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Associations Between Religious Personality Dimensions and Implicit Homosexual Prejudice

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Personality correlates of implicit and explicit attitudes toward homosexual and heterosexual individuals were examined within a sample of predominantly Protestant college students in the south-central United States. Implicit attitudes were measured with the Implicit Association Test, a computer program that recorded reaction times as participants categorized symbols (of heterosexual individuals and gay men) and adjectives (good or bad words). Participants also completed self-report measures of religious fundamentalism (RF), Christian orthodoxy (CO), right-wing authoritarianism (RWA), impression management (IM), and attitudes toward heterosexuals, gay men, and lesbians. Participants displayed fairly negative implicit and explicit attitudes toward homosexual relative to heterosexual individuals. Consistent with previous research, RF, CO, RWA, and IM were associated with increases in self-reported homosexual prejudice. Religious fundamentalism was the strongest predictor of a negative implicit attitude toward gay men relative to heterosexuals.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Wade C. Rowatt is Associate Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Baylor University, One Bear Place #97334, Waco, TX 76798., Email: 2: Jo-Ann Tsang is Assistant Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Baylor University, One Bear Place #97334, Waco, TX 76798., Email: 3: Jessica Kelly, Brooke LaMartina, Michelle McCullers, and April McKinley were undergraduates at Baylor University when this study was conducted. These co-authors made equal contributions and agreed to share third-authorship.

Publication date: September 1, 2006


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