Throughout history, we have seen the same stereotypes placed on gender, men should be strong and brave. They are the ones that support their families while women are the caregivers and the nurturers and handling the household. According to Emily Kane in “Glamour Babies” and “Little Toughies”, “gender is not a straightforward amplification of underling biological differences between male and females; rather, gender is constructed through social processes and enforced through social mechanisms.” With that being said Kane feels that we should not limit ourselves to those preconceived notions of what men and women can do. According to Kane, we should not believe that men and women could not develop certain mental or psychological attributes merely because of their sex. This mean that we do not have to fall into the trap of preconceived notions, such as; if we are born a girl we will love the color pink and do poorly in mathematics.
How can the word ‘gender’ be defined? The American Psychological Association refers to gender as, “The attitudes, feelings, and behaviors that a given culture associates with a person’s biological sex.” Gender is not to be confused with an individual’s sex, which is predicated solely on biological factors, such as genitalia and sex chromosomes. Gender has become a social construct, and society has absolute control in defining gender roles; stifling creativity and innovation. Gender construction is the distinction between the two sexes and attribution of traits and characteristics through gender roles. The culture within a society defines what is considered masculine or feminine.
Gender roles, such as men being the ones expected to work, go to school, and play sports, and women to be the ones expected to clean the house and take care of the children is an ideology many individuals believe to be true when in reality it is something that is completely made up by humans and does not really exist. Perhaps, in a couple of years, gender roles will be completely extinct and something from the past, and people will start to live in a society where men and woman are allowed to be the person they truly are and can dress, act, work, or play the way they want without needing to conform and fit into the cruel expectations that society has placed on
Social roles involving work, other activities and interactions, responsibilities in production and reproduction, expectation of behaviour, even dress and manner of speech, all become gender-types in the gender roles construction. As with other features of culture, the various aspects of gender are interrelated, woven into the building up of society, affected by all other aspects of human behaviour and interaction. Moreover, this set of interrelated features vary from one society to the next which means gender is culturally based, elaborate, and integrated with all other features of society. Another important point is that socialisation in these gender roles are so pervasive that the situation may indeed be nearly hopeless in terms of any real change from a critical perspective. Even when parents have reached a point of consciousness where they attempt to avoid gender-typed toys, it is often the children themselves who want such
The term gender, as opposed to the concept of sex, refers to the non-physiological aspects of identifying an individual as male or female. The genre is a product of cultural and subjective constructs that constantly change over time, context and environment. So, when it comes to gender differences, there is more talk about differences and explicit or implicit attributes between men and women in a spectrum resulting from socialization. In fact, it is the differences between the sexes that socialization has inculcated, which is attributed to femininity and masculinity. From a summary point of view, if sex is our biology, then everything else is the genre.
What is gender? Gender is the intersection of the relationships between sex, gender identity, sexuality and gender expression; gender is an achieved status Gender is not just sex, gender identity, gender expression and sexuality. These aspects are a basis for gender, but they do not determine gender. Sex is the measurable organs (anatomies), hormones and chromosomes that determines us as male, female or intersex. It is what we are born with, a product of biological processes (DNA, evolution, mutation, replication, reproduction, and selection).
Gender roles are the expectation, defined by society that indicates what appropriate behaviour is for men and women. Because of these roles, some aspects of the life of a person like, early childhood, sexuality and cultural institution can greatly be affected. Assigning gender roles can start as early as the birth of a child. Here lies the known tradition that blue is for boys and pink is for girls. Since when did color even belong to a certain gender?
Sex is a physical classification of men and women by their different natural and biological attributes (chromosomes, sex organs, chromosomes. etc. )(Arber, S and Thomas, 2001:18).In contrast to sex, gender refers to the experience of masculinity and femininity, which relates to the societal norms and roles put in place for men and women. Gender entails the social roles learned by males and females through socialization, linked with culture to understand the different behaviors and social roles expected of men and women, despite biological differences (Vcampus.uom.ac.mu, 2015)(Nobelius, 2004). Owing to the fact that gender is a social construction, ideas of gender change across time and differ within cultures, for example: the ideas of being a man in all cultures and not the same.
The general aim of these works has been to condemn the male attitude towards women. ‘Sex’ according to her is determined biologically and ‘Gender’ is a social construct through stereotyping and conditioning. The two terms quiet often used in Gender Studies have different meanings. Sex defines the maleness and femaleness of a person, a biological difference in genitalia. Gender is the socio-cultural definition of man and woman with roles and behaviour assigned to them by society.