• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Gender is determined by society, forming a self-concept whether we are male or female - gender concept. Sexual identity is a reference towards our biological status as males and females. However gender identity is society bred

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Gender is determined by society, forming a self-concept whether we are male or female - gender concept. Sexual identity is a reference towards our biological status as males and females. However gender identity is society bred, it refers to the classification of others, as male or female and us. Gender role refers to behaviors and attitudes on which society expects from them or considers appropriate behavior to, their biological sex. To be typically masculine or feminine they have to conform to their respective gender roles. Gender stereotypes are widely held beliefs about psychological differences between males and females, which can often lead to prejudices between the sexes. Prejudice is defined as an attitude. Stereotypes are over simplifications, which can lead to prejudices and discriminations. Prejudices are caused by three main theories: - * Social inequality theory * Scape-goating theory * Personality theory Social inequality theory proposes that prejudice is caused by: - a) Competition for unequally distributed resources. For example the brown eyes, blue eyes experiment (Elliott, in Aronson & Osherow, 1980. b) Group identity, which relies on using language and dress to distinguish between in members and out members. c) Stereotyping is the simple distribution of certain characteristics to all members of a social group. For example brown-eyed people were more intelligent than blue-eyed people. d) Ethnocentrism is favoritism towards the in group and disfavor towards the out group in order to enhance our positive self image, especially those who have low self esteem. ...read more.

Middle

Eagly (1983), argued that in at least some cases a significant difference does reflect a considerable sex difference. He compared the results of different but equivalent studies and from this arose substantial sex differences on some measures. According to Eagly, research has tended to hide sex differences than uncover sex differences. 'The differences within each gender are, as noted earlier, at least as great as the differences between them (Maccoby, 1980)'6 Androgyny is the term used to describe people who possess qualities, which are regarded as both typically masculine and feminine. An androgynous person has no trouble in coming to terms with their biological identity but clinches masculine and feminine elements into their persona. In 1974, a Stanford University psychologist, Sandra Bem, developed the concept of androgyny. "Andro-" means "man," and "gyn-" refers to "woman." Bem does not view femininity and masculinity at opposite poles of a continuum. In other words, if you are high in masculine traits, you are not automatically low in feminine traits. The androgynous person is high in both masculine and feminine traits. Androgynous people can be aggressive or yielding, forceful or gentle, sensitive or assertive, as the particular situation requires. Usually, bright or creative people tend to be androgynous. Androgynous people are more adaptable. They behave in ways appropriate to the given situation, regardless of whether the behaviour is masculine or feminine. ...read more.

Conclusion

Whitley's studies (1985) contradicted Bems work. He suggests that most psychologically healthy individuals are those that rate themselves higher on masculine traits. Also another criticism of Bems work is where the study was conducted, in Stanford University, which is an Ivy League school in America. The methodology of her original study is not a representative sample. The aim of the study is to investigate the attitudes towards gender stereotyping in the 21st century. As a result of Bem's study the experimental hypothesis is 'An individuals sex will have an effect upon their score in a psychometric test.' And the null hypothesis is 'The sex of the individual will have no effect upon their score in a psychometric test, any differences will be due to chance factors.' This is a two-tailed hypothesis because it predicts that the independent variable will have an effect on the dependant variable but the direction is not specified. It also does not predict which direction the experimenter expects to take. 1 Gross R and McIlveen R Psychology A New Introduction (P463) 2 Gross R Psychology The Science of Mind and Behaviour (P524) 3 Gross R & McIlveen R, op cit (p369, box 45.3) 4 Gross R & McIlveen R, Ibid, (p369) 5 Gross R, op cit (p524) 6 Gross R & McIlveen R, op cit, (p396) 7 Bem S.L. http://www.garysturt.free-online.co.uk/bem.htm 8 Bem S.L. op cit ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Sociology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Sociology essays

  1. Compare and contrast Karl Marx's and Michel Foucault's analysis of the concept power.

    Instead he frequently mentions "pouvoir which merely denotes the action"(Aron.1964.Cited in Morris,2002.P:xvi) So "Power exists only when it is put into action".(Foucault.1982. Cited in Morris,2002.P:xvii) Foucault agrees with Marx that power works best when it is hidden from view. We are encouraged to think that the government is working for us and keeping us safe.

  2. Pygmalion - What does the play show us of the society of ...

    their deprived living conditions but also educate the poor to help them to help themselves. The rich minded their own businesses, disassociating themselves from the poor and their wants and needs. Shaw wanted the middle class to notice the deprived working class; much like Charles Dickens did, and wanted to eradicate the class divide and ignorance between the two.

  1. Lois Gould X: A Fabulous Childs Story brings up the factor of raising a ...

    In today's society from the moment parents find out they are expecting a child most people want to know whether they will be having a boy or girl, and once a mother gives birth to a baby the first thing that is announced is if the baby is a boy or a girl.

  2. Pakistani Women In a Changing Society.

    Ordinance of February 1979. This Ordinance provided a new basis, as we shall see, for intimidation and terrorisation of women by husbands or male relatives, especially amongst the urban poor, but not amongst them alone. Ironically, the Ordinance has also created a situation in which women victims of rape dare

  1. Compare and Contrast the Biological and Social Learning Theories of Gender Development

    They unconsciously chose the toys depending on whether they thought it was a boy or a girl. The Biological theory is more scientific than the social learning theory. Normally the egg (carrying an 'X' chromosome) is fertilised by another 'X' chromosome to make a girl and is fertilised by a 'Y' chromosome to make a boy.

  2. What is more important to your identity? Your Social Group, Nationality, Gender or Ethnicity?

    To be male or female is something in which is fixed, for most of us anyway, Paul Hewitt was born as the women Martine he describes an incident from his life, he explains that he was on a bus, when attacked by three male youths, Hewitt then goes on to question what he is doing here (i.e.

  1. Diversity - Gender and education Factors such as ethnicity, economic status and gender can ...

    However, Skelton and Francis (2003) suggest the cause for this apparent difference in attainment is not straightforward. According to Charles there is evidence to suggest that this is not a new theory. Relating back to the 11+ exam, in which girls needed a higher score than boys to gain entry into grammar school.

  2. Gender Capital ? - Bourdieu and Gender Inequality

    Bourdieu describes three forms of cultural capital; 'Embodied', 'Objectified' and 'Institutionalised'. Embodied Capital CulINY-BUMSKKDZ ___WORKGROUP _"_TINY-BUMSKKDZ ___DEFAULT _____�_�(__________________________________________________________9ce' (Krais, 1993:168). To name a thing as female is to name it as subordinate, and '...it is clear that the symbolic aspects oeir child to have the best advantages in life will send her/him to a 'good' school.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work