Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Sociology & Anthropology

First Advisor

Dr. Diana H. Scully


Sexism is a widespread social problem that exists throughout the world today. It persists within the dominant culture, as well as in various subcultures, including the punk subculture (Daugherty 2002; Leblanc 1999; McRobbie 1991; Rosenberg and Garofalo 1998). Nijole Benokraitis and Joe Feagin's (1995) theory of sexism posits that subtle sexism is the unequal and harmful treatment of women that is typically less visible than blatant sex discrimination. This particular type of sexism may often go unnoticed, as society has internalized subtle sexist behaviors. Empirical research on subtle sexism has been conducted in various settings, such as the employment, academic, and military sectors of society (Benokraitis 1997). However, this theory has not been adequately applied to subcultural research. This research investigates whether subtle sexism exists within a group of self-identified anarchist punks who contend their primary tenets/principles dictate that they reject all forms of inequality. Moreover, if sexism does exist within the AP subculture, eradication of this problem within this community may be a daunting task -- as sexism may persist in subtle, invisible, and obstinate ways. This exploratory and descriptive research will utilize interviews of fifty men and women to examine if sexism exists, specifically in a subtle manner, and, if so, to illuminate manifestations of sexism within the anarchist punk community. Additionally, this study engages Benokraitis and Feagin's (1995) sexism theory to a non-traditional, subcultural setting.


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Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

June 2008