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Video games tied to sexism in teenagers, says study

March 20,2017 15:24

If your teen is playing more video games, he's more likely to develop sexist attitudes and gender stereotypes, says a new study released last Friday. French and US researchers who conducted the study surveyed 13,520 French youth aged between 11 and 19 ...and more »



Sarah Tew
If your teen is playing more video games, he's more likely to develop sexist attitudes and gender stereotypes, says a new study released last Friday.French and US researchers who conducted the study surveyed 13,520 French youth aged between 11 and 19 from Grenoble and Lyon. Participants had to answer questions relating to the amount of time spent on video game play and their attitudes to women and gender stereotypes. Results from the study, published in the Frontiers in Psychology journal, proved a positive correlation between both, with levels of sexism found higher in males.Women are generally "underrepresented" in video games, according to the study. When they are however, they are frequently depicted as "characters needing help or holding passive or instrumental role," if not as "sex objects to win."The study is the first large-scale research of the subject. However, researchers recognised several limitations to their research model in identifying the actual causes behind sexist attitudes in teenage video game players, amongst which includes the possibility that "individuals with sexist orientations spend more time playing video games."

A similar study was published two years ago but generally showed no correlation between long-term gaming and sexist attitudes. In an interview with Kotaku, the researchers suggested that other factors such as family and peer influences contribute more to sexist attitudes than gaming does.

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