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Discuss the role of genes and hormones in Gender Identity Development

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Introduction

Transfer-Encoding: chunked Discuss the role of genes and hormones in Gender Identity Development The definition of sex and gender according to many biologist and psychologists is different. Sex is known as the biological and physical anatomy of an individual and gender is known as the behaviours, roles and activities an individual labels themselves with within a society. Humans carry 23 pairs of chromosomes within their genetic make-up and one of these pairs determines the sex of the individual and is known as the sex chromosomes. For females this pair will be identified as XX chromosomes and for males this pair will be identified as XY chromosomes. According to biologists, these chromosomes play a role in the development of gender as these chromosomes play a role in the development of male and female genitals. A gene on male chromosomes known as the SRY gene result in the development of the testes and the absence of the SRY gene result in the development of the ovaries in females. ...read more.

Middle

For example testosterone is said to be linked with aggression, which explains why males are more aggressive that females. Male hormones have also been linked to the development of parts of the brain, for example the right side of the brain controls spatial skills and brain scans have shown that this side of the brain is more developed in males than females, thus explaining why men are said to be better drivers. Lastly, brain scans have also shown that the left hemisphere that controls speech and language are is more developed in females than males, which explains why women are said to be better communicators that men. The biological approach believes that these differences in brain scans are due to the differences in male and female hormones, thus having effect on the development of gender. Support for the biological approach to gender development comes from a case study by Money et al who looked at the case of a man known as Bruce Remier. ...read more.

Conclusion

This supports the biological approach to gender development as it provides evidence for the effect of hormones on later behaviours. However we must be cautious when using this study to support the biological approach to gender as it was carried on monkeys. Therefore the results found cannot be generalised to a wider population of humans. This suggests that more research must be carried out in order to support the biological approach to gender development. In conclusion this biological approach to gender development provides an adequate explanation to gender development which has been supported by various studies however this explanation fails to consider psychological factors and social factors such as the influence of parents or peers on the development of gender which has been evident in research such as Fagot et al. This suggests that an approach that considers both biological and psychological factors will be a better accepted explanation to explain the development of gender. ...read more.

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