Reading Lec 10 - Gender Inequality

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16 Feb 2011
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Sociology January 13th, 2011.
Gender Inequality
New Society – Ch. 7
Fact that gender is largely learned and that its content is continually altered
through social interact had three implications:
1.Gender identities and behaviours are not stable and fixed. What people take to be
masculine/feminine varies b/w societies, and w/in any given society, over time
2.Gender identities—internalized sense of being man/woman—and gender specific
behaviours need not be congruent w/ the sex assigned to individuals at birth
3.Just like sexuality and sex, gender identities and behaviours are not polar
opposites; there are degrees of masculinity and femininity
Three Dimensions of Inequality: Power; Material well-being – involves access to
economic resources necessary to pay for food, clothing, housing, and other possessions
and advantages. 2 important sources of material well being: work related earnings and
accumulated wealth; and Prestige
Social scarificationclassification of persons into groups based on shared socio-
economic conditions leads to gender inequality
Feminist Theories
Marxism derived from Karl Marx
Capitalists benefit because they obtain refreshed workers at the beginning of each
day and mothers raise children who will become future labourers
Capitalists also benefit from womens unpaid work because women in paid labour
force, help capitalists earn profit because they act as a “reserve army of labour
that can be hired and fired as labour demands change
Gender equality is possible once socialism replaces capitalism
Socialist feminism builds on Marxist feminism
Agree that gender inequality is cause by the gendered division of labour and its
exploitation by capitalism
Argue that classes constitute only one set of social relations that oppress women
2nd set of social relations is patriarchy – the system of male domination over
women
Patriarchy predates capitalism
Glass ceiling effect – women face invisible barriers that prevent them from
penetrating the highest levels of organizations where power is concentrated and
exercised
Impersonal discrimination “statistical discrimination – process whereby
employers make decisions about whether to hire and how much to pay any given
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Document Summary

7: fact that gender is largely learned and that its content is continually altered through social interact had three implications, gender identities and behaviours are not stable and fixed. Three dimensions of inequality: power; material well-being involves access to economic resources necessary to pay for food, clothing, housing, and other possessions and advantages. 2 important sources of material well being: work related earnings and accumulated wealth; and prestige: social scarification classification of persons into groups based on shared socio- economic conditions leads to gender inequality. Impersonal discrimination statistical discrimination process whereby employers make decisions about whether to hire and how much to pay any given www. notesolution. com. January 13th, 2011. women on the basis of the employers" perceptions of the average characteristics of all women: women"s movement social movement that takes action to improve the status of women feminism important part of women"s movement.

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