Date of Defense

Spring 4-1975

Department

Sociology

Abstract

Recent research in the area of sex-role socialization indicates that at age three most children have developed clearly sex-typed preferences and that they have acquired fairly clear conceptions of sex roles by age five. Children may indicate their developing concepts in a number of ways: in their toy preference, activity choices, drawings, play, and storytelling. Adult sex-role behavior is influenced by the child's early learning experiences with sex roles. The present study is concerned with children's ideas about sex roles as revealed in their original fantasy stories. For any individual, fantasy is an adaptive tool; a cognitive means of coping with reality, operationalizing new concepts, and trying new combinations of them. For children, fantasy takes on special importance and is an indicators of both emotional and intellectual growth, revealing children's conceptualizations of and feelings about their concrete experience. The purpose of this study is to investigate how the development of children's conceptions of sex roles is reflected in their own original fantasies.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Campus Only

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