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Chapter 7

Introduction to Sociology - Chapter 7

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Sociology 1020
Kim Luton

Introduction to Sociology Chapter 7 07 November 2011 Biological and Social Determinism: - human behaviour is influnced by both culture and biology - nurture implies a possibility of change, while nature is more fixed - an how the weight assigned to one factor or the other varies with the specific behaviour being explained - women could expect to live 81, when men is 76 - since when deaths from preventable causes, such as unsafe sex, poor driving, smoking, and excessive drinking, are factored out, the gap reverses and men have a slight advantage - social variables also affect the gender gap - different sized gaps in different ethnic groups in the same society also suggest social influnences - five and a half year ga does not mean that all women outlive all men - within variation (comparing males to males or females to females) - between variation (comparing males to females) Numeracy and literacy differences: - gender imbalances in post-secondary education are well documented - female students are overrepresent in the humanities and social sciences, while male students are the majority in mathematics, technology and sciences - girls do not take as amny advanced math courses as boys do - even when they do, a faster tate of acceleration for high school boys, despite relative gender equality in elementary school - girls use computers less at school than do boys - although womean ear significantly less money than men, possesssion of math skills lead to significant wage premiums across the groups of workers, and women with superior math abilites enjoy wage premiums equal to or greater than those of men - just as men and women have different body mass, strength, and a preponderance of certain hormones, there are difference in their brain function too - between variation and ignore the greater within varation, a situation compounded when lower expectations in math for women lead to their lessend abilites in self-fulfilling prophecy - Rosenfeld, a feminist scholar, said that all research on gender differences should be context-specific, encourage cross-cultural extensions, look for similarities as well as idfferences, examine variation within as well as between groups, and go beyond gender as a category perse to see it as one of many bases of inequality - when researchers repeatedly find little or no inequality, the should accept this, she said - despite not finding inequality it still must exist begins to turn research into ideology Sex and Gender: Some Definitions: - a person's sex is a biological trait characterized by the XX chromosomes and estrogen for a female, and the XY chromosomes and testosterone for a male - gender is a social struct bases in part on definition of masculity and femininity and consisting largely of the norms and expectations that encourage people to behave in a "sex appropriate" manner - gender can be likened to achieved statuses to highlight this greater flexibility - how much of it is sex and how much of it is gender? - gender idenity is the preception, developed probably by age 3, of oneself as male or female - gendered order is a marco-level concept and refers not to individuals but to social structure - it includes gendered norms, gendered roles, and a gendered ideology, which together make social life gendered, directing how mlaes and females should act - its biggest influence is to creat gendered division of labour in which males and females, in both the unpaid and the paid labour arenas, tend to act "gender appropriately" - men take on more demanding jobs and less housework, and women do the opposite Major Theoretical Perspectives on Gender: Structural Functionalism: - the manin functionalist position, is that social practices presist because they benefit society in some way - gender is just another of the social conventions, such as family and how, that maintain order and promote social stability - breadwinners have acces to the public realm of paid labour and perform the instrumental tasks needed for surivial - they must be strong, even aggressive and smart - rationality is preferred over emotionality - women are relegated to the priavte realsm of the home, providing unpaid domestic labour and being responsible for expressive tasks, such as nurturing and providing emotional support - when both husband and wide work in the paid labour market, his job is the more important one, they move if his job requires it, and it is usually her responsiblity to miss work to care for sick children - functionalists assume that a family needs both a mother and a father and that heterosexual unions are te only type of union possible - they overlook the fact that many parents, expecially women, work a double shift as paid employees and unpaid homemakers - each binary duality should be thought of as a continuum: most men do some housework and some women do none, even though neither realm is equally shared The Symbolic Internactionist Perspective: - symbolic interactionists see the world as socially constructed and changeable - defintion of masculinity and femininity, gender roles, and gender norms are all negotiable - even gender identity is not fixed and immutable as can be seen in the cases of transsexual and other exceptions to a male/female duality - men may be more sensitve and openly aftectionate than they were in previous generations, limits still remain - Brown and Gilligan argued that children learn gendered behaviours through a variety of processes, such, as imitating others and receiving rewards or punishments for behaviour defined as gender-appropriate or inappropriate - gender product of social and cultural, rather than biological, influnces - parents and siblings and then peers, schools, religions, the mass media, and the workplace all play roles in continuing the gendered order - most behavioru is affect by what is defined as gender-appropriate - the norms are sometiumes loudly proclamined and sometimes less so - any doubts will be clearned up when terms such as gay, fag, sissy, tomboy, abd dyke are publily and loudly expresses A Marxist confli
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