The present study tested right-wing authoritarianism and sexual prejudice as potential mediators of the relationship between traditional male role norms and antigay aggression based on gender role enforcement theory. Data were collected from 152 heterosexual undergraduate men. Study hypotheses were generally confirmed: authoritarianism significantly mediated the relationships between (a) dimensions of masculinity and sexual prejudice, and (b) dimensions of masculinity and antigay aggression. However, sexual prejudice did not mediate the relationship between masculinity and aggression. An exploratory model tested for a moderating effect of authoritarianism and indicated that sexual prejudice predicts antigay aggression only for men low in right-wing authoritarianism. This implies that right-wing authoritarian men aggress toward gay men because of their authoritarianism, and not their sexual prejudice. These cross-sectional findings need to be confirmed by longitudinal research, but the results have implications for interventions aimed at eliminating antigay aggression and indicate that right-wing authoritarianism and its antecedents may be more important than previous research suggests.
- Sexual prejudice