No Boys Allowed: The Impact of Honor Concerns on HPV Stigma and HPV Vaccination Decisions for Men in the United States

Stephen Foster, Jarrod Bock, Mauricio Carvallo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Due to the initial focus on women as targets for the HPV vaccination program in the U.S., many U.S. men now report that the HPV vaccine is somehow “feminine,” posing a potential threat to men’s masculine reputation. This threat was expected to be particularly strong for men from honor cultures, which place a strong emphasis on men’s avoidance of “feminine” behaviors. We hypothesized that endorsement of honor norms and values would be linked with less support for men’s HPV vaccination, lower HPV vaccination rates, and less support for the authorization of the HPV vaccination for sons. Using a cross-sectional analysis of both individual-level data collected from U.S. participants (total N = 367) and regional U.S. data, we found a link between individual-level honor endorsement and decreased support for male HPV vaccinations (Study 1) and lower levels of male HPV vaccination in an honor-endorsing region (Study 2). Finally, we found that the link between honor endorsement and decreased support for vaccinating sons in a sample of non-parents/parents of daughters, as well as the link between honor endorsement and son’s HPV vaccination status, were both explained by HPV vaccination stigma (Study 3). Findings suggest that honor endorsement may play a significant role in keeping men from seeking the HPV vaccination and authorizing the HPV vaccination for their sons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)475-491
Number of pages17
JournalSex Roles
Issue number9-10
StatePublished - Nov 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Gender Studies
  • Social Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

Cite this