chapter 11 sexuality Lec cont'd.docx
chapter 11 sexuality Lec cont'd.docx

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Malcolm Mac Kinnon

Level of inequality, rate of male violence against women, criteria used for mate selection and other gender differences that appear universal to essentials have variance in them themselves Variation deflates the idea that there are essential and universal behavioural differences between men and women Examples 1) Societies with low gender inequality, tendency decreases for women to stress good provider role in selecting male partners and tendency for men to stress womens domestic skills 2) Women take on jobs such as lawyers and police officers which involve competition and threat stimulation of the hormone testosterone causing them to act more aggressively, aggressiveness is partly role related 3) Women in north America are developing traits that are traditionally considered masculine Women have become more assertive, competitive, independent and analytical recently Gender differences are not constants and are not inherent in men and women, they vary within social conditions Essentialism tends to generalize from the average ignoring variations within gender groups Men are more verbally and physically aggressive than women are on average Essentialists make it seem as if all men are inherently more aggressive than women -scores vary widely within gender groups when rated on aggressiveness Thus many women are more aggressive than the average man and many men are less aggressive than the average woman Little or no evidence directly supports the essentialists major claims Sociobiologists and evolutionary psychologists have not identified any of the genes that they claim cause male jealousy, female nurturance, unequal division of labour between men and women Freudians have not found evidence showing that boys are more independen than girls are because of their emotional reactions to the discovery of their sex organs Essentialists explanatiosns for gender differences ignore the role of power Essentialists assume that existing behavior patterns help to ensure survival of species and the smooth functioning of society Conflictt and feminist: esentialits ignore the fact that men are in a position of greater power and authority than women are Engels conflict theorist Men gained substantial power over women when preliterate societies were first able to produce more than the amount needed for their own subsistence Some men gained control over economic surplus 2 means to make sure offspring would inherit surplus Imposed rule that only men could own property By means of socialization and force they ensured women remained sexually faithful to their husbands Industrial capitalism made men still wealthier and more powerful white it relegated women to subordinate, domestic roles Feminist: gender inequality is greater in agrarian than in industrial capitalist societies Male domination is evident in socialist or communist societies Male domination is rooted less in industrial capitalism than in patriarchal authority relations,m family structures and patterns of socialization and culture that exist in most societies Conflict and feminist theorists concur that behavioural differences between women and men result less from any essential differences between them than from men being in a position to impose their interests over the interests of women functionalism, sociobiology and evolutionary psychology can themselves be seen as examples of the exercise of male power rationalizations for male domination and sexual aggression Social constructionism and symbolic interactionism View that apparently natural or innate features of life such as gender are sustained by social processes that vary historically and culturally -conflict theory, feminist and symbolic interationism can be viewed as social constructionism What it means to be a man or a woman Gender socialization -how boys and girls learn masculine and feminine roles in the family and at school Barbie trademark is worth $1billion U.S Thought that mothers would not buy barbies with breasts for their girls Lived dreams with Barbie as a role player Barbie stimulates body image concerns among girls, the probability of attaining her body is 1 in 100 000 while kens is 1 in 50 more realistic Identified as a symbol of stereotypical female beauty Weight scale says shes 110 pounds, closet is filled with outfits physical perfection is geared to benefit of ken her boyfriend When girls play with Barbie they want to be slim, shapely and implicitly pleasing to men Torys r us boys world and girls world Boys: action figures, sports collectibles, remote controlled cars, tonka trucks, boys role playing games, and walkie talkies, gi joe Girls: babie dolls, baby dolls, collectible horses, lay kitchens, house keeping toys, girls dress up, jewellery, cosmetics and bath and body products Infants are treated differently by parents and by fathers in particular Girls identified as delicate, weak, beautiful and cute Boys: strong, alert and well coordinated Gender stereotyped perceptions of newborns have declines, especially among fathers, but have not disappeared entirely Experimental baby, said child was boy defined startle response as anger Said child was girl defined startle response as fear Parents, fathers encourage their sonds to engage in boisterous and competitive play and discourage their daughters from doing likewise Parents encourage girls to engage in cooperative, role-playing games Different play patterns lead to heightened development of verbal and emotional skills among girls and more concern with winning and establishment of hierarchy wmong boys Boys are more likely than girls are to be praised for assertiveness and girls are more likely to be rewarded for compliance Given this early socialization, seems perfectly natural that boys toys stress aggression, competition, spatial manipulation and outdoor activities, white girls toys stress nurturing, physical attractiveness and indoor activities What seems natural is continuously socially reinforced Presented with a choice between playing with a dish set or tool set, boys are equally likely to pick either, unless dish set is presented as girls toy and they think their fathers would view them playing with it as bad Parents teachers and other authority impose their ideas of appropriate gender behavior on children, but shildren creatively interpret, negotiate , resist and self impose these ideals all the time Gender is something that is done not just given Gender segregation and interaction Barrie thorne Teacher asks children to choose their own desks o With the exception of one girl, they always segregated themselves based on gender o Teacher drew on self segregation by pitting boys against girls in spelling and math contests o Contests were marked by cross gender antagonism and expression of within-gender solidarity o When children played chasing games in schoolyard, groups spontaneously crystallized along gender lines o Chase and kiss had sexual meanings o Provocation, physical contact and avoidance were all sexcually charged parts of the game o Boys and girls did play with each other and some boys played stereotypically girls games and some girls played stereotypically boys games (boundary crossing) o If girls showed skills in sports, boys accepted them as participants o Activities requiring cooperation such as tv station projects, no one paid attention to gender and they interacted without strain o Mixed gender encounters in the classroom and physical education periods (adults legitimized cross gender
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