Date of Award

1-12-2006

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Sociology

First Advisor

Denise Donnelly - Chair

Second Advisor

Dawn Baunach

Third Advisor

Elisabeth Sheff

Abstract

This thesis focuses on perceptions of butch privilege in the undergraduate student body at Georgia State University. Butch privilege is similar to traditional definitions of privilege, whether male, white or heterosexual. I define it as the unearned and unacknowledged privilege experienced by a butch lesbian (perceived or self-identified) due to her occupation of masculinity. In order to investigate this topic, an exploratory quantitative analysis of how perceptions of masculinity and status are associated with butch privilege was conducted. A survey consisting of questions regarding participants’ perceptions of how differential privileges are extended to masculine and feminine looking women were presented to undergraduate students during introductory sociology classes. I found that the privileges traditionally reserved for white males in society are perceived to be extended to white butch lesbians due to their occupation of masculinity.

Included in

Sociology Commons

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