SOCB22H3 Lecture Notes - Class Discrimination, Marxist Feminism, Ann Oakley

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1 Feb 2013
School
Department
Course
Gender in Sociological Theory
Functionalist Theoy
o See people in terms of roles that meet the needs of
society.
o For Hunter-Gatherers, women stayed near the camp
and take care of the children while men went out
hunting. Seemingly natural nature of society.
Patriarchal
o Modern:
Men/fathers have an instrumental role. Connect
family to the outside world.
Women: Expressive role. Keeps the family
together.
o Looks at gender roles as functional and necessary.
Doesn’t look at inequalities or when the roles are not
working (violence, etc.). Sees it as only within the
family.
Symbolic Interactionist Theory
o How gender is created in face-to-face interactions, and
how they can change from these interactions.
o Doesn’t put enough emphasis on macro interactions, so
it’s only looking at little things rather than the big
picture. Doesn’t account for how there can be external
factors
Conflict/Marxist Theory
o Class struggles define our capitalist society, and drives
what is happening today.
o See families divided in two (men and women), which is
a product of capitalism creating competition within the
family.
o Less privileged do lowest paying jobs, so this is why
women are found more in this type of work because
they don’t have as much power as men.
o Didn’t really look at gender, but it provides tools for
thinking about gender hierarchy. Doesn’t account for
external inequalities (like race).
Socialization Theory
o We learn gender roles in our families and other
institutions.
Example: Schools, sports, etc.
Key Questions for Gender Studies and Feminist Theory:
What causes and maintains gender hierarchy?
First Wave
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Document Summary

Functionalist theoy: see people in terms of roles that meet the needs of society, for hunter-gatherers, women stayed near the camp and take care of the children while men went out hunting. Keeps the family together: looks at gender roles as functional and necessary. Doesn"t look at inequalities or when the roles are not working (violence, etc. ). Symbolic interactionist theory: how gender is created in face-to-face interactions, and how they can change from these interactions, doesn"t put enough emphasis on macro interactions, so it"s only looking at little things rather than the big picture. Doesn"t account for how there can be external factors. Socialization theory: we learn gender roles in our families and other institutions. Key questions for gender studies and feminist theory: Late 19th-early 20th century, fight for the right for women to vote. Not considered human, so didn"t have access to full citizenship. Educated women who were relegated into their home after marriage.

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