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Test 2 Notes.odt

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Robert Brym

Chapter 4 – Gender and Sexuality - Glossary Compulsory heterosexuality – the assumption that individuals should desire only members of the “opposite sex” Essentialists – observe male-female differences in sexual scripts, the division of labour at home and in the workplace, mate selection, sexual aggression, jealousy, promiscuity, fidelity, and so forth. They then interpret these differences as natural and universal – naturally from biological differences between the sexes Gender – encompasses the feelings, attitudes, and behaviours that are associated with being male or female as conventionally understood Gender identity – comprise the repertoire of behaviours that match widely shared expectations about how males and females are supposed to act – a sense of biological, psychological and social belonging to a particular sex Gender role – to act in accordance with expectations about how members of their gender are supposed to behave Hostile environment sexual harassment – involves sexual jokes, comments and touching that interfere with work or create an unfriendly work setting Quid pro quo sexual harassment – involves sexual threats or bribery used to extract sexual favours as a condition of employment decisions Sex – refers to being born with distinct male or female genitalia and a genetic program that releases either male or female hormones to stimulate the development of one’s reproductive system Sexual orientation – refers to the way a person derives sexual pleasure, including whether desirable partners are of the same or different sex Sexual pluralism – assesses sexual acts only by their meaning for the participants Sexual scripts – are assumptions that guide sexual behaviour by telling us whom we should find attractive, when and where it is appropriate to be aroused, what is sexually permissible, and so on. Sexuality – involves actions that are intended to produce erotic arousal and genital response Social constructionism – is the main alternative to essentialism. Social constructionists argue that gender differences are not the product of biological properties, whether chromosomal, gonadal, or hormonal. Instead, gender and sexuality are products of social structure and culture. – Gender roles and scripts emerge in response to the different social positions women and men occupy Socio-biology – is the best known variant of essentialism. It holds that all human beings instinctually want to ensure that their genes get passed on to future generations. However, the different reproductive status of men and women mean that they have to develop different adaptive strategies. This gave rise to “masculine” and “feminine” patterns of behaviour that presumably became genetically encoded because of their adaptive value Transgendered – when their gender identity does not exactly match the sex assigned to them at birth. They blur widely accepted gender roles by, for example, cross-dressing Transsexuals – identify with the opposite sex from the one assigned to them at birth, causing them to change their appearance or resort to a sex-change operation Summary - Three major socio-historical changes have led to the development of gender inequality: long distance warfare and conquest, plough agriculture, and the separation of public and private spheres during early industrialization - Conscious sexual learning begins around adolescence in the context of firmly established gender identities - Receive little formal socialization regarding sexuality but sexual relationships tend to be male-dominated as a result of the character of gender socialization and men’s continuing dominant position in society - Gender and sexual scripts defined the standards of beauty which are nearly impossible for women to achieve – contributes to widespread anxiety about body image – may lead to eating disorders - Gender inequality and a sociocultural context that justifies and eroticizes male sexual aggression contribute to the widespread problem of male sexual aggression - Mass media reflect and reinforce the relationship between heterosexuality and male domination - Social constructionism encourages sexual pluralism, which assesses the validity of sexual activities in terms of the meanings of the acts to the participants Essentialism - Differences in sexual scripts are natural and universal - 3 most popular variants: brain studies, socio-biology and Freudian theory Brain Studies - Difference in brain structure = differences in behaviour and achievement between males and females - Men use the right side of their brain more – better at math, art, music, etc - Bigger connection between hemispheres of the brain in women – edge in language, emotions - Men are better at jobs that require more logic and visual-spatial manipulation – scientists, mechanics, pilots, etc - Women – empathy, intuition and language skills – raise children, teachers, social workers, nurses - the gender division of labour is natural because it is structured by the difference in brains rather than by society Socio-biology - E.O. WILSON - leading exponent in socio-biology - Wilson argues that all human beings instinctually want to ensure that their genes get passed on to future generations – different reproductive status of men and women means they have to overcome different adaptive problems and develop different adaptive strategies – patterns of behaviour we now call “masculine” and “feminine” – people who possessed these characteristics resolved the problem better – the most feminine women and the most masculine men had a better chance at surviving and passing on their genes – therefore, over time, masculine and feminine behaviours became genetically encoded – genetic factors also trigger biochemical processes that further enhance sex differences through varying levels of hormone production in men and women - DAVID BUSS – evolutionary psychologist - Buss argues that four adaptive strategies or “universal features of our evolved selves” govern the relations between the sexes and contribute to the preservation of the human species - 1) men want casual sex with women 2) men treat women’s bodies as men’s property 3) men beat or kill women who incite male sexual jealousy 4) women are greedy for money (sofia, I think we were talking about this the other night, seems people think similarly to you. it is kind of true but I hate the think that people are that shallow) – women must be selective because they only produce a small number of eggs – men have lots of sperm so can be promiscuous but also possessive of partners so that only his offspring are produced – men fight for women, development of aggression – women are greedy cause they look for someone who can support dem babies Freudian - Sexuality is the main human instinct – motivates human behaviour and accounts for the development of distinct gender roles - Age 3-5 – boy becomes preoccupied with penis – unconscious fantasy to sexually possess his mother – resents baby-daddy cause baby-daddy has sexual possession of mother – boy has seen other females naked and fears that his father will castrate him for wanting his mother (Oedipus complex) – boy represses feelings in the unconscious part of personality – repression of feelings allows boy to begin identifying with his father – leads to the development of a strong masculine personality - Young girl begins to develop a feminine personality when she realizes she lacks a penis – sees a penis – recognizes as