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Chapter 7-11

SOC275H5 Chapter Notes - Chapter 7-11: Gangsta Rap, Hegemonic Masculinity, Human Male Sexuality

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Hae Yeon Choo

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Chapter 7 Summary
School is the second primary socializing institution in the traditional sociological schema
We enter education as gendered beings, already exposed to gender difference and gender inequality
through families, peers, religions, and media
oThe classroom reproduces these differences and the inequality that often goes with them
Education was traditionally limited by sex and class, and in the modern world, has been limited by race
Until the 19th century, most Canadian children received very little education, and education was conducted
under church auspices
By the late 19th century, formal education had expanded significantly, and primary education became
mandatory in most provinces
Education was conceived of in gendered terms, particularly for boys who were to learn ‘manliness’
In addition to being gendered, education was often segregated by race
By 1900, about 10% of university students were women; not until the 1960s did women’s participation
rates increase dramatically
oBy the 1980s, female students had become the majority
Today Canada’s millions of students are schooled in an officially gender-neutral system
oUnofficial gendering is still a large part of the classroom
oEnvironments and play considered appropriate for one sex by teachers, parents and peers may
not be allowed to the other sex
The classroom also reproduces inequality in terms of the amount and nature of attention that students
receive from teachers
Teachers rely on ‘common-sense’ understandings of masculinity and reinforce stereotypes
Textbooks and children’s storybooks also may reproduce stereotypical views of gender
As students enter the secondary-school classroom, they encounter gender intensification both in their
own thinking and in the environments around them
oFor girls, this often takes form in steeply declining self-esteem
oThe classroom can be a chilly climate for high-school girls, and this is compounded by sexually
hostile environments in many schools
Sexual harassment is a common problem for secondary-school girls
oBoys’ self-esteem declines too, though not as precipitously as girls’
Boys are however much more prone to a number of problems, and demonstrate less
academic success on average
While some argue that this is the result of a feminine education system geared to
girls, a more plausible explanation sees cultural influences as the cause
Boys are the most frequent harassers of boys and girls, but boys can be harassed too
oHomophobia and the aggressive reinforcement of hegemonic masculinity are the hallmarks of
this kind of abuse
In adolescence, many boys disconnect from their true selves in favour of an exaggerated masculinity that
views core human values, and education, as signs of weakness
oThe problem then is not feminization of boys but an exaggerated masculinization that equips
them poorly for the world outside the gendered classroom
Men still outnumber women at the doctoral level and in professional degrees
Women outnumber men in the teaching profession
oThe presence of women in teaching dates to the 19th century expansion of education
oThis has prompted calls for the recruitment of more male teachers
Some have called this a moral panic, as media blame the lack of male teachers for a variety of social ills
oPopular movies reinforce the idea that the saviour-teacher is almost always a male who can save
his students from the worst social problems that today’s youth face
oThe panic over male teachers also reinforces stereotyped notions of masculinity and gender
Teaching salaries are lower than in male-dominated professions
At the post-secondary level, the number of women instructors has increased but still more likely to be
found in certain disciplinary areas and non-permanent positions
oThe ‘mommy track’ accounts for some of this discrepancy
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As girls’ achievements have grown within education, there is increasing concern about a decline in boys’
relative performance
oSingle-sex education has arisen to address these concerns
There are some benefits, particularly social ones, to such education; the research on educational benefits
however, remain inconclusive
A particular concern with the recent explosion of such schools is that most base their curriculum on
stereotypical and unsupported ideas about gender difference
oIn doing so, they may reinforce damaging stereotypes and limit student’s growth
The key to education is not its form but its content
Chapter 9 Summary
The media are now considered a primary institution of socialization
Sociologists used to believe that there were only 3 such institutions; family, school, and church (religion)
The media are mediated communication and their effect has often been seen as uni-directional
We need to treat the media as a deeply gendered but complex institution saturated with depictions of
gender that influence us in complex, powerful ways
Our first thing to note about the gendered media is that there are ‘his’ and ‘hers’
oThough some of the barriers are breaking down, genres still remain gendered
oIt is more likely that ‘she’ will cross over into ‘his’ media than the other way around
Character depictions were once highly stereotypes, but from the 1970s on stereotyping has been
breaking down
The emergence of the ensemble cast in the 1980s provided a means for networks to depict both gender
and ethnic diversity
Sexual diversity had to wait for the late 90s, when the first gay main characters appeared on network
Advertising remains one of the most gender-stereotyped area of television programming, though in this
are too there are signs of change
Print media have also been highly gender-segregated
Women’s magazines are quite different from men’s magazines in their contradictory and multivocal
oMen’s magazines are more monovocal in nature, particularly when they’re the ‘lad’ magazines
that poured onto the market in the 1990s
Gender divisions are breaking down, but that breakdown is coming largely from women’s consumption of
formerly men’s genres
The popular music world is dominated by two genres that can be fairly called ‘his’: rock and rap/hip-hop
Gangsta rap is only one form of rap, but it’s by far the most successful, and is noted for its misogyny
Rock too has had its share of machismo and misogyny; but since the 1970s women have contested
rock’s stereotypical representations of women
Though race undoubtedly and unfairly plays a role in the demonization of rappers and misogynists, many
within the African-American community have become increasingly concerned about the portrayals of
women within the genre
Gaming is one of the fastest growing media in the world, now overtaking more conventional
entertainment media in revenues
Gaming too remain gendered
A majority of gamers are male, and though this is changing, women and girls remain marginalized within
the world of gaming
Women and men also remain attracted to different genres
Within games, gender and ethnic stereotypes are alive and well; women remain a minority of those
depicted, and are often hypersexualized
oMen at the same time are represented as hypermasculine heroes, most of whom are white
Non-white men play restricted and stereotypes roles within most games
On-line games are one of the fastest-growing sectors within gaming, offering a level of complexity and
ongoing engagement console games can’t supply
oAs more of us enter into the fantasy worlds of gaming for hours each week, considering the
gender implications of that fantasy realm seems particularly important
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