The Influence Of Society On Gender

683 words - 3 pages

The Influence of Society on Gender

The term gender can be defined as the characteristics by which people determine if their classification is to be male or female. Gender role expectations are things that a society deems normal and acceptable behavior, attitudes, and desires for a person. The question as to weather or not society influences the gender of a person or if it is an innate tendency. This age old nature versus nurture question has been answered by science many times for many years. I came across an article in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine published in 1997. The article told of how a child if born male but with rudimentary development of his sex organs can easily be transitioned into a "female" person. Sometimes it can happen with out the knowledge of the parents or anyone else in society including the child. It told how children with an especially underdeveloped penis would not have large enough levels of testosterone during puberty to change his "female appearance" if that is how the child was reared. This and many other such articles provide strong support that conventional patterns of masculine and feminine behavior can be altered. The text discussed the fact that in certain societies depending on the mindset of its people and the nature of their economy there may or may not be a huge gap in gender roles. In western countries gender roles are constantly being challenged. There are stay at home dads, male receptionist, female doctors and judges.
Genes refer to our basic unit of heredity. In the chapter it is stated that everything social and psychological is ultimately biological. As it pertains to gender roles it draws our attention to facts like the differences in our average height and body mass. My interpretation of this part of our chapter is that , because males have taken on the...

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