superior counterpart of their own small and inconspicuous organ(um sorry that’s fucking bullshit, vagines are where its at) – develop envy for penis – seen it and knows that she is without it and wants to have it (freud was fucked in the head) -“penis envy” – girl develops sense of inferiority – angry at mother for cutting off the penis that she once must have had (WHAT THE FUCK FREUD?!) – rejects mother and develops unconscious sexual desire for her father – eventually realizing she aint never gon have a dick, the girl begins to identify with her mother and therefore in some fucked up way, acquiring her father’s penis – women never resolve their penis envy so they are somehow immature and completely dependent on men cause of vaginally induced orgasm (Electra complex) - Gender differences in personality and behaviour follow from the anatomical sex differences that children first observe around the age of 3 Critique of Essentialism 1. Essentialists ignore the historical and cultural variability of gender and sexuality – societies and cultures change rapidly with no apparent genetic change 2. Essentialists ignore the fact that gender differences are declining rapidly and in some cases have already disappeared – the differences in the male and female brain are not making it harder or easier for either gender to do jobs better 3. The research evidence employed by essentialists is often deeply flawed 4. Essentialists tend to generalize from the average, ignoring variations within gender groups 5. Essentialists exaggerate the degree to which gender differences are unchangeable – women stop preferring men with high paying jobs when they have those jobs themselves – equality 6. Essentialists offer explanations for gender differences that ignore the role of power – differences may actually occur BECAUSE of power – not only that the differences give power Social Constructionism - Gender differences are not the product of biological properties - Gender and sexuality are products of social structure and culture - Culture – shared systems of meaning with people’s values and beliefs – male domination is widely accepted in all societies today - Social structure – the way major institutions (families, economy etc) are organized – most today are patriarchal in the way that they reinforce inequalities between women and men - 3 main socio-historical changes that led to the development of gender inequality 1. Long-distance warfare and conquest – women and men used to be equal – women were worshipped cause of fertility – then some idiots came along and decided that men were god who said women should be ruled by men – laws reinforced this – traditional Judaism, Christianity, and Islam embody idea of male dominance - conquest and war was more for men – increased their power 2. Plough agriculture – strong adults in the field all day –private ownership of land – women restricted by giving birth – men would work and own the land – passed father to son 3. The separation of public and private spheres – industrialization – work moved away from the home – women stayed in the home or private sphere while men went into the public one – “natural” division of labour until women entered the public sphere Chapter 5 – The Mass Media – Glossary Alternative news sources – representatives of social movements and of social advocacy groups whose viewpoints often diverge from those of dominant social groups and their representatives Communication – denotes the transmission of knowledge, ideas, meanings and understandings Computer-mediated communication (CMC) – refers to social interaction or information gathering through the use of computer technology Critical perspective – takes the view that the media reinforce dominant ideology and the position of the dominant class and other powerful groups. The theory has two variants. One sees dominance as more open to challenge and resistance than does the other. Cultivation analysis – examines the long-term effects of television viewing on beliefs about social reality. People who watch tv a lot tend to see the world and more violent and dangerous than it really is and tend to be more fearful Cultural imperialism – a situation in which one society’s media exert an overwhelming and unilateral influence over another society’s culture Dominant ideology – comprises the interests, perspectives, viewpoints and understandings of the dominant class and other powerful groups Framing – the process of defining the boundaries of a representation and the organization of its contents. Framing pertains to the section of what is included and excluded, what is accentuated and what is played down Hegemony – the exercise by the dominant class of cultural leadership by using the media to naturalize and universalize dominant ideology and to absorb the challenge of alternative and oppositional points of view Horizontal integration – the ownership of different outlets in a media chain for purposes of sharing resources Interactive media – technology mediated means of communication in which the flow of messages is two way – like a phone Mass media - – technology mediated means of communication in which the flow of messages is largely one way – from a single point of transmission to a large dispersed audience – like tv Multimedia chains – corporations that own and control a string of media operations or outlets in different fields of mass communication – like radio, magazines, tv News values – include criteria such as immediacy, personalization and extraordinariness in terms of which news media define and represent events and issues Official news sources – authoritative voices – politicians, police etc – that the media use to define the meaning of an event or issue Ordinary news sources – sources that do no derive from organizations or groups such as eyewitnesses or victims of news events and issues Representation – the use of language, visual images, or other means of communication to portray something in a coherent and meaningful way that others can understand Space-biased media – print, radio etc – enable communication over extended distances – messages are not long lasting – promote territorial expansion together with secular beliefs and military political forms of power Time-biased media – stone carvings etc – convey durable messages but are relatively immobile Vertical integration – refers to a media corporation’s ownership and control of the means of production at all stages of the production process – from producing newsprint to delivering newspapers Web 2.0 – new media technologies like facebook – that feature user-generated content, information-sharing, collaboration and interactive texts Technological Perspective/Theory - HAROLD INNIS – distinguished time-biased and space-biased media – two different types of media foster different arrangements of institutions and cultural values – time = promoting religious forms of belief – space – assist in territorial expansion, empire building, secular forms of power and culture – create different types of social division and conflict – elite that controls the means of communication try to use it to preserve interest – excluded struggle against the elite and stimulate the development of new forms of communication - MARSHALL MCLUHAN – relationship between communication and institutions + culture was mediated by the way that forms of communication change our sense perceptions and cognitive processes – from oral to print to tv to internet – print removes face-to-face communication – fosters
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