Gender Role Socialization

1103 Words5 Pages
In this essay, I will define and discuss gender-role socialization. I will also explain how the various dimensions of the masculine role and the feminine role can lead to role conflict. I will also discuss the relationship between traditional gender-role socialization and the violence against women, specifically wife abuse. Gender-role socialization is the life-long process by which women and men learn behaviors expected of them in a given society. For example, in the U.S. society males are traditionally expected to demonstrate aggressiveness and toughness, whereas females are expected to be passive and nurturing. There are a lot of dimensions to gender-role socialization, sexism for instance. Sexism is the subordination of one sex, usually the female, based on the assumed superiority of the other sex. Sexism directed at women has three components: (1) negative attitudes toward women; (2) stereo typical beliefs that reinforce, complement, or justify the prejudice; and (3) discrimination- acts that exclude, distance, or keep women separate. Women are more often target of sexism; men can be victims of sexist assumptions. Examples of sexism directed against men are the assumption that men should not be employed in certain female dominated occupations, such as a nurse or elementary school teacher. The belief is that somehow more harmful for families when female soldiers are killed in battle than male soldiers. Sexism is interwoven with patriarchy- a hierarchical system of social organization in which men control cultural, political and economic structures. By contrast, matriarchy is the hierarchical system of social organization in which women control cultural political and economic structures; however few (if any) societies have been organized in this manner. Patriarchy is reflected in the way that men may think of their position as means as a given.
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