Gendered World Views (Winter 2017, section 11)
About this class
Pink is for girls and blue is for boys, or at least that's what many of us were taught as children. But what are these stereotypes really telling us? Assumptions like these force men and women into specific roles, and from a very young age, we socialize boys to be aggressive and girls to be nice – we then assign an aesthetic to each group that reflects this. But how do real people deal with these expectations? What does it mean to see the world through gendered terms?
This course will introduce students to the patriarchal world view that created the gendered stereotypes we live with today and the ways in which gendered assumptions structure society. We will then focus on the challenges that have been raised by the feminist world view and explore how women deal with gender inequality. The second half of the course will be largely dedicated to masculinity studies and feminist observations regarding how the patriarchal world view hurts men as well. Finally, we will end with a brief look at what queer theory has to say about gender. Students will be asked to reflect on their own world views and how gendered ideas have effected their lives. A participation grade will be assigned.
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First I would like to say that this is a great and important topic that you chose! I agree that it does not receive enough attention considering the number of people that suffer everyday from it.
I would like to suggest that by looking through a gendered lens as well it might help to explain and give a different perspective on why some people suffer from different mental illnesses and what could have caused it in the first place. If looking specifically at men, we see that society requires them to engage in stoicism, being reasoned, calm, and not showing any emotion or passion what so ever since it is classified as feminine and weak and they are taught to be tough, self-reliant, and to manage and hide their pain. The problem with this is that 1) men too are affected from the expectations set by society which requires them to conform to hegemonic masculinity and 2) expecting them to be stoic during this whole process can be demanding to their emotional health as well as their physical health. Stoicism might be the driving force behind a variety of destructive male behavior as well.
Therefore we can see that some cases of men suffering from anxiety, depression and many other mental disorders can be derived back to stoicism. Men are less likely to seek help causing the problem to go unresolved and can even worsen.
Once again I like that you brought up this topic and I hope this gendered perspective helped explain why some men suffer from mental disorders!
Here is a link that might interest you concerning masculinity and male anxiety:
In all forms of entertainment, men seems to be linked with violence as they should always be carrying this trait. I find it very interesting to address this problem using a movie that most of us know as example, and making others realize how bizarre it is. In fact, in this movie as well as a lot of other ones, there is only one kind of masculinity which is celebrated-- what you referred as “hyper-masculinity”, and I will refer to it with the term hegemonic masculinity, which promotes male dominance. Hegemonic masculinity from a patriarchal world view is the image that all men should try to embody; it is basically an individual respecting all criterion from the man box (which are terms such as strength, virility, stoicism, everything which patriarchal world view promotes and sets this unrealistic ad even racist ideal image of a man). Do you know what promoting this kind of masculinity can even be “toxic” and cause real harm to male gendered people? Have you noticed that “be a man!” is something often said to to (especially) a young boy? Even nowadays when society is “becoming very acceptable”, parents, coachs, teachers and even friends are still policing men to fit into an image of masculinity. This phenomenon is the reason behind the high rates of suicide of young compared to women, and a reason why most violence cases are committed by men. Unable to achieve this image, they turn to “violence”, which is also a term in the man box. This whole concept is called toxic masculinity, and here’s an article about the suicide rate for men if you are interested: http://www.bcmj.org/articles/silent-epidemic-male-suicide .
Great post! I enjoyed reading and I agree with your opinions on censorship. It is scary to think that there are forms of extreme censorship where people’s freedom of expression is restricted. We as a society are meant to move forward as a whole, not backwards by limiting people's opinions. I believe publicizing and revealing the identity of illegal site users will partially be benefitting but will not eliminate illegal online activity as a whole. Individuals who are involved with these sites will continuously find another route to attain what they want.
From a gendered perspective, feminism today, seems to be largely connected by technology and social media. The internet has become a space for social activism and an important outlet in bringing gender equality and social justice issues to light. Although the internet has served in the increase exposure and acceptance of feminism, women repeatedly experience online hate, threat and harassment by not only men but women as well. For example, online feminists will subject “non stereotypical” feminists to hate and online criticism. Additionally, the #gamergate movement has wrongly targeted women such as Zoe Quinn and Anita Sarkeesian for gaining popularity in a male dominant industry. Gamergate followers victimized these women by doxing, (the exposure of private information online), sending rape threats and death threats. It is a misogynistic movement where members perceive successful women as an attack to a dominantly patriarchal field. Censorship of privacy in the situation of Sarkeesian and Quinn would therefore be beneficial for the protection of women. But, the underlying reason why women need this additional protection is because of the patriarchal lens some individuals are confined to. The sexist ideology that women are secondary to men therefore needs to be changed in order for privacy protection to be a success.
