Original Article

Sex Roles

, Volume 62, Issue 9, pp 623-634

First online:

Bystander Sexism in the Intergroup Context: The Impact of Cat-calls on Women’s Reactions Towards Men

  • Stephenie R. ChaudoirAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, University of Connecticut, 406 Babbidge Rd.Bradley University Email author 
  • , Diane M. QuinnAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, University of Connecticut, 406 Babbidge Rd.

Rent the article at a discount

Rent now

* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.

Get Access


Despite the fact that sexism is an inherently intergroup phenomenon, women’s group-level responses to sexism have received relatively little empirical attention. We examine the intergroup reactions experienced by 114 female students at a U.S. university in New England who imagined being a bystander to a sexist cat-call remark or control greeting. Results indicate that women experienced greater negative intergroup emotions and motivations towards the outgroup of men after overhearing the cat-call remark. Further, the experience of group-based anger mediated the relationship between the effect of study condition on the motivation to move against, or oppose, men. Results indicate that bystanders can be affected by sexism and highlights how the collective groups of men and women can be implicated in individual instances of sexism.


Sexism Bystander Intergroup emotions Cat-call Gender identity