Throughout history, people have portrayed men and women differently often requiring of the former masculinity and of the latter femininity. Society often tries to assign specific traits for men and specific traits for women. The value of a women is different than a man’s value. This leaves society with the question, “What does it mean for a man to be masculine and a woman to be feminine?” Are these phrases established to help us identify genders? In society, it is intimated that men have to possess the masculinity gender and women have to possess the femininity gender.
Constructing masculinities Masculinities are the patterns of social practice associated with the position of men in any society’s set of gender relations (Connell, 2005). Masculinity is not genetic trait that men are born with , rather it is acculturated, composed of social norms of behaviour, which they learn to reproduce in culturally appropriate ways (Beynon, 2002). Connell, (2005) defines masculinities as the pattern or configuration of social practices linked to the position of men in the gender order, and socially distinguished from practices linked to the position of women. Configuration of practice in everyday life is substantially a social construction. When concepts of masculinity are addressed by society at a macro level, the
Gender is a socially constructed definition of what women and men are. It is different to the term ‘sex’. Sex refers to the biological characteristics of a woman and a man. What is masculine and feminine, for males and females, can vary depending on their cultural background. This means that the society’s expectations confirm the behavioural, psychological and physical qualities that are related to the particular gender.
We need to start focusing more on masculinities as well as feminisms in order to be fair and find a long term solution to the inequality situation. We need to stop generalising and stereotyping men and focus on the understanding of masculinities as a more complex model and one that not only relates to relations of power between men and women but between men themselves. Just as there are many different feminisms there are also multiple types of masculinities. The dominant from of masculinity in society is hegemony – the idealised notion of the ‘real man’ – the ‘bread-winner’, the ‘provider’, the strong, emotionless ‘power-holder’. This rigid cultural ‘norm’ has multiple pressures associated with it and has many negative effects.
Closely related to the idea of gender is the idea of masculinity and femininity. Masculinities can be defined as innate qualities that differ a male from a female however, it translates into culture in the form of specific roles and performances which men have to perform or it is imposed on them (Cornwall, 2010). In abstract terms, masculinity can be understood as something which boys and men do and on the similar lines femininity can also be understood i.e. what women and girls do, more so what women and girls learn to do (Paechter, 2006 and Wesely, 2012). These roles may assign a higher status to men in the power hierarchy irrespective of the fact whether they feel powerful or not.
Connell’s contributions to the understanding of masculinity in society are numerous; however, a select few ideas are most closely related to the short story.” In order to gain a clear idea of how the concepts relate to the prose, one must first develop an understanding of the core arguments. Connell’s primary argument that “‘Masculinity’ does not exist except in contrast with ‘femininity’” (Connell 252) calls to attention the nature of gender practice. Connell essentially argues that masculinity is a result of a perceived lesser definition of persons that can be distinctly summed up by one word. Feminine. This suggests that a clear distinction exists between men and women, one that supersedes biological differences, allows the for division to creep in between them.
Gender Roles can be defined as roles society expects people to play on account of their sex life. Like all roles, gender roles are made up of sets of expectations, so they can be thought of as sets of expiations, so they can be thought of as sets of expectation that are attached to sex. (pp: 220 John E. Farley & Michael W. Flota). Gender roles are separate patterns of personality traits, mannerisms, interests, attitudes, and behaviors that are regarded as either male or female by one 's culture. Gender roles are also exist with respect to interpersonal behavior (it still common for men to ask women for dates than vice versa).
Masculinity has been classified differently depending upon the approach of the researcher. Joanna Bourke outlines the five ways masculinity can be conceptualized, including biological, whereby masculinity is a product of the biological makeup of men; socialization, where masculinity is a result of the “proper” socialization of men; psychoanalytical, whereby differing masculinities are formed as a result of varying socio-historical and cultural environments; discourse, where masculinity is an outcome of discourses; and feminism, where patriarchy not only restricts men but also reinforces the oppression of women. There are multiple versions of masculinity within any ‘one’ social context. Robert Morrell explains, “Boys and men choose how to behave and this choice is made from a number of available repertoires. Such choices are never entirely free, because the available repertoires differ from context to context and because the resources from which masculinity is constructed are unevenly distributed.” Thus, men in different social positions have different resources available to them for the successful demonstration of their manhood and the successful construction of a masculine identity.
Though there are no significant changes in how woman is portrayed in the movies, but there are some significant changes in respect of gender roles and gender stereotypes. Prior to the discussion, it is important to propose that gender roles and gender stereotypes are usually related to one another. While gender roles related to the behavior done by the men and women, gender stereotypes are “the representative of a society’s collective’s knowledge about masculinity and femininity” (Crespi, p.3). So, gender roles contribute the material for gender stereotypes. Foremost, gender stereotypes are very influential in making the conceptualization of women and men in social categories by gender.
It is male-centered and male-controlled. The mechanism is maneuvered in such a way as to subordinate women to men in all cultural domains: familial, religious, political, economic, social, legal, scientific, artistic and so on. From the time of the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, the Vedic civilization, the Iliad and the Odyssey, the Hebrew Bible and the Greek philosophy through the Middle Ages, to the present, the fair sex tends to be defined by negative traits to the