Date of Completion
school shooters, gender role conflict, gender and school shooters
Field of Study
Doctor of Philosophy
School shootings are becoming familiar events in America. School children live in a world where they fear violence and practice active shooter drills even during kindergarten. With no signs of the violence abating, it is of critical importance for the public to understand why these attacks are occurring.
The purpose of this study is to examine the writings of school shooters for the presence of masculine ideologies and gender role conflict. Using the qualitative directed content analysis methodology, gender role conflict theory, anda feminist theoretical perspective, the writings of seven school shooters were analyzed.
Little research attention has been paid to thesex and gender roles of the shooters. School shooters are almost universally boys exhibiting what can be defined as gendered behavior. This study examined the patterns of gender role conflict in school shooters’ lives. The findings found the presence of masculine ideology and distorted gender role schemas, three of the four outlined patterns of gender role conflict, and gender role devaluations, restrictions, and violations in their writings. The results provided evidence that the shooters in the sample wrote about gender role conflict and the resulting stress it caused in their lives. The limitations of the study and implications are discussed.
Marston, Polly, "The Experience of Gender Role Conflict in School Shooters: A Qualitative Study" (2020). Doctoral Dissertations. 2388.