At Least She Is Doing Something? Women Do Not Prefer a Woman Who Confronts Gender-Based Discrimination With a Distancing Motive Over a Nonconfronter. By: Munder, Anja K; Becker, Julia C; Ruiz, Nadja Salvatierra and Christ, Oliver. 2024. Psychology of Women Quarterly. Vol. 48 Issue 2, p232-251.

We examined how female (and male) observers evaluated a woman who confronts gender-based discrimination expressing a distancing motive (distance oneself from other women) compared to different types of nondistancing motives. We were interested in the distancing motive, because it has ambivalent implications for women (opposition to discrimination and potential for prejudice reduction vs. disparaging women). In three preregistered online vignette experiments (N 1 = 404 women and men; N 2 = 295 women, N 3 = 742 women and men; with men as control groups), participants evaluated a female professional who confronted gender-based discrimination, implying either an individual motive (improve individual situation), a group motive (improve women’s group status), or a distancing motive, all compared to a condition where the woman did not confront at all. Although women perceived distancing-motivated confrontation as more effective and beneficial for women than no confrontation, they evaluated the distancing-motivated confronter equally negatively as the nonconfronter. Furthermore, effects of gender group (Studies 1 and 2) and feminist identification (Studies 2 and 3) and comparing women’s to men’s evaluations (Studies 1 and 3) overall indicate that the confrontation motives’ implications (e.g., devaluation of women) for people’s identities (e.g., feminist women vs. feminist men) shape the evaluation of a confronter. These results encourage those who have contact with targets of gender-based discrimination to reflect on how their own identity may influence their reaction toward the target.