage in collective advocacy.

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Claremont Graduate SchoolNorthridge
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyCalifornia State University, NorthridgeNorthridge

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