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Sex and Gender.

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  • Essay length: 3066 words
  • Submitted: 18/09/2003
GCSE Sociology

An extract from this essay...

Sex and Gender


The taboo nature of there problems may mean they are isolated and often kept in the dark. This may cause considerable Confusion as although gender is a cultural conception it is often misrepresented as biological facts. In reality, there is a wide spectrum of sex/gender identity and people can be dotted anywhere along the line between male and female masculine and feminine. Some people may be relived to discover their intersexuality particularly if their sexual self-identification is at odds with the sex that has been assigned to them

. However, maybe the real discomfort (disorder) grows through adolescence and into adulthood, as family and society, in ignorance of their underlying gender identity, relentlessly reinforce expectations imposed upon them in accordance with their physical appearance alone.

One problem is who decides who needs treatment and who doesn't. Evidence (from the new scientist) shows that boys are six times more likely to singled out for treatment as parents see boys acting or dressing like girls as less acceptable.

Another problem is many children experience identity confusion and many grow out of it or work through it managing with out help to resolve the confusion for themselves. Treatment may interrupt this important process to assert a contrived general assumption about what men and women should be.

It's not right to Pathologies something because it is not yet socially acceptable. Treatment of this disorder is based on the belief that happiness is possible only for individuals who conform to male or female sex and gender roles. In today's society, this may be partly true many people may be suicidal in need of help. However as with any minority group the problem dose not lay with them but the majority society to witch they belong. Other cultures have third gender categories, such as the Berdache in Native America, and the Hijra in India. Our culture teaches us to interpret bisexual feelings as "confusion," and to "resolve that confusion through neatly self-identifying ourselves as male, female heterosexual or homosexual etc" Kamin.L.J, (1990). These categories are to narrow.

Rose.S, Lewontin.R.C, Kamin.L.J, (1990), Biology, Idealogy and Human Nature, Not In Our Genes, Penguin Books, Harmondsworth

Mike Cardwell et al, psychology, 2nd Ed, 2000, Happer Collins, Hammersmith

Patriarchy, Structure and Gender Inequality

Walby (1990) reveals how patriarchy operates to

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