PSYC 5 Lecture Notes - Lecture 11: Parental Investment, Orgasm, Evolutionary Psychology
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Psychological Aspects of Human Sexuality
Perspectives on gender differences continued
● Gender differences
- Many differences we observe between men and women are deceptive distinctions, not
- Language and communication patterns
o Men and women use language differently in different situations.
o Sacrer pour une femme n’est pas autant socialement acceptable que si un homme
- Money matters, workplace, family
o Experience versus gender
o A woman who would like to be a stay at home mom would still be difficult
because nowadays they also need a job in order to pay for their belongings.
- The reality is that differences are not as great as they once thought. For example, the
advancement within the workplace.
● Mean differences
- Few differences between men and women are ‘hard-wired’.
- Gender differences are mean differences: differences in the average scores of men and
women on standardized tests.
- Differences among women and among men are far greater than mean differences
between women and men.
- Difference and domination
- Social institutions are gendered institutions.
- We become gendered selves in a gendered society: social institutions reproduce and
reinforce dominant definitions of gender and ‘discipline’ those who deviate from these
- People will define your gender for you if you don’t do it yourself
- Political and personal dilemmas: must women become ‘like men’ and sacrifice their
femininity to succeed in the arenas that are established to reproduce masculinity?
o We are unable to change because those who want to change the way things are,
are also part of the problem.
- Major challenge and solution
- Negative influence of ‘interplanetary’ theory on proponents of biological determinism
and differential socialization.
o There are differences between men and women (greater than among men and
o Differences between men and women cannot be avoided and are the source of
domination and inequality.
- Social constructionist approach