Date Approved


Date Posted


Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department or School


Committee Member

Nina Nabors, PhD, Chair

Committee Member

Flora Hoodin, PhD

Committee Member

Kate Mehuron, PhD


This study examined the influence of feminist identity on social tolerance of mental illness, specifically, the extent to which people with gender deviant mental illnesses (i.e. men with depression, women with antisocial personality disorder) are socially tolerated. Male and female subjects (N=260) were given the Feminist Perspectives Scale and six character vignettes describing a person with a mental illness followed by a series of questions. Subjects received a score on six subscales of the FPS (conservative, liberal feminism, radical feminism, cultural feminism, socialist feminism, and woman of color feminism), which were compared to their social tolerance scores. Results suggested that conservative subjects were significantly less tolerant overall of all characters than were feminists. Age, race, and gender had significant effects on social tolerance. Implications of these results are discussed.