The English dictionary defines gender as a word that is commonly used to refer to the quality of a human being either masculine or feminine. However, the word gender in modern times is used to refer to the debate on the role of both male and female members of society. In the past years the roles of both men and women were clearly defined with the men being the breadwinners while the women were the care providers for both the children and the men who were their husbands.
Why I want a wife
However, with the structure of society having changed so drastically in the past few years, the clear line that defined the role of both men and women has now been blurred as their roles have overlapped with time. It is no longer sufficient to classify the male gender as the provider for the family or the female gender as the caregiver for the family. The definition of both male and female sexes is no longer clear with members of both sexes performing roles that were initially reserved for the other gender. Men are no longer the sole providers for their families as women have been economically empowered and are now running big companies competing with their male counterparts. Women are also not the sole caregivers for their children as more men are now opting to become stay at home dads so that they can take care of their children.
What are men good for?
The primary role reserved for men as providers was the defining role that has been the guiding principle in society with regard to what society expects of the male population. However, this role has been usurped by women in modern society who now work and also provide for their families. The time for women to stay at home while their men go to work is long past as women hold top positions in many big organizations worldwide. Women have proven themselves as able workers who are able to deliver at the workplace and in many cases have even performed better than men in positions such as customer service representatives and even as secretaries. However, the transformation of women from housewives into corporate leaders has not been without struggle as women have had to fight for their position in society as equals with men. The initial discrimination they faced in past decades as most employers preferred male employees to women has been eroded through a fighting spirit and determination to prove to society that they too can work. In the current society we have many women who have top leadership positions in big corporations, and these companies have succeeded even under female leadership tom prove that women are just as good as men if not better.
In the past it was the role of the women to be the primary caregiver to the children, who also included taking care of their husbands, however, this role, is no longer reserved for women as more men choose to become stay-at-home dads so that they can care for their children. These men who stay home and take care of their children take on a role that has been shunned by men for centuries as it was believed that men did not possess the quality of nurture. It was strongly believed that only women could nurture children, especially during their formative years when they are fully dependent on their care givers. However, many men are now taking over the role of nurturing their children and research indicates that they are excelling at this role. This means that men too can nurture a young child and give it the same care that a woman would give to the same child. Although men may not be able to breastfeed a child, which was the main reason that most of society believed that only women could care for infants, they can provide care in many other ways. It is now evident that men too can nurture a young child as the primary caregiver and that this role is not only reserved for women, which is another changing face of gender.
A third role that was designated for women was that they were supposed to be subservient to men, attending to all the needs of their husbands and supporting them. This role included things such as washing their husband’s clothes, cooking for their husbands, cleaning the house as well as washing the children’s clothes. It was clearly defined that the husband had executive power in the household and that his every wish was to be obeyed without question. However, this power has shifted greatly in recent years as women no longer have the lesser role in relationships, but are considered as equals with men. Most relationships are nowadays extremely consultative where the opinions of both partners carry equal weight and no partner has authority over the other partner. Men are no longer the masters while women are relegated to being their servants, in many situations, men will be found carrying out some of the chores such as cleaning the house or even doing the laundry.
Why is it so hard for men and women?
In conclusion, it is clear that the roles of both the female and the male gender in society are changing significantly as has been demonstrated above. Men are no longer the sole providers as more women are now working and have top leadership positions in major companies, which mean that women are also acting as providers for their families. It is also clear that women are no longer the sole caregivers for their children as more men are choosing to become stay at home dads so that they can take care of their children. It is clear now that the definition of gender has evolved greatly over time.
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A stereotype is any notion that is widely selected about certain types of people or specific ways of behavior that is intended to be representing the entire group of those people or behaviors as a whole. These beliefs or notions may or may not accurately be reflecting reality. However, this is just an underlying rational definition. Within psychology and extending across other areas, there are various theories and conceptualizations of stereotyping that are, providing their own broadened definition. Some of these definitions are sharing commonalities, though each one may also be harboring unique features that may be contradicting others. The word stereotype is deriving from Greek terms (stereos) meaning solid, and (typos) meaning impression, hence solid impression. The word is coming from the print trade and was first embraced in the year 1798 by Firmin Didot in describing a printing trade that was duplicating any typography. The stereotype or the duplicate printing trade is used to print instead of the aboriginal. Aside from printing, the initial reference to stereotype was in the year 1850, as a noun that was meaning image perpetuating without changing. However it was only until 1922 that typecast was initially used in the current psychological sense by an American member of the press known as Walter Lippmann. Stereotypes can be negative or positive, but they are rarely communicating accurate information about other people. This essay thrives to describe gender stereotypes and how stereotyping is imparting the modern society.
