Development of Women's Sex Roles
According to the writer John Berger had it that men normally act whereas women appear. Another writer, by the name Andrea Dworkin said that the most appropriate way to distinguish between men is that men are much committed to committing evil other than being victimized by it. All given radical religious and also the political movements tend to lack balance and normally appear blind when it is a question of what is practical, possible and/or whatever appears reasonable. Figure 1The existing radical women’s lib movement that commenced in the late 1960’s was and till to date trapped in this certain mindset. Apparently in this given case feminism is not the one being discussed about, the issue is about radical women’s lib movement. This group has in the last approximated three decades propagated on the existing traditional sex roles and this has gone up to a point of denying the legitimacy of the sex roles. Taking into consideration an example of the year 1935, Margaret Mead made an attempt to write regarding the need for much freer sex roles. According to Margaret, women ought to at least get involved in those activities that are usually associated with men. Still there were others who wrote before her and they called for more freedom from the practiced sex role stereotypes. Apparently the sex role stereotypes are in one way or the other related to ones expectations with regard to the behavior of males or females; normally men tend to work outside the home, besides the fact that they handle the heavy work, fighting wars and even dominating most if not all the spatial ability jobs (mathematicians, Engineers, Architects among others).
Apparently men are still the ones who normally are in control of the most powerful institutions while women are assigned with the responsibility of bearing and nursing babies, caring for the young ones, working near or in their respective homes, attend to the house chores including cooking among other responsibilities. It is still notable that incase women work outside their homes, they tend to work in more occupations that deal with children and interrelationships between individuals. It can generally be concluded that men work mostly outside their homes and they mostly assist in provision of the requirements into their families while their counterparts women are expected to stay near or at least at their homes and take care of the children and also to make sure that work near or at their houses.
Considering the last couple of decades, sex roles can be said to have been successfully challenged. Not are the women who work outside the home but most of the working women have children, all thanks to: Radical women’s lib movement, the need for corporation to have access to much more cheap labor and lastly the helping domestic oriented devices such as dish and cloth washers. The conclusion is that there have been some notable changes in sex roles. The fact that women not only bare and take care of their children but also worked outside their given homes has ultimately liberated women. The movement’s success was the reasoning as to why in just over two decades most of the women were working outside their outside their homes as well as in their homes. In the year 1990, only 18% of the existing women having children under the age 18 were not working outside their homes .
Still one ought to know that men and women are different not only in anatomy, but also in terms of the way they behave and in the interests they tend to express. Particular behavioral variations are normally believed to be biologically determined. A good example is the male sex hormone testosterone which is believed to be the possible explanation behind the consideration that males tend to be more aggressive compared to the females. Nevertheless many non-anatomical differences that seem to be based on sex roles that are usually learned by each and every individual. Otherwise it can be concluded that people are normally born male or female but then they are taught on how to be either masculine or feminine.
Roles can be defined as sets of norms that are meant to identify the way people in a particular social position need to conduct themselves. For example there are those people who have a particular occupation and they are normally subjected to an existing set of expectations pertaining to the worked performed and the particular style in which it is accomplished. While an individual might anticipate a mechanic’s soiled appearance, the same appearance would just be considered unsanitary and even unprofessional for a dentist. Unlike specific roles that are based on occupations (the likes of teachers and fire fighters), or the family relationships (e.g. son, mother), sex roles can hence be said to be diffuse considering the fact that concern virtually all individuals and then normally apply to all parts of one’s daily life. Therefore it is quite imperative to comprehend why a little girl practices a typically feminine sex role, that is caring for an infant hence how each one of us learns on their given sex role and the tied up significance in one’s life. For example one can consider the Barbie case, whereby the writer’s son wanted to dedicate a Barbie to his sister amid celebration of her sixteenth birthday. The writer tries to describe the Barbie’s appearance and that it had long hair and it was dressed in a skirt. All these tries to point out how ever since the girl was young, she had adapted the life course and this predicts or rather shows that the girl was prepared to take care of a young when time comes.
In the real sense it can be reasoned that a sex-role concept is a given set of shared expectations that individuals tend to hold about the existing characteristics suitable for people on the basis of their given gender. Apparently peoples’ notion regarding these given roles that are shared normally imply that most of the people tend to endorse the likely behaviors as most appropriate for both men and women. Each individual has a belief on how males or females normally do and ought to do. Consider this case, in most homes, who is normally assigned with the task of sending the greeting cards to associates, buying of gifts, remembering nieces’ birthdays, organizing parties, preparing meals and keeping in touch with the extended family members? Apparently one ought to be thinking of a woman as the above activities are normally considered part and parcel of the woman’s role in most of the cultures .
There exists no direct relationship between the biological sex and several social aspects of the existing sex roles. In accordance to the same, psychologists have suggested that the term sex be applied to designate biological maleness/femaleness. It has been contrasted by the term gender role which highlight on the basic notions regarding to masculinity and femininity. It is noteworthy that much of what is considered as masculine and feminine is normally learned owing to experiences tied up with socialization. Regarding the women’s’ issue that they are the ones to remember birthdays and send the greeting cards is not a biological necessity. It is rather simply a cultural expectation that just gets passed from a generation to generation. Another case is the Kibbutz, just like M.E. Spiro, the author of ‘Kibbutz: Venture in Utopia’ had it that one of the problems with the women in the Kibbutz is that they tend to have a poor morale. It was ultimately researched that one source of the woman’s morale is the fact that many women tend to appear dissatisfied with their given economic roles. Just like men, women worked in the tough fields and drove tractors; on the other hand, men just like their counterparts the women worked in the kitchen and in the laundry. Figure 2There was the assumption that men and women were equal and could perform jobs equally well. Later it was discovered that men and women were not the same and hence could not perform jobs equally well. For well known obvious biological reasons, women were not in a position to handle some of the physical tasks of which men had no issues when handling them; driving tractors, harvesting and other various heavy labors proved quite impossible to the women though men could do them without much problems. Moreover women were sometimes forced to take a temporary leave from that given physical labor of which they could handle. Take for example a pregnant woman who could not even do even the slightest job in the vegetable garden and another nursing mother who had to work near the Infants House in order to meet the requirement of feeding the child. It can hence be said that the Kibbutz grew older and still the birth rate raised and hence many more women were forced to leave the “productive” branches, apparently it proved quite necessary that their places be filled and actually they had to be filled by men. The most surprising thing was that the women found themselves in the same jobs from they were supposed to have been emancipated; teaching, cooking, laundering, cleaning and caring for the young ones.