Heres a link to additional information about feminism online !
First things first, the choice of your tittle really caught my attention considering this is a whole new and interesting subject for me. Before reading this text, I had never heard of genetic engineering before. The structure of your essay and all the sources you used to conduct it really made it easy for me to understand the essence of this topic and your ethical view regarding the genetic modification of human beings. While considering the benefits from this subject, I still disagree about the fact that this genetic manipulation can do more good than bad. In fact, this whole process of manipulating and modifying human being is expensive:
“Actually implanting and developing an embryo from there would be even more expensive” (Loria). Putting aside the price subject and seeing this manipulation through gendered world view lens, we can also observe that it adds more pressure on men and women’s view of the ideal body. Since some people are able to change their appearance in order to feel better about themselves, viewing these people will make others desire this “perfect” image and put more pressure on themselves to look like them.
Moreover, the fact that not everyone can have access to this technology will affect an enormous amount of men. There are four tropes related to hegemonic masculinity: Violence, Sexuality, Power and Stoicism. This same hegemonic masculinity requires men to hold power. The financial freedom a man has is often correlated with the power he holds. Consequently, the inability to afford this genetic manipulation can lead some men to feel or consider themselves not powerful enough. This phenomenon can further lead a fair amount of men to low self-esteem and depression. In conclusion, not only will this process influence some men and women to put more pressure on themselves, it will also put men who can’t afford it in a much deeper devaluation of themselves.
Here is the link to the article relating to the price and another article to further understand men’s situation:
Your article on mainstream marketing and advertising is certainly an interesting one. It was especially compelling when you discussed the problems with a marketer’s willful ignorance of accepted ethics and morals. I am in accordance with your belief that tricking and misleading innocent consumers to turn a profit is objectionable behavior.
Yet, I do believe that analyzing the issue of marketing through a gendered lens will enhance your already compelling examples and arguments. To effectively incorporate gender into your article, you must understand the distinction between gender and sex. Sex is your biological designation as either male, female or intersex. Gender, conversely, is a social construct, an idea that was artificially created by humans, that dictates how members of a certain sex are supposed to behave. Ultimately, gender is a performance.
Unfortunately, in contemporary society, most forms of media, advertisements included, propagate concealed or overt messages about the performance of gender. The portrayal of men in advertisements present themes of dominance, virility, and stoicism, while the portrayal of women evokes motifs of submission and sexuality. These persistent messages influence men and women in a major way. Specifically, advertisements often promote rape culture, a society that trivializes the act of rape, by objectifying women and normalizing violence against women.
I strongly encourage you to strengthen the examples provided in your article by touching on problematic advertisements with gendered messages. You will find them in abundance with a quick Google search. Furthermore, I implore you to discuss the promotion of rape culture in modern marketing as it directly overlaps with the subject matter that your article focuses on. You touch on “before and after” pictures, a perfect opportunity to discuss the objectification and hyper-sexualization of women. Before potentially revising your article, I strongly recommend that you further research gender issues and rape culture. I have linked below a few articles to get you started and I hope that you branch out from there.
Hi. Your article is very informative and it brings attention to the serious problem of unemployment and its impact on society. However, I think it could lead to a deeper analysis of the problem if we consider the role of gender with this problem.
For example, you mentioned the psychological impact that unemployment has on an individual. Of course both genders would be affected. However, it might be more serious for men considering their masculinity depends on financial wealth and success. The man-box of the patriarchal world view polices men into being successful and rich and when this criterion isn't met, they are policed and criticized. For further information on men and masculinity you can visit this site: http://www.wps.colostate.edu/men-and-masculinities
Another point that the gendered world views brings up is the issue of women's expected role in society. Women are expected to be the house-wives who take care of the children. So they tend to have more difficulties in obtaining a job because they are expected to quit once they have children. Even once they are professionally engaged, when they have children they are forced to choose between either their children or their professional career. This phenomenon is called the "Mommy Track." The rates of unemployment are much bigger in women due to this issue. For further information on mommy track you can visit this site: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mommy_track
Your article is very well written and pertinently addresses the disturbing reality that random shootings are on the rise and have become part of the American culture in today’s society as suggested by your expert criminologist. Even more disturbing is how American society has become complacent and accepts this uncontrollable violence as normal. While I am an avid supporter of increasing social programs that target health care and job insurance, I disagree with your rationale that this will solve the rampant violence. I believe that discussing the concept of violent masculinity and socialization of boys in today’s society will provide insight into why 80.4% of perpetrators arrested for these horrendous, violent crimes are men (US Dept. of Justice). The Patriarchal worldview stresses that men are to be: dominant, powerful, and virile and must embody these attributes in order to be considered “real men”, we see this message in films, violent video games, and advertising. Men, of all ages, perform this duty by conformance to the guidelines of the “man box” which outlines the four tropes of hegemonic masculinity: violence, power, sexuality and stoicism. This modern masculinity encourages men to be violent (in actions and words) not only towards women (seen as sexual objects) but towards “weaker members” of society in their quest to claw their way towards success. This male socialization begins at a very young age “Be a man”, “Big boys don’t cry”; this message teaches boys that showing emotion is considered feminine and weak and should be avoided otherwise their masculinity will be questioned. It should be no surprise that this socialization leads boys to becoming men that are emotionally inept and violent. As a society we must steer away from this hegemonic masculinity through education. Exposing the destructive consequences of the “man box” will encourage men to express their vulnerabilities without social stigma, before these men reach their breaking point and define themselves through violent crimes.
