Advertisement

Journal of Nonverbal Behavior

, Volume 13, Issue 3, pp 141–153 | Cite as

The effects of interruption, gender, and status on interpersonal perceptions

  • Laura F. Robinson
  • Harry T. Reis
Article

Abstract

This study examined: (1) how violations in turn-taking, ie., interruption, are perceived, (2) whether attributions toward an interrupter vary according to gender and status, and (3) how individuals who adopt cross-sex interruptive styles are seen. Subjects listened to a four-minute audiotape of a conversation and rated conversants on masculinity, femininity, competence, sociability, attractiveness, and traditionality. Sex of interrupter, style of interruption (statement, question, no interruption), and status were varied. Results suggest that interruption leads to negative personality attributions. Interrupters were seen as less sociable and more assertive than individuals who did not interrupt. They were also perceived as more masculine and less feminine than those who did not interrupt. Few sex differences emerged, indicating that women who interrupt are not penalized relative to men.

Keywords

Social Psychology Negative Personality Interpersonal Perception Personality Attribution 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Costrich, N., Feinstein, J., Kidder, L., Marecek, J., & Pascale, L. (1975). When stereotypes hurt: Three studies of penalties for sex-role reversals.Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 11 520–530.Google Scholar
  2. Deaux, K., & Major, B. (1987). Putting gender into context: An interactive model of gender-related behavior.Psychological Review, 94 369–389.Google Scholar
  3. Dindia, K. (1987). The effects of sex of subject and sex of partner on interruptions.Human Communication Research, 13 345–371.Google Scholar
  4. Eagly, A. H. (1983). Gender and social influence: A social psychological analysis.American Psychologist, 38 971–981.Google Scholar
  5. Feather, N. T., & Simon, J. G. (1975). Reactions to male and female success and failure in sex-linked occupations: Impressions of personality, causal attributions, and perceived likelihood of different consequences.Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 31 20–31.Google Scholar
  6. Frieze, I. H., & Ramsey, S. J. (1976). Nonverbal maintenance of traditional sex roles.Journal of Social Issues, 32 133–141.Google Scholar
  7. Hagen, R. L., & Kahn, A. (1975). Discrimination against competent women.Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 5 362–376.Google Scholar
  8. Hall, J. A. (1984).Nonverbal sex differences: Communication accuracy and expressive style. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press.Google Scholar
  9. Henley, N. M. (1973). Power, sex and nonverbal communication.Berkeley Journal of Sociology, 18 1–26.Google Scholar
  10. Henley, N. M., & LaFrance, M. (1984). Gender as culture: Difference and dominance in nonverbal behavior. In A. Wolfgang (Ed.),Nonverbal behavior: Perspectives, applications, and intercultural insights (pp. 351–371). Lewiston, NY: C.J. Hogrefe.Google Scholar
  11. Leffler, A., Gillespie, D., & Conaty, J. (1982). The effects of status differentiation on nonverbal behavior.Social Psychology Quarterly, 45 153–161.Google Scholar
  12. LaFrance, M., & Carmen, B. (1980). The nonverbal display of psychological androgyny.Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 38 36–49.Google Scholar
  13. McMillan, J. R., Clifton, A. K., McGrath, D., & Gale, W. S. (1977). Women's language: Uncertainty or interpersonal sensitivity and emotionality?Sex Roles, 3 545–559.Google Scholar
  14. Porter, N., & Geis, F. (1981). Women and nonverbal leadership cues: When seeing is not believing. In C. Mayo & N. M. Henley (Eds.),Gender and nonverbal behavior (pp. 39–61). New York: Springer-Verlag.Google Scholar
  15. Sacks, H., Schegloff, E. A., & Jefferson, G. (1974). A simplest systematics for the organization of turn-taking for conversation.Language, 50 696–735.Google Scholar
  16. Spence, J. T., & Helmreich, R. L. (1978).Masculinity and femininity. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press.Google Scholar
  17. Whorf, B. L. (1958).Language, thought, and reality: Selected writings. J. B. Carroll (Ed.), Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  18. Zimmerman, D. H. & West, C. (1975). Sex roles, interruptions and silences in conversation. In B. Thorne & N. Henley (Eds.),Language and sex: Difference and dominance (pp. 105–129). Rowley, MA: Newbury House.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Laura F. Robinson
    • 1
  • Harry T. Reis
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of RochesterRochester

Personalised recommendations