SOCB22H3 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Essentialism, Social Constructionism, Nuclear Family

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12 Nov 2011
A. Short Answers (3 x 5)
1. What was the major critique of the second wave of feminism? Name a theoretical
perspective that is associated with this critique.
- the second wave of feminism argued about what oppressing the women, how women were
excluded from the public and society. the major critique was that they theorised about women as
if they came from the same playing field as men. And even within the women, they failed to see
the individual differences among women such as race and personal characteristics. For example,
it is often regarded that women are the caregivers because they naturally have nurturing qualities,
however some women arent nurturing at all. And for black women, it was normal for them to
work outside the home, which makes them different from the assumed roles of women. They
treated women as universal and didnt accoungt for differences.
2. What are the dangers of a single story? Illustrate with an example that is not contained in
Chimamanda Adichie’s talk.
- who tells the stories? which stories are repeated? gender, race, class?
- in many cultures women have less power, so those from the lower classes never have
the chance to tell thier stories
- thinking people as one thing, a represented image that the media portrays
- we fail to realize that each of these people that we categories into a single group are indeividual
- ex) in her book a man appeared to be an abuser, and a student went up to her and said "its a
shame that men in nigeria are violent"...she said to the student "i recently read a book called
american phychos....its a shame that young american men are serial killers"
- we are seeing one characteristic and applying to all
- single story creates steotypes; these views are incompete
- it robs people of divnity, it makes recognition of equal humanity difficult, emphasizes how we
are different rather than how we are similar
- we need a balance in stories
3. Contrast an essentialist and a social constructionist view of gender. Provide a definition
for each and illustrate with example.
- essentialist = gender by biology; social constructionalist = gender differences due to social and
cultural meaning that are mapped onto bodies
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