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02-04-2015 | Empirical Research | Uitgave 2/2016

Journal of Youth and Adolescence 2/2016

Gender Role Attitudes and Male Adolescent Dating Violence Perpetration: Normative Beliefs as Moderators

Tijdschrift:
Journal of Youth and Adolescence > Uitgave 2/2016
Auteurs:
H. Luz McNaughton Reyes, Vangie A. Foshee, Phyllis Holditch Niolon, Dennis E. Reidy, Jeffrey E. Hall

Abstract

Commonly used dating violence prevention programs assume that promotion of more egalitarian gender role attitudes will prevent dating violence perpetration. Empirical research examining this assumption, however, is limited and inconsistent. The current study examined the longitudinal association between gender role attitudes and physical dating violence perpetration among adolescent boys (n = 577; 14 % Black, 5 % other race/ethnicity) and examined whether injunctive (i.e., acceptance of dating violence) and descriptive (i.e., beliefs about dating violence prevalence) normative beliefs moderated the association. As expected, the findings suggest that traditional gender role attitudes at T1 were associated with increased risk for dating violence perpetration 18 months later (T2) among boys who reported high, but not low, acceptance of dating violence (injunctive normative beliefs) at T1. Descriptive norms did not moderate the effect of gender role attitudes on dating violence perpetration. The results suggest that injunctive norms and gender role attitudes work synergistically to increase risk for dating violence perpetration among boys; as such, simultaneously targeting both of these constructs may be an effective prevention approach.

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