Gender as Structure

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Gender as Structure In the reading Gender as Structure, Barbara J. Riseman argues that gender is a social structure that transcends through three different levels, at the individual level, the interactional level, and the institutional level. My understanding of the article is that each gender, whether it is male or female, is stuck in a certain role expectation that is influenced by their friends, family, and their culture. It is true that gender is something so simple that we do not always notice how much it affects are daily lives, cultural rules, and institutions. When growing up, on the individual level, we are socialized and separated into two groups, girls and boys. We are then treated differently, while the boys are tough and ridged with their fathers; little girls are tending to the house and the cooking with their mother. We are set into traditional values, which stay with us through out our lives we then pass our values on to our children like our parents have past their values down to us. On the interactional level, it is our primary group that influences our behaviors, actions, and impacts our values. We are set in to such traditional habits, that are taken as being normal and not for being something that is influenced by somebody else. It is shown in marriage through the pressure for a woman to provide domestic services to their husband and for a women to take their husbands last name. Through marriage though there is also equal pressure on the male to provide for their family, and to keep a decent job. In each case there is pressure for the couple to be accepted by their primary group, and to conform to the group’s ideas of what is right and wrong, separating the duties of each person by the sex of that person. At the institutional level, a man is sometimes paid more then a
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