Development of Gender Differences in Children's Responses to Animated Entertainment
This study examined gender differences in children's responses to animated scenes from an action adventure versus a sad film, and to animated previews of a prototypical “male” versus “female” movie. Females were more likely than males to express sadness in response to the sad scene, and gender differences in intensities of sadness increased with age. Children were much more likely to stereotype the “male” preview as most liked by other boys, whereas the majority of children perceived the “female” preview as liked by either gender equally. In terms of enjoyment of the “male” and “female” previews, gender differences in enjoyment of the “male” preview were apparent only among children who perceived the film as more appealing to boys, and gender differences in enjoyment of the “female” preview were apparent only among children who perceived the film as more appealing to girls. Implications for children's programming are discussed.