Lecture 6: The Global Factory (11th February)
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The Global Factory
Sex vs Gender – Biological vs cultural and social underpinning
•What it means to be a man/woman is different in one culture compared to another
•Household as a site of politics, of gender upbringing, of powerful ideological discourses.
oThe world we live in is mostly based on patriarchy.
oEx: companies consist mainly of men. They may have their own gender bias? Who gets the
promotion? Who is employable? Who isn’t?
oThis leads to women being, in a sense, forced to be in certain domains.
oEx: Women as caregivers, they belong in the household.
oEx: Women belonging in the ‘private sphere’.
oEx: Women as irrational, as docile, thinking with their hearts.
•Concrete ideas and practices social distinctions and hierarchies are interpreted and eroticized.
•Idea of gender as being constructed over time, it becomes naturalized eroticized
oYou expect or assume that women are such and such.
oEx: black male as being over-sexualized.
•Different ranks of sex workers (outsiders, locals)
•Globalization promotes human rights, gender rights through social movements/gender movements.
Unfortunately, women are still subject to inequalities.
•Free trade zones/SAPS/ idea of privatization
oExport-oriented manufacturing industries.
oCheap labor is used to manufacture goods.
oOwned by multi-national corporations
oEmploy exclusively WOMEN.
Factory work women is said to have nimble fingers and have better dexterity.
•Changes in gender norms/stereotypes will eventually come, slowly but surely.
oWhat is acceptable and what is not?
oImportant Economic circumstances, politics/laws.
oHard to get ‘out’ of.
oFeminization of labor
oEx: Ex-patriot of a predominantly-white country moving into a third-world country
Foreigners as ‘gods’ <-> feminization of local men
Heteronormative masculinity – What masculine men believe themselves to be, what they possess.
•They naturalize masculinity.
•Globalization is not without patriarchy mobilization of male power.
•Globalization is creating employment for women outside the home – where they can sell their labour within
circuits of global capitalism.
o‘everybody is free’ – hard to perceive. It is another form of stereotype.
•So are women really the winners in these new global relationships?
oWe take on different roles (ex: as students, wives, husbands, brothers, sisters, etc…)
oGender roles and expectancies as a two-way process.
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