Thesis

"Clock that gay" : exploring gaydar among gay men

Gaydar is thought to be an ability of gay men to identify other gay men. Interestingly, a majority of gaydar research has focused on examining gaydar among straight individuals while limited research examines gaydar among gay-identified people. Given this gap in the literature, this study aimed to investigate gay men's ability to identify the faces of other gay men. Our sample consisted of 114 gay/queer-identified male participants recruited from TurkPrime. Participants categorized the sexual orientation of 42 photographic stimuli of both gay and straight-identified men. Results indicated that this sample of gay men was unable to correctly classify the gay male targets at above chance levels. Follow-up, exploratory correlational analyses indicated that social outness/chronological age and confidence in categorizations were related to gaydar accuracy, in unexpected and expected ways. Given these findings, gaydar may not exist by simply looking at one's face - even for gay men - and future researchers should consider extending gaydar research to examine dynamic social cues related to sexual orientation.

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