Uncovering the Unrealistic Domestic Goddess: A Modified Grounded Theory Approach to Gender Stereotypes in Parenting Blogs

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Date
2018-06-25
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Virginia Tech
Abstract

A modified grounded theory approach was used to analyze 200 parenting blog posts for instances of conforming to or deviating from gender stereotypes. A plethora of research recognizes the negative effects of perpetuating stereotypes on such aspects of life and culture as self-concepts, concepts of others, opportunities, obstacles, and occupations. Social cognitive theory informs how these gender stereotypes can affect parents even through blogs and how parents can then affect their children. Thus, research question one asked: Are there gendered instances in parenting blogs that deviate from or conform to a gender stereotype? and research question two asked: What categories and themes of gendered instances that deviate from or conform to a gender stereotype are present in the blogs? What categories and themes are most prevalent in the blogs? Findings indicated that there were gendered instance in the parenting blogs. Although only 30% of the analyzed blog posts contained gendered instances of deviating from or conforming to stereotypes, 75.6% of those instances were found to conform to a gender stereotype rather than deviate. Moreover, the categories that were present in the blog were as follows: Unrealistic Domestic Goddess, Perceived Gender Conformity of Children, Part-time Domestic Father, Realistic Domestic Mother, Normalizing Feminine Characteristics and Interests in Sons, Full-time Domestic Father, Negative Stereotypes Against Women, and Perceived Gender Nonconformity of Children. The category that was by far the most prevalent was the Unrealistic Domestic Goddess as 75.6% of the gendered instances fell under this category.

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Keywords
social cognitive theory, grounded theory approach, gender stereotypes, parenting blogs
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