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Penis Size Importance

The Association of Genital Appearance Satisfaction, Penis Size Importance, and Penis-Centric Masculinity to Chronically Discriminatory Ideologies among Heterosexual Men - Flora Oswald, Devinder Khera, & Cory L. Pedersen


The penis is often conflated with masculinity, yet a paucity of literature exists investigating men’s experiences of their penis and their masculinity in tandem. The small body of research bridging these topics generally focuses on clinical populations and is unable to speak to men’s experiences beyond these populations. This study assessed, in a nonclinical sample, heterosexual men’s genital satisfaction, penis size importance, and endorsement of penis-centric masculinity. Participants (= 735; Mage = 34.98, SDage = 14.92) took part in a geographically diverse online survey. Results showed partial support for our theorization, with men’s penis size importance and penis-centric masculinity endorsement predicting chronically discriminatory attitudes (i.e., sexism) and sexually narcissistic ideologies. Penis-centric masculinity predicted desired validating reactions to their penis, including excitement, awe, shock, and fear. We theorize that discriminatory and narcissistic attitudes, and the desire for validating responses to the penis, represent compensatory strategies to reaffirm and establish masculinity status. We situate these findings within broader theorizing of masculinity and sexist ideologies and maintain the public significance of this research as a potential intervention point; targeting these beliefs in young men may provide an opportunity to mitigate the future development of compensatory prejudiced ideologies.  on body size.

Article published in the journal, Psychology of Men & Masculinities,

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