Gender Stereotype Variations in Cultures: East and West
As stated by professor Lei Chang, gender outlook within the sphere of domestic roles and work can be determined by using a cross cultural gender role outlook test. Psychological methods of the east have historically been examined by using western instruments that have been explained which potentially is far more reached method than linguistic examination. Some North American models for gender assessment for gender role outlook include: sex role doctrine scale, sex role egalitarian scope, and outlook towards women scope. Through these tests, it is recognized that American southerners are exhibiting few egalitarian gender views than their northern peers, to demonstrate that gender views are automatically affected by a person’s culture, and may be differing among peers whose cultures are few miles apart (Rosina C. et al, 2017). Although prevailing studies have generally been focusing on gender outlook or views that are task related, so far there is no study on particular domestic roles. Supported Hofstede’s 1980 discoveries, that prime masculinity cultures, are related with low percentages of women that hold technical and professional employment, test values for task associated egalitarianism were lower for Chinese comparing for Americans. This is maintained by the number of women that are holding professional jobs in china who are far less than American women; the data is clearly indicating the limitations on chances open to women in modern Eastern society. In opposition, there was no variation between the viewpoint of Americans and Chinese concerning domestic gender roles.
A 1992 research testing labeling and gender stereotypes among young children. The researchers were dividing into two various studies. The first study was investigating how children were identifying the variations between gender labels of girls and boys. The second study was looking at both genders stereotyping and labeling in the relationship of mother and child. Within the initial study, twenty three children between the ages of two and seven experienced a series of gender stereotyping and labeling tests that consisted of showing the children images of females and males or things like hammer or broom then labeling those to a specific gender. The results of these tests were showing that children under the age of three could be making gender stereotypic relationships. The next study was looking at gender stereotyping and labeling in the association between the mother and the child by using three distinct methods. The initial study consisted of identifying stereotyping and labeling, elementary the same way as the initial study. The second consisted of observing behavior, which was looking at ten minute play period with child and mother using gender certain toys. The results these researches was showing the same as the initial study with regarding stereotyping and labeling (Roy et al, 2017). Gender stereotypes are truly common in the society and most of them are shown to be conveying negative impression (Mcleod, 2015). Some basic forms of gender stereotypes are included as follows: personal trait: women for instance are expected to be emotional and accommodative while men are expected to be usually aggressive self centered. The second is domestic behaviors: women for instance are expected to be caring for children, cooking, and cleaning the house while men are expected to be taking care of finance, working on the car, and doing home repairing. The third is occupations: some individuals are quick in assuming that nurses and teachers are for women and that, engineers, doctors and pilots are for men. The fourth is physical appearance: women for instance are expected to be graceful and thin while men are expected to be muscular and tall. Women and men are expected to groom and dress in manners that are stereotypical to one’s gender such as men wearing pants and women wearing makeup and dresses.
How to Fight Gender stereotypes
One probably sees gender stereotypes all around and one might have seen sexism or prejudice based on gender. In order to help everyone, there are ways of challenging these stereotypes regardless of one’s gender identity or gender. The first thing to do is to point it out: the internet, film, TV, and magazines are full of contrary gender stereotypes. Sometimes it is hard for people to notice these stereotypes unless pointing them out by talking to friends and family. The second is living as an example: one should be a role model by respecting people no matter of their gender identity and creating a safe surrounding for people to be expressing themselves and their true standard no matter what society’s expectations and stereotypes are. The third is speaking up: one needs to challenge those people who are making sexist comments and jokes whether in person or online.
In conclusion, a stereotype is any notion that is widely selected about certain types of people or specific ways of behavior that is intended to be representing the entire group of those people or behaviors as a whole. Stereotype is bias or judgment that is widely expected about an individual or group even though it is not always accurate and it is over simplified. Gender stereotypes can end up causing unfair treatment and inequality to someone of a certain gender.
- Roy C. O’Brien M. Peyton V. Mistry R. Hruda L. Jacobs A. Caldera Y. Huston A. Roy C. (2017). Gender-Role Cognition in Three-Year-Old Boys and Girls. Retrieved from https://link.springer.com/article/10.1023/A:1007036600980
- Chia C. Moore L. Lam N. Chuang J. Cheng S. (2017). Cultural Differences in Gender Role Attitudes between Chinese and American Students. Retrieved from https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/BF01560275
- Mcleod S. (2015). Stereotypes. Retrieved from https://www.simplypsychology.org/katz-braly.html