Judgments of sexual orientation and masculinity-femininity based on thin slices of behavior: A cross-cultural comparison

Jaroslava Valentova*, Gerulf Rieger, Jan Havlicek, Joan A W Linsenmeier, J. Michael Bailey

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

33 Scopus citations

Abstract

Studies of North Americans suggest that laypeople can judge the sexual orientation of others with greater than chance accuracy based on brief observations of their behavior (i.e., "gaydar" exists). One factor that appears to contribute to these judgments is targets' degree of masculinity-femininity. However, behaviors related to sexual orientation and to masculinity-femininity might vary across cultures. Thus, cross-cultural work is needed to test whether judgments of sexual orientation are more accurate when targets and raters are from the same culture. American and Czech male targets, 38 homosexual and 41 heterosexual, were videotaped and brief segments of the videotapes were presented to American and Czech raters. Overall, raters' judgments of targets' sexual orientation were related to targets' self-reported sexual orientation. However, the relationship was stronger when targets were judged by raters from their own country. In general, results suggest that there are both cross-cultural similarities and differences in gaydar and in cues related to sexual orientation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1145-1152
Number of pages8
JournalArchives of Sexual Behavior
Volume40
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2011

Keywords

  • Behavioral display
  • Gaydar
  • Gender nonconformity
  • Homosexuality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)

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