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Gender Roles

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Essay title: Gender Roles

Femininity and masculinity are topics that have been debated over in our society extensively, through psychological research and day to day interaction with people. Children learn from their parents as well as society the concept of “feminine” and “masculine.” The majority of people tend to believe that these conceptions are biological but I believe it is more cultural. From birth, female children are shaped by society as being sweet, caring, loving, and delicate and usually associated with the color pink. While male children are shaped by being tough, aggressive, and competitive and associated with the color blue. As these children grow, the boy is given a football to play with and the girl a Barbie. All of these aspects illustrate how gender socialization takes place early in children’s lives and how society has made it a norm to accept these stereotypes.

The majority of the stereotypes are usually influenced by the child’s parents. Children are not worried about their gender or identity until late childhood. It is then that the child will begin to develop a sense of self and begin to understand their own identity. Gender roles in Western culture have been changing constantly in recent years due to the fact that there are constant changes in our society (women entering the workforce, Betty the homemaker is not too ideal these days, and single parent homes). Gender roles are part of the socialization process. These ideals are given to children from birth and they shape children by teaching them certain values are creating behavior patterns that follow their social roles. During the early stages of a child’s life the mother is the dominant figure. She really is the only figure until the child starts to play with other children. This is when children can venture away from their mother and find and develop their on own sense of self.

Biology too plays a major role in the differences between male and female. Genetically, there are differing chromosomes. XY for male and XX for female. These chromosome differences account for the physical differences that men and women have. In dealing with body composition, males are more likely to be taller and more muscular. Males also have testosterone, the male sex hormone. It is said that males with high levels are more confrontational and smile less. Women that have low levels of estrogen, the female sex hormone, are said to be more disagreeable and confrontational. Maybe because men have such a huge advantage over women by being physically larger, they are supposed to be more

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