Gender Stereotypes: Masculinity And Femininity

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2.2 Theoretical Framework
2.2.1 Gender Stereotypes: Masculinity and Femininity
Brannon (2004), defines gender stereotype as beliefs about the psychological traits and characteristics of, as well as the activities appropriate to, men or women. Gender roles are interpreted by behaviours, but gender stereotypes are about the beliefs, views and attitudes towards masculinity and femininity. Therefore, gender stereotypes are very influential; they impact conceptualizations of women and men and establish social categories for each gender. These categories represent what people think, and even when beliefs vary from reality, the beliefs can be very powerful forces in judgments of self and others.
He further classifies gender stereotype in two categories
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Of the 60 items, 20 represent cultural stereotypes of masculinity (ambitious, independent, competitive), 20 represent femininity (gentle, warm, understanding), and 20 are filler items. Scores on the masculinity and femininity scales yield four different possibilities: masculine, feminine, androgynous, and undifferentiated. People who score high on the masculinity scale and low on the femininity scale would be classified masculine, whereas people who score high on the femininity scale and low on the masculinity scale would be considered feminine. These people not only accept cultural stereotypes of masculinity or femininity, but they also reject the other role. Thus, such individuals fit the stereotypical notions of masculinity or…show more content…
The focal point is on the individual in the social context. It investigates the roles that society has assigned to women and men. Another term discussed in this text is feminism whose definitions are considered to be vast and varied. At the most elemental level, a feminist is someone who is of opinion women and men should be treated equally. Thus it becomes apparent the belief in gender equality is the central feature of feminism, however, activism is also considered as being an important feature of feminism for certain individuals. The text suggests about stereotypes attached to feminists. It as well asserts that feminists seem to be aware of the unattractiveness stereotype and also influenced by it. One study of the author showed that feminist college women were more influenced by a woman with a feminine appearance delivering a profeminist message than a woman with a masculine appearance. The study also suggests that feminism is one sub category of gender stereotyping and that feminist are less hostile towards men. Another stereotype statement is that feminists are perceived to have problems in relationships, of which very few examples are available. Two other feminist stereotypes are that feminists are unattractive and are likely to be

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