The present research used an intersectional analysis in examining whether women and men who have, versus do not have, cross-category friendships differ in what they value as important in a close friendship. Parallel analyses were conducted to examine cross-orientation and cross-race friendships across gender and identity status (minority and majority), with age as a covariate for all analyses. Participants were 1415 adult women and men, ranging in age from 18-80, residing in the United States, who completed a friendship profile questionnaire by reporting basic demographic information about themselves and their close friends. Participants’ importance ratings of six different friendship values were utilized to interrogate existing friendship patterns. Three general friendship values (trust and honesty, respect friend as person, there when needed) and three cross-identity salient friendship values (similar lives & experiences, similar values, nonjudgmental) were considered. Individuals with and without cross-category friendships did not significantly differ in their ratings for any of the three general friendship values. Individuals with cross-orientation and cross-race friendships placed less importance on similar lives & experiences than those with no such friendships. Other cross-identity salient friendship values were uniquely related to cross-orientation and cross-race friendship patterns. Although women rated all six friendship values as more important than did men, women and men displayed similar friendship value patterns across cross-category friendships and identity. These findings are discussed in the context of feminist intersectional theory.
Sex Roles – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 20, 2012
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