|Title||Sexualized Video Games, Sexist Attitudes and Empathy Toward Victims of Rape: Correlational Evidence for a Relationship Is Minimal in an Online Study|
|Authors||Ferguson, C.J. and Colwell, J.|
Background: Continued debate exists regarding whether sexualization in games can influence sexist attitudes and reduced empathy toward women in real life. At present, evidence has been mixed with little clear consensus among scholars.
Intervention: The present study examined the relationship between sexualized content in video games and players’ sexist attitudes and empathy. This study tests whether such relationships exist once other factors including gender and trait aggression are controlled.
Methods: A correlational design was used with an online sample of 125 participants. Heirarchical multiple regression was employed as well as PROCESS to test for interactions between sexualized game content and trait aggression.
Results: Contrary to popular concerns, exposure to sexualized content in video games was associated with neither decreased empathy nor higher sexist attitudes. Sexualized content in games was associated with slightly lower sexist beliefs and increased empathy for those high in trait aggression. No effects were observed for those low in trait aggression.
Discussion: The current study provides evidence against beliefs sexist attitudes are cultivated by video games. If anything, exposure to sexist games may be associated with greater empathy and reduced sexism among more aggressive individuals.
|Keywords|| Key words: Video games; Sexist Attitudes; Rape Myths; Empathy|
|Journal||Criminal Behaviour and Mental Health|
|Journal citation||30 (1), pp. 16-27|
|Accepted author manuscript|
File Access Level
Open (open metadata and files)
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI)||https://doi.org/10.1002/cbm.2138|
|Published online||23 Jan 2020|