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Looking Beyond Numbers: The Effects of Gender Status, Job Prestige, and Occupational Gender-Typing on Tokenism Processes

Janice D. Yoder
Social Psychology Quarterly
Vol. 57, No. 2 (Jun., 1994), pp. 150-159
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2786708
Page Count: 10
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Looking Beyond Numbers: The Effects of Gender Status, Job Prestige, and Occupational Gender-Typing on Tokenism Processes
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Abstract

Researchers of women workers in gender-skewed work groups repeatedly report evidence of visibility, contrast, and role encapsulation. The purpose of the present study was to explore the potential impact of four causal factors frequently confounded in these studies: proportional underrepresentation (tokenism), gender status, job prestige, and occupational gender-inappropriateness. Study participants' expectations for targets suggested that token numbers alone were not sufficient to produce tokenism; subordinated gender status also contributed regardless of the gender-appropriateness or prestige of the occupation. A theory of tokenism based solely on numbers thus is limited by its failure to acknowledge the impact of organizational and societal gender-based discrimination.

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