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The relationship between sex-role orientation and marital adjustment was investigated. Using a sample of 112 married couples, husbands and wives separately completed the Bem Sex-Role Inventory and the Dyadic Adjustment Scale. The hypotheses tested were based on the assumption that an androgynous sex-role orientation, which incorporates both instrumental and expressive capacities, would be most positively related to self and spouse's marital adjustment, while an undifferentiated orientation would be least related. Results indicated that in general both androgynous and sex-typed individuals and their spouses were significantly higher in marital adjustment than were undifferentiated individuals and their spouses. In addition, spousal sex-role types were found to be related and couples in which both partners were classified as undifferentiated reported the lowest levels of marital adjustment while androgynous couples and sex-typed couples reported greater levels of marital adjustment. The results were discussed in relation to their support for a symbolic interaction/ role theory interpretation of the association between sex-role orientation and marital adjustment.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2224/sbp.1987.15.1.59

Publication date: January 1, 1987

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