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Lecture 3

FEM1100 Lecture 3: the Social Construction of Gender

Women's Studies
Course Code
FEM 1100
Mythili Rajiva

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Monday, September 28, 2015
Lecture 3
the Social Construction of Gender
Raewyn Connell — Understanding Masculinities
-Multiple masculinities
-Hierarchies of masculinities
-Hegemonic masculinity
-Active construction of masculinities
Kane. “No Way My Boys are Going to Be Like That!”
-Parents gender their children from birth
-Children become participants by age 2
-Many heteronormative parents celebrate or encourage daughters to be gender
nonconforming at least until adolescence
-Many heteronormative parents are more cautious & even restrictive about gender
non-conformity in their sons
-More heteronormative parents accept and encourage some gender non-conformity in
sons through activities like cooking or emotions like empathy, but are concerned w/
maintaining gender boundaries around “icons of femininity”
-Icons of femininity: barbie, frills,dresses,nail polish, passive behaviour, excessive
Gloria Steinem
-“We’ve begun to raise our daughters more like sons… but few have the courage to
raise our sons more like our daughters.”
Kane Con’td
-Mothers are often more accepting than heterosexual fathers of gender non-
conformity in boys
-Connection between gender performance and sexual orientation
-Heteronormative parents aren’t afraid gender non-conforming behaviour in daughters
will lead to homosexual identity, they are afraid it will for boys
-Gender fluidity is acceptable for boys at the pre-school age
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