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How is gender influenced by social structures

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Introduction

How is gender influenced by social structures What is meant by identity? Firstly this essay is going to explore what is meant by identity. Identity is made up of individual characteristics by which a person is known. Internal factors such as physical appearance, personality, mental ability and sex would have an affect on a person's identity. Then there are the external factors such as family, class, religion, culture, occupation and nationality which would influence one's identity. Then, even beyond all these personal and social structures, societal opinions about gender, race, culture, ethnicity and nationality must have an impact on identity. Many attributes of identity are formed from childhood experience, adolescence, early adulthood and are ever forming. Identity can therefore be ever changing externally according to the life experiences through which a person goes through. Births, deaths, marriage, divorce, abuse, immigration, good or bad fortune for example are likely to cause change, and therefore influence change to identity. These may ultimately result in a change to the internal identity: physical, mental etc Gender identities are formed by several different factors, i.e. individual and collective; social and biological. Biologically, it would be quite easy to look at the body of a person and be able to distinguish between a male and a female, from their genitalia. ...read more.

Middle

Class, our economic background, education and the lifestyle we have. Occupation and Income. Life experience and upbringing. Change. Biology and Genetics. Society. All the factors that make up a person's identity are so complex and often intertwined, it is impossible to any one of them, but all are ever changing and always developing, which is why the identity of a person is always changing and forming. Word Count: 595 In what ways can occupation and employment affect identity? Occupation plays a great role in who we are. In earlier times it was men who went out to work and were the sole breadwinners, while women stayed at home to care for their children and the home. In more recent times, although men are generally the primary breadwinners, there are a significant number of women who are in paid employment. Many women go out to work to help support their families financially and in few cases are even the main earner, but nowadays there are a large number of women who choose to have careers before, as well as or instead of having families. As much as the occupation or career path that a person chooses has an impact on their identity, often their identity itself would have played a key role in them choosing that occupation. ...read more.

Conclusion

Whereas in an occupation such as hairdressing, fashion or beauty, you would dress in a more trendy fashion as you are selling an image to your clientele. The colleagues with whom you work often become a part of your social group of peers. It is more likely that people will socialize in circles of people with common occupations or similar earning power. As well as "putting food on the table, clothes on our backs and a roof over our heads", employment provides us with a sense of worth, it feeds our pride. Someone who is unemployed, whether or not by choice, may be labeled as lazy and useless, and have a general lack of respect from society. Especially if it is not by their own choice, they probably feel worthless. Although it is now common for women to go out to work, men still see their roles as the main breadwinner. Where once that was their role, and the women stayed at home to look after the needs of their husbands and children, women are now holding down high-powered jobs, as well as still seeing to the general needs of their families. Occupation and income are both important aspects of identity, who we are, how we see ourselves, how we represent ourselves and how others see us. ...read more.

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