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Gender & Sociology

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Tania Jafary

on 14 November 2012

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Transcript of Gender & Sociology

Hurmat Aziz Distinguishing between Sex and Gender Sociologists distinguish sex as a biologically based classification and gender as socially constructed phenomena. •Biological sex is not a clear cut category because some babies are intersexed which means they are born with mixed male and female biological characteristics.

•The term intersexed particularly is not used to recognize this category. In US and other countries parents of newborn babies collaborate with physicians to assign their newborns to one of the recognized sexes.

•Intersexed infants are treated with surgery or hormonal therapy.

•The number comes out to about 1 in 1500 to 1 in 2000 births. But a lot more people than that are born with subtler forms of sex anatomy variations, some of which won’t show up until later in life. Intersexed A summary of statistics drawn from an article by Brown University researcher Anne Fausto-Sterling. The basis for that article was an extensive review of the medical literature from 1955 to 1998 aimed at producing numeric estimates for the frequency of sex variations. The frequency of some conditions, such as congenital adrenal hyperplasia, differs for different populations. These statistics are approximations. Not XX and not XY one in 1,666 births
Klinefelter (XXY) one in 1,000 births
Androgen insensitivity syndrome one in 13,000 births
Partial androgen insensitivity syndrome one in 130,000 births
Classical congenital adrenal hyperplasia one in 13,000 births
Late onset adrenal hyperplasia one in 66 individuals
Vaginal agenesis one in 6,000 births
Ovotestes one in 83,000 births
Idiopathic (no discernable medical cause) one in 110,000 births
Iatrogenic (caused by medical treatment, for instance
progestin administered to pregnant mother) no estimate
5 alpha reductase deficiency no estimate
Mixed gonadal dysgenesis no estimate
Complete gonadal dysgenesis one in 150,000 births
Hypospadias (urethral opening in perineum or along
penile shaft) one in 2,000 births
Hypospadias (urethral opening between corona and
tip of glans penis) one in 770 births
Total number of people whose bodies differ from standard
male or female one in 100 births
Total number of people receiving surgery to “normalize”
genital appearance one or two in 1,000 births •Theoretically one’s sex is determined by two chromosomes. If it is XX it’s a female and if it is XY it’s a male.

•Before 1999 the mandatory results of sex tests of female participants in international athletic competition have shown cases of when chromosomes do not match anatomy.

•Females who failed the tests were disqualified from the Olympic Competition.

•A Spanish hurdler Maria Jose’ Martinez Patino was genetically male . She lost her right to compete in international athletic events.

•She struggled for 3 years and then the International Amateur Athletic Foundation allowed her to participate. Sex as a biological concept •Sex is a biological distinction determined by the anatomical traits essential to reproduction.
•A person’s sex is based on primary sex characteristics which distinguish them from male and female. Genetic Distinction Trannsexuality •Transsexuality is also known as Gender Dysphoria, literally a misery with regard to gender, is the condition of being in a state of conflict between gender and physical sex.

•A transsexual is a person in which the sex-related structures of the brain that define gender identity are exactly opposite the physical sex organs of the body.

•A transsexual is a mind that is literally, physically, trapped in a body of the opposite sex.

•Transsexuality occurs roughly equally in both physical males and physical females, and is caused by factors (such as a critically timed hormonal release caused by stress in the mother, or by the presence of hormone mimicking chemicals present during critical development) which interfere with fetal development

•The standard treatment for a diagnosis of transsexuality is to reassign the transsexual to a physical sex congruent with their gender identity, a process involving the administration of appropriate hormones and surgery. The success of this treatment is exceedingly high, and many transsexuals go on to live successful lives. Secondary sex Characteristics In addition to primary sex characteristics and chromosomes there is secondary sex characteristics to distinguish one sex from another. These are the physical traits such as quality of voice, distribution of facial and body hair and skeletal form. They are not essential to reproduction but result from the so-called male and female hormones. Gender & Sociology Tania Tahir
Hurmat Aziz
Muhammad Farooq Suleman
Maria Hassan
Mian Hamza Sagheer
Ayesha Rehmat
Mahnam Zahid
Muhammad Saad Butt
Fatima Ehsan Gender Inequality & The Functionalist View Maria Hassan Gender inequality refers to unequal treatment or perceptions of individuals based on their gender.

When sociologist study gender inequality between males and females, they seek to identify the social factors that put one sex at a disadvantage relative to another.

Gender inequality can be scene at almost all levels of the society.

Women are not given the same job opportunities as men and tend to earn less than men.

Opportunities for women education are highly limited especially in developing countries like Pakistan and Afghanistan. Furthermore gender inequality exists as women do not tend to get their due representative share in the field of politics.

Equal representation is not a reality when over 50% of Americans are women yet only 22% of American senators are female.

Women in countries like Saudi Arabia are not allowed to drive, while women cannot travel alone in countries like Syria and Jordan. What More Women’s unequal legal rights increase their vulnerability to violence.

In many countries in the region, no specific laws or provisions exist to penalize domestic violence.

Female infanticide in another extreme example of gender inequality and how one sex is preferred over the other.  Abortion, neglect, abandonment, and infanticide have been known to occur to female infants.

In countries like India this is a common practice. The normal ratio of births should be 950 girls for every 1000 boys, however in some regions the number is as low as 300. Gender Inequality Causes of Gender Inequality The most compelling explanations of gender inequality are materialist theories that use cross-cultural data on the status of women and men. Materialist theories explain gender inequality as an outcome of how women and men are tied to the economic structure of society. Such theories stress control and distribution of valued resources as crucial facts in producing stratification To explain gender inequality, sociologists turn to the surrounding systems that affect all human behavior. Most theories highlight the institutional structures that assign women and men different positions, different roles, and consequently different behaviors. Gender inequality in Pakistan PAKISTAN is no exception to the generally abysmal state of gender equality the world over. About 50 per cent of Pakistani girls drop out of school and our literacy rate for women is amongst the lowest in the world.

Perhaps the most widely cited reason for gender inequality in the Pakistani context relates to the social custom of exalting sons above daughters.

While women of high-income urban families are more apt to receive higher education, they may still face restrictions in terms of labour-market opportunities.

A current example of gender inequality is the case of Malala Yousafzai. The attack on her proves the price women working towards change and fighting for their basic rights have to pay and level of gender inequality that exists in our society. How to overcome this inequality? Looking at countries that have exhibited progress in eliminating gender inequality, the one thing that they all have in common is an expansion in the set of labour-market opportunities for women. Once women’s earning capacities improve, not only is the economic imperative driving parents to spend resources in favour of boys removed but women also have substantially more freedom with regard to decision-making.

Availability of equal educational opportunities to both is also an important step towards tackling this issue.

Thus, Pakistan should invest in the fixing of labor-market inequalities. After all, it is the inability of women to make their own life choices that is the root of many of the injustices they suffer. The Functionalist View Functionalists believe that traditional gender roles help to integrate society.

Functionalist use the term gender role socialization which  is a set of social and behavioral norms that are associated with a particular gender. For example femininity is marked by traits such as nurture and sensitivity while bravery and competitiveness are marks of masculinity.

Functionalist also talk about gender role conformity. It instills in men the fear that they won’t be attractive to women if they are too feminine and vice versa.
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