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Chapter 4 : Gender

An examination of gender from the theoretical perspectives of developmental psychology, social psychology, and sociology

William Cockrell

on 25 October 2016

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Transcript of Chapter 4 : Gender

Chapter 4 : Sex & Gender
Sex or Gender?
biological predisposition, genetics
Genitalia - Primary
Facial Hair - Secondary
Breasts - Secondary
Adam's Apple - Secondary
Potential Outcomes
- Female
- Male
- Kleinfelter's Syndrome
- Turner Syndrome
(Diamond, 1994; Fausto-Sterling, 2007)
psychological characteristics
Feminine (e.g., Passive, Caring, Emotional)
Masculine (e.g., Aggressive, Competitive)
Measuring Gender?
(Bem, 1981)
Bem's Gendered Assumptions
Gender Polarization
Biological Essentialism
Developmental theories of gender
(Jean Baker-Miller, 1976)
Cognitive - development theories
(e.g. Pleck, 1975)
Gender - schema theory
(Bem, 1981, 1983, 1985)
Cognitive - Development Theories
Children learn gender through forming personal cognitive representations
Action Figures
Gross Stuff
Video games
Being Dirty
What they learn to cognitively associate with their gender determines behavior/personality
(Kohlberg, 1966; Pleck, 1975)
Emphasizes gender rigidity during adolescence
Some theories consist of multiple stages of gender conceptualization
Gender variability/flexibility more common in adulthood
Gender Role Transcendence
: Final stage, responding according to situation instead of by gender
Current opposing theories
Socialization supporters:
"Variation within each sex is greater than differences between the sexes" (Hyde, 2005)
Are differences "real" if taught by society and not biological?
Evolutionary approach:
genders are different due to sexual selection that "preserves" different adaptive traits to males and females (Buss, 2003)
Aggression,status, and earning power for men
Attractiveness, caring, and nurturing for women
Buss (1990) studied participants in 37 countries that supported these findings
Gender Differences?
Eagly & Wood's (1999) rebuttal to Buss
Gender equality was not controlled for in Buss' study
Gender egalitarian countries report lower perceptions of gender differences
Hyde's (2005) evidence against Buss
85% overlap on psychological traits
There ARE differences on attitudes towards casual sex and physical aggression
Changing Cognitive Associations
2013 Global Gender Report
Gender Stratification
Gender Stratification :
the process by which almost every culture places unequal experiences of wealth, power, and privilege in men's control.
Gender stratification argues that women are typically treated less than men in society.
Patriarchy :
cultural value where men are in control of society and women. Most common form of gendered ruling.
Matriarchy :
cultural value where women are in control of society and men. This is very rare, we only have historical reports, and some gender theorists argue it has never existed.
Physical Differences :
Men are 9% taller, 18% heavier, and 20% stronger than females. How could this be socially influenced instead of biologically influenced?
As young girls are given more exposure to athletic activities, we see that the differences listed above are shrinking!
Added onto physical discussions, how important are physical advantages in today's modern world?
Most sociologists are hesitant to say that there are natural biological differences between men and women.
From a biological and psychological perspective, levels of hormones may influence some gender differences that are exaggerated by social values.
Childhood Education and Gender
Girls have been outperforming boys on academic achievement since the early 90s. The gap has only increased also!
Girls are staying the top in traditionally feminine subjects (English, Lit, Arts, History)
The gender gap in STEM fields is still highly male BUT girls in school are now out performing boys in male dominated subjects like math and science.
If this trend stays stable that means that the STEM field's gender gap will be greatly reduced in a couple of generations
Is there less "stigma" for girls to have good grades than boys?
Individual differences in aggression
By 17 months, there is a gendered difference in aggression where boys display more aggressive behavior than girls.
There are biological and social reasons that this gendered difference is displayed.
Boys do have higher amounts of testosterone, but we now know that women have levels of testosterone also. So this cannot be the only reason there are gender differences in aggression.
Around the time that children understand gender expectations is when levels of aggression drastically change (before this understanding there is no significant difference between the genders and aggression).
