Colonial History, Muslim Presence, and Gender Equity Ideology: A Cross-National Analysis

Publication Abstract

Price AM. 2008. "Colonial History, Muslim Presence, and Gender Equity Ideology: A Cross-National Analysis." International Journal of Sociology 38(1): 81-103.

Gender equity ideology has broad implications, not just for women's status and opportunities, but for the political and social stability of nations as well. The causes of individual differences in gender equity ideology have received significant attention, although many studies have been limited to affluent and industrialized established democracies, rather than developing and nondemocratic nations, where gender ideology is often the least egalitarian. This article uses hierarchical linear modeling to examine indicators of support for gender equality in the public sphere across thirty-six nations, diverse in terms of sociopolitical environment, culture, and historical experiences. The findings show that individuals living in nations with recent colonial history hold less egalitarian gender ideology than those who do not, controlling for level of development, level of democracy, and Muslim presence. Living in a society with a Muslim presence also has a negative effect on individual gender ideology, but this appears to be mitigated by a democratic society.