Some interesting articles to further your understanding:
I really enjoyed the honesty of your article, it gave the reader a real glimpse at what
homosexual men in less developed have to deal with. The fact that you included the full article
on this story made your analysis much stronger because the reader can see information about
this issue in detail.
It may be helpful to look at the issue of homosexual men’s human rights being violated
from a gendered perspective. In your article there is a theme that you touch upon very often,
people seem to be afraid of homosexuality. the government and society in Africa seems to be
afraid of emasculation of their male population. The term hegemonic masculinity illustrates this
idea perfectly, hegemonic masculinity promotes male dominance and obeying the “man box”.
This type of masculinity tells men to be everything women are not. This very popular idea of
how men should act explains why the fear of homosexuality is there. The fact that being
homosexual man is so closely associated with being female causes this type of harm.
It might be helpful to read this article from Colorado State University
http://www.wps.colostate.edu/men-and-masculinities . This article gives a further explanation of
the man box as well as more detail on hegemonic masculinity.
You have obviously demonstrated your understanding of the topic. I like how you included some pertinent statistics since they really proved the gravity of the subject and helped prove your point. Furthermore, the fact that you included a real example helped the reader understand explicitly how indigenous women are treated.
To further strengthen your argument, I would consider explaining intersectionality more in depth and exactly how this concept relates to the numerous disappearances and murders of indigenous women and how their cases are treated. Intersectionality describes the overlapping and reinforcement of different systems of oppression, inequality, or discrimination. A few reasons why we sometimes oppress beyond gender are race, sexual orientation, class, age, religion, etc. This concept was developed by third-wave feminists and proves that all women do not struggle against the same kinds of oppression or feel it in the same way contrarily to what traditional feminists claimed. In this case, indigenous women show how race and gender intersect creating serious issues. Whilst the fights of indigenous women are related to ongoing feminist struggles within other racially marginalized groups, they are not the same. A crucial aspect of indigenous activism includes the fight for self-determination and recognition. Indigenous people around the world are fighting to maintain control over their identities, cultures, and ancestral land, a struggle that is integral to many indigenous women. Furthermore, a white woman generally does not have to worry about healthcare and other services being accessible to them. Here is a paper that analyses how indigeneity intersects with cultural marginalization and violence: https://www.lakeheadu.ca/sites/default/files/uploads/92/An%20Intersectio.... To sum it up, sexism isn't the only force of discrimination so we need to consider the many markers when determining how much bigotry they suffer from. Recognizing the complexity of female experiences is critical to avoid generalizing them as the same for everyone.
This was a very informative text on homelessness and the disciplines related to it. Unfortunately homelessness is extremely common, and there are certain demographics that are more at risk of living on the streets than others. This can be related to the term intersectionality, which can be defined as the overlapping of a person’s identities that give them either more or less advantage compared to others. In regards to homelessness, intersectionality plays an important role in determining how at risk a person is to become homeless; it also can help predict whether or not a homeless person will struggle to improve their living standards. For example, an older man from a lower economic background will be much more likely to become homeless for a long period of time than a middle-aged white man from a middle or upper class family. Women on the other hand tend to find a home more quickly, however they are more at risk of sexual assault and verbal abuse. Their race, age, and economic background also play a part in determining their chances of living on the streets. If you wish to verify my facts or learn more about intersectionality and homelessness, you can do so here: http://www.tcs.cam.ac.uk/features/0036999-the-long-read-intersectional-h....
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