Girls also receive more social sanctions for physical violence than boys (e.g., they are just being boys).
It is somewhat true that girls use more relational style aggression than boys. The difference is not statistically significant though.
Girls rely on relational aggression the most during adolescence--think though, if girls receive strong sanctions for hitting somebody, what other option do they have?
Gender Development in Children
Gender typing :
behavior that is largely influenced by society and unconscious. This behavior is where we associated particular emotions, behaviors, and items with one sex while acknowledging the other sex should not use the item (e.g., dolls for girls, race cars for boys).
The same theories that influence morality and aggressive tendencies influence how children form gender beliefs : social learning theory and cognitive-development theory with one extra, gender-schema theory.
By age 2 children have a very firm grasp on different gendered categories.
The younger the child is, the more rigid gender beliefs are. Gender incongruent behavior becomes more common as one reaches adulthood.
Children from ages 3-6 do NOT want to be friends with children who display gender incongruent behavior unless told the behavior is okay.
Gender & the Mass Media
Men having always had more leading roles than women. Women typically only have lead roles when there is not a male counterpart.
The occupational stereotypes in America are highly reflective in American media. Women are usually supportive roles to men (wives, mothers, secretaries, and assistants).
The top two paid actors on television :
Charlie Sheen ($875,000 an episode) and Mariska Hartigay ($400,000 an episode).
Music videos usually have even more blatant gendered differences (e.g., the Video Ho).
Common gender differences in ads :
Men are taller, women are usually in a submissive position (visually or symbolically), sexualization of women, men ignore females, females focus on males, and facial expressions (men serious and females childlike or sexualized).
Video games have even more extreme gendered expectations than advertisements.
Classic Gendered Ads
Role Reversals To Show Differences
Religion & Politics
In the United States, the first female House Representative was elected in 1917.
Isabel Peron was the first woman in the world to become the President of a country (Argentina)
The Nineteenth Amendment (1920) :
gave women the federal right to vote.
24% of State Legislators are women and 12% are State Governors (6 states)
In the whole world, women hold only 20% of governmental seats.
In one survey, 94% believed God was male. Only 6% reported they thought God was female.
Very few, if any, organized religions place power in female hands. Many New Age Wiccans are the closest to worshiping a female deity.
Quotes from religious texts
"Men are the protectors and maintainers of women....Hence good women are devoutly obedient...As for those whose rebelliousness you fear, admonish them, banish them from your bed, and scourge them" (Qur'an, W. Kaufman, 1976).
"A man...is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man. For man was not made from woman, but woman from man. Neither was man created for woman, but woman for man" (1 Corinthians 11:7-9).
"Wives, be subject to your husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church....As the church is subject to Christ, so let wives also be subject in everything to their husbands" (Ephesians 5:22-24)
Military and Work
World War II was when the American military started allowing females to enter
Women were around 2% of the military during this time period.
Today, around 14% of the military is made up of women.
Is the so-called physical difference really important when almost all military maneuvers are completed with drones and technology?
58% of women work whereas 71% of men worked in 2010.
Social Role Theory :
Gender differences are created through gender roles (Eagly, 1987)
Primary gender role =
sexual division of labor
Male gendered roles are commonly more valued in society than female gender roles
Gendered Work Differences
The median income for a male in the United States is
. The median income for a female is
Reasons for gendered, work inequality :
men hold higher level positions, America expects women take care of children, women are expected to take care of the house, distance (for females), and status (full time vs. part time).
Glass Ceiling :
Argument that women are subtly discriminated against higher level positions (e.g., they typically never reach the top compared to men).
Only 16 out of the Fortune 500 companies have a female CEO
Gender Socialization
Gender Identity:
A personal "description" of how masculine or feminine a person is
in relation to their culture.

