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Empathy, sex role orientation, and narcissism

Abstract

A narcissism model of sex roles was used to examine empathy and other forms of interpersonal reactivity. Questionnaires were administered to 141 males and 232 females sampled from an undergraduate population that was 89% Caucasian and 11% mostly African-American minority. A Peer-Group Dependence measure of narcissistic idealization correlated predictably with femininity, empathy, and a communal orientation; and a Pseudoautonomy measure of narcissistic grandiosity displayed expected linkages with masculinity and Machiavellianism. Multiple regressions confirmed that the self could be defined in terms of both its mature and immature features; and confirmatory factor analyses indicated that the narcissism model was somewhat superior to a sex roles model in describing the often complex interrelationships among measures of sex roles, narcissism, and interpersonal reactivity.

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Correspondence to P. J. Watson.

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The contributions of Dr. Bernard E. Whitley, Jr., and one anonymous reviewer are gratefully acknowledged.

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Watson, P.J., Biderman, M.D. & Sawrie, S.M. Empathy, sex role orientation, and narcissism. Sex Roles 30, 701–723 (1994). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01544671

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01544671

Keywords

  • Social Psychology
  • Confirmatory Factor Analysis
  • Immature Feature
  • Role Model
  • Dependence Measure