Fraternity men just get all the grief, amirite? One “no means yes, yes means anal” joke and you’re all misogynistic rapists. It’s a tough life. Well boys, you’re in luck. A recent study published in the Journal of College Student Development suggests that fraternity men are, well, less rapey.
The study’s co-author, Charles S. Corprew, specializes in the study of male behavior, specifically in regard to college students. He defines hypermasculinity as “an exaggerated adherence to traditional male gender role beliefs.” Prior research has shown that fraternity men generally exhibit high amounts of hypermasculinity, to which I say, you didn’t need a research lab to figure that out. Ask any pretty girl who’s ever been a freshman and she’ll tell you the same thing. This coupled with disinhibition, also prevalent in fraternity men (again, shocker), is generally a precursor to sexual assault. Corprew and co-author Avery Mitchell predicted, as everyone has, that fraternity men would be more likely to have “hostile attitudes and sexual aggression toward women.”
How wrong they were.
In a sample size of 217 males, students of three southern universities, 81 identified themselves as fraternity men. What Corprew and Mitchell found shocked them. Not only were they unable to disprove their null hypothesis, but the opposite finding was true. Non-Greek males tended to be more hostile and sexually aggressive toward women. It is important to note that this is not because non-Greek men were more hypermasculine, rather, only in geeds was hypermasculinity indicative of these, uhhh, rapey behaviors and attitudes.
Corprew and Mitchell suspect that fraternity-style *cough* “training” is largely a reason that these gentlemen become oh-so gentlemanly. It’s suggested that mandating similar training, campuswide, might be a good idea. That’s right, the authors believe that administrators should force every male on campus to eat a stick of butter sprinkled with dip while they do an elephant walk…to raise awareness. Jay kay, you guys. Fraternity men attend motivational speakers and are made aware of issues through philanthropic events, whether they are there willingly, drunkenly, or otherwise.
“A lot of these organizations are very cognizant of what’s going on on college campuses and the fraternity and the hook-up culture that goes along with that.
Fraternities tend to have at least some level of education about the importance of sexual consent, assault and alcohol abuse.”
They also know there’s a “threat of their chapter and charter being revoked if anything nefarious happens,” but that’s hardly the point. Mandating activities to educate other men on campus could have a huge effect on their behavior.
It’s also suggested that fraternity men might be hypermasculine for different reasons than non-Greek men, who are assumedly just brutish pigs for no reason at all. Being surrounded by other men constantly, naturally perpetuates masculinity. I just envision beta rays of manliness bouncing around the frat house and multiplying for eternity, being easily absorbed by all who enter. But really, it’s because no one wants to be the pussy of the group, so they overcompensate with hypermasculinity instead.
In any case, what I just heard is fraternity men are the most masculine, the least rapey, and that
hazing fraternity-style training (no, but really, guys, I mean training) is good for the soul. Your move, Jezebel.
[via Inside Higher Ed]