Typically, gender identity matches a person's biological sex.
Gender Roles:
specific roles or tasks that are assigned to people based on their biological sex. These gender roles are not hardwired into us, we learn them through socialization.
Some gender roles change according to the culture (e.g., fathers), but other roles are almost universal (aggressiveness and masculinity).
Not innate in children (Biernet, 1991)
Most common attributes for men:
adventurous, independent, stoicism, and sexual prowess
. For women:
sentimental, submissive, helpless, and dependent.
Biological Determinism :
the idea that males and females are born different. This argument states our biology (read : genes and cellular makeup) make men and women drastically different.
Differential Socialization :
the opposite of biological determinism. Differential Socialization is the argument that men and women are taught to act differently.
History of Female Politicians
Victoria Woodhull was the first woman to run for president in the United States. She ran in 1872.
Kimmel reflects on the argument that more gender oppressed countries have had female leaders before the United States!
The following countries have had female presidents or prime ministers:
, Pakistan, Great Britain, Norway,
, Portugal, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Canada, Australia,
, Bolivia, Senegal, Chile,
Costa Rica
, Jamaica,
, South Korea, Indonesia, Israel, Sri Lanka, New Zealand, Bandladesh,
, and The Philippines.
The United States is 71st in the ranking for percentage of female legislators in congress.
Some countries without national running water have more female representatives than we do!!
17% are Senate/House Representatives and 24% of State Legislators are women.
6 out of 50 governors in the United States are women.
The major arguments for why women are not more represented in America is due to prejudice, political barriers, and resources.
Ordination of Women
Today, around 32% of students in seminary schools are women.
Different denominations have different rules on female preachers. Reform Judaism, the Evangelical Luthern Church, and the Episcopal Church all allow female preachers.
Prohibition of Women's Ordination:
Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI) created this term and argued that it is infallable. When popes use this term it basically means "no questions about it, the bible is not translated wrong". Essentially, catholicism uses this as the rule to prevent women priests.
In 1964, the Southern Baptist Convention started allowing female preachers. In 2000, they changed their mind and revoked this stance. Hundreds of female preachers immediately lost their titles when the SBC made this decision which is still in place.
In the 1970s, the Pope of the time created a committee of biblical scholars to review the Bible. Their goal was to make a conclusive statement on what the bible states about the ordination of women.
The committee acknowledged no scripture states women should not be priests....unfortunately, no changes were made to the rules.
Wage Gap Between The Sexes
One research study in your textbook mentions examining people who are transgendered and their experiences at work.
Male-to-Female workers received a DOCK IN PAY BY A THIRD WHEN THEY BECAME A WOMAN.
Female-to-Male workers received an INCREASE IN PAY WHEN THEY RETURNED TO WORK AS A MALE.
In 1995, the
Wall Street Journal
says the wage gap is present early in childhood. They report that young girls tend to receive lower allowances, but do more chores.
In her lifetime, a white woman is going to make around $420,000 less than a white male. The gap is even larger for minorities.
A college-educated woman tends to make around the same amount as a male high school graduate.
Age is important!
At 15-24, women make 94% of what men make. By 55-59, women make only 62% of what men make.
Childbirth and the Glass Ceiling
One statistician argues that women permanently lose 7% of pay for each child they have.
Men who support traditional gendered segregation tend to make around $8,500 dollars more than men who support equal rights among the sexes.
"Women make up 50% of workers, but are only 12% of managers." (Kimmel, pg. 265, 2013).
A common argument is that most women being denied promotions is not intentional, but she does not have access to the "boy's club" of workers who make decisions on the golf course and outside of work (times when female workers may be taking care of children).
Equal Pay Act:
created in 1963 by Congress. As you can guess, the goal is to reduce income inequality.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC):
the first task of the Equal Pay Act was to create this committee. This committee is responsible for reviewing work discrimination cases.
Sexual Harassment
Sexual Harassment :
unwanted sexual behavior that is present in the workplace.
Prior to the 1960s (and even now), many people do not view sexual harassment as a social problem. Some believe this just comes with women being in the workforce....
Title VII and Title IX are the legal sanctions that made sexual harassment a crime.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) :
Created by Congress to help investigate complaints of workplace harassment.
Quid Pro Quo :
sexual harassment where the workers is "rewarded" for sexual behaviors at work.
Hostile Environment :
more widespread that involves everything BUT sexual or physical activity
Sexual Harassment Continued
84% of reported sexual harassment offenders are men.
If women held a majority of positions in power, would men be more likely to experience sexual harassment?
Until 1998, a person could only be sexually harassed by somebody of the opposite sex.
Surprisingly, most men report being sexually harassed by other male co-workers. Remember, sexual harassment can also include creating hostile work environments.
The individual does not have to receive physical sexual harassment. A large portion of sexual harassment are verbal comments. Therefore, physical behaviors are not required.
If the company does not have a sexual harassment policy in place; they are responsible for all sexual harassment charges. The policies place the responsibility on the offender.
The History of Feminism
the movement which supports the stance that the sexes should be treated equally.
Liberal Feminism:
feminists that are largely concerned with women being given equal access to resources that men receive. Most original feminists are classified as liberal feminists.
Liberal Feminism argues
women are too different to compare

