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date: 17 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Sexual and gender minority (SGM) populations frequently experience interpersonal and structural forms of oppression, discrimination, and other bias. This chapter discusses the development and expression of children’s and adolescents’ attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors related to sexual and gender diversity in the United States. The authors first consider social cognitive domain theory as a relevant framework for understanding the range of factors associated with heterosexual and cisgender youths’ attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors toward SGM youth, and discuss the importance of documenting the complex and multidimensional nature of these attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors through a lens of moral reasoning. Second, the authors discuss the development of alliances among heterosexual and cisgender youth, with attention to contact theory and experiences of other types of oppression. Finally, the authors examine SGM youths’ own engagement in activism and behaviors intended to disrupt heteronormativity and cisnormativity as possible extensions of their own social judgments, beliefs, and behaviors.

Keywords: activism, adolescence, allyship, cis-sexism, gender identity, gender expression, heterosexism, sexual orientation, social cognitive domain theory

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