Radical Feminism:
symbolism tends to make us think of "bra burners with underarm hair".....not the definition at all. Radical feminists tend to argue that men and their power are the problem. Radical Feminism would focus on: male domination, the female body, pornography, rape, and prostitution.
Radical feminists argue that
all women are in one category.
Multicultural Feminism:
"Multicultural feminism understands that each woman does not experience her oppression in quite the same way as every other". (Kimmel, pg. 314, 2013).
Statements a feminist might make: rape is a social problem, men should receive paternity leave, women should receive equal pay, and it is healthy for men to express their feelings.
The Story of David Reimer
Identity versus Role Confusion
Erik Erikson acknowledged that the most important social development of teenagers is the creation of the personal identity.
Identity :
a general description of yourself that includes who you are, what your beliefs are, and you life goals.
Identity Crisis :
Erikson's belief that teenagers in Industrialized Societies have a "crisis" in trying to discover who they are.
The term is misleading given that most research argues this is a positive way to form your identity. The only way it could be harmful is if the teenager experiments with risky behaviors (substance abuse, physical stunts, or unsafe sex).
Identity Vs. Role Confusion :
if the teenager is able to form their identity without negative societal repercussions they will succesfully form an identity. Teenagers who cannot form identities that suit their skills experience role confusion.
Sexual Orientation
Sexual Orientation :
of emotional and sexual attraction to a specific sexual category.
Heterosexuality :
being attracted to the opposite sex
Homosexuality :
being attracted to the same sex. Estimates place homosexuals @ around 10% of the global population (Kinsey, 1948; Gates, 2011).
Bisexuality :
being attracted to both sexes.
Pansexuality :
argument that attraction can occur without sex as a primary basis. Limited scientific support.
Fluidity is a very hard variable to measure when it comes to sexual orientation. It is hard to measure sexual attraction from sexual behaviors (e.g., this works for all forms of sexual orientation).
If heterosexual people cannot remember when they first were attracted to the opposite sex, is it appropriate to ask a homosexual or bisexual person this?
Direct quote from a textbook (Coon & Mitterer, 12th edition, pg. 422).
The textbook authors give these interesting arguments about
equal expectations
between different sexual orientations :
Sexual Orientation is a deep part of personal identity. Starting with their earliest erotic feelings, most people remember being attracted to either the opposite sex or the same sex. The chances are practically nil of an
heterosexual or homosexual person being "converted" from one orientation to the other. If you are heterosexual, you are probably certain that nothing could ever make you have homoerotic feelings. If so, then you know how homosexual persons feel about the prospects for changing their sexual orientation.
Yet again, we have to understand that if heterosexuality is primarily determined by genetic and hormonal factors, the same perspective should be taken for homosexual and bisexual orientations of attraction.
One study found that if one identical twin is homosexual or bisexual, there is a 50-percent chance that the other twin is too. Similar findings lead some researchers to estimate that sexual orientation is 30 to 70 percent genetic (Mustanski, Chivers, & Bailey, 2002).
Acknowledging this reliable research, how can we say that same-sex couples will "turn" their children gay?
Asexuality :
no sexual attraction to either sex. There are many misconceptions about people who are asexual. Many asexual people have healthy, romantic relationships. Very few people are asexual because of traumatic sexual abuse.
Rates of asexuality increase with 65+ people. This is both biological and social.
Further descriptions of sexuality
the belief that heterosexuality is superior. Also relates to heterosexual people do not reflect on homosexual relationships often.
the hatred of homosexual and bisexual people. Is not based on fear like name implies. The same concept as racism or sexism.
term often used to reference drag queens. These people typically only "dress-up" as the other sex. They still relate to their biological sex.
People who choose to identify as a different sex. May describe feeling intense forms of anxiety in their current body.
Many transgendered people have no desire to undergo any hormonal or surgical procedures.
Doing Gender:
the end result of gender typing and socialization. This is the public or private performance of gendered behaviors.
Transgenderism and the Body
To recap, transvestites do not want to change their body. Transgendered people often feel a strong desire to alter their body.
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT):
The process by which men are given estrogen and women are given testosterone. The goal is to reduce the presence of their natural secondary sex characteristics and develop them for the other sex.
In America, HRT typically lasts around two years and it is strongly suggested the person goes through psychological therapy at the same time.
Sex Reassignment Surgery (SRS):
updated term we use instead of "sex change". The doctors remove the original genitalia and replace it with the desired genitalia.
After 1978, most insurances WILL cover a sexual reassignment surgery if the psychologist determines this is necessary for their well being.
Similar to gay and bisexual teenagers aware of sexuality, transgendered teenagers tend to always know they wanted to be in the other body.
Puberty tends to be very stressful for transgendered teens. They are receiving the physical characteristics they do not want and this causes anxiety and self-hate.
Biological Essentialism and Transgenderism:
"My body and gender do not match, I have to fix my body". This references our gendered/sex beliefs are so strong people will have surgery to follow the expectations.
Social Constructionism and Transgenderism:
These people are "doing gender" in their own way. These people are creating/constructing new ways to express gender and sexuality.
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