• I think they are inherent.
  • Fot the most part they are unless it comes to sex then that's nature. When you take people and raise them with no social ideals on gender roles for the most part they become neutral.
  • People like to think they are. That's where "stereotypes" come from. I think that we're breaking most of those down by now... or at least I'd LIKE to think that.
  • Maybe. Let me consult the knitting circle and get back to you :)
  • I wholehearted beleive that gender roles are constructed. this begins from such a young age, giving a male child a car or an action figure whilst a young female will be given dolls or toy kitchen utensils and plates. Gender is performed. It is what we do each and every day to express ourselves.
  • No. I know that they are. If they were inherent in humans; then, gender roles wouldn't vary by culture. In fact, they do. Increased contact and communication between cultures has all but eliminated such societies, but we have documentation of them. Some can still be found in tribal regions of the world.
  • Yes. They are also inherently discriminatory (in the negative sense). Think about the licence given in the phrase 'boys will be boys'.
  • It is mostly inborn. Only superficial aspects are culturally determined. There are biological differences between the genders, as well as mental and emotional diferences. Male and female children are not exactly the same- if they were, there would be no such thing as transgendered people, and no controversy about surgical procedures on intersex children. There have been many cases where intersex newborns were simply "made into" girls because it's easier to make a vagina than a penis. This has also happened when there were accidents during circumcision of boys that could not be repaired. The children were given to their parents to raise- as a girl. They were given pink frilly dresses and dolls to play with. That just does not take. Instead they become "tomboys", and later self-identify as lesbians, or transgendered. When in reality they are straight males with mutilated penises and don't find out about it till they grow up. If the differences between men and women were entirely culturally determined, then this would not happen. Also, there would be no such thing as transgendered people. The fact that there are little boys who want to be girls even though they were raised to be little boys shows there is a lot more to gender differences than how we are raised.
  • Yes, throughout history society has dictated this. I will give a historical overview of just two ways it which this has occurred. In the beginning of American history, when Native Americans, Europeans, and African women were just beginning to live on this continent at the same time, Native American Women were extremely prominent. They were head of tribes, spiritual leaders, and well respected. African women were considered to be lower than domesticated animals. Their babies were taken from them, they were abused by both white and black, and they were considered a commodity not a human being. Through the changes that society has made Native American women although more prominent today, there was a point around the turn of the 20th century when they were considered to be of no importance. Today African American Women have reached a pentacle that has never excised in this country’s history. They have become Professors, CEO’s, Doctors, lawyers, and Secretary of State. They are many more examples, but this demonstrates how society has been influences and how gender has influenced society. I would like to add (I am a Native American Male just incased you are wondering), that the Africa American Woman did this without protest, without marches, without screaming and shouting. They accomplished this through their perseverance, tenacity, and quiet struggle. The number one way in which they achieved such a turn around was through education, not through protests. The only protest was the one they held in the heart and mind. Conndi for President.
  • Oh Yes! If not there would be no fear for males to wear female clothing or feminine attire, like heels or nylons or pantyhose or skirts etc. What's the big deal? it's clothing! Fabrics! I say enjoy the diversity and allow others to live without fear of persecution and ridicule so they may live contented to be as they want!
  • I think that gender roles begin as growing out of convenience and become constructs of society. One influences and changes the other. The important biological differences in men and women lead to differences in lifestyle, which evolve over time into separate spheres that vary greatly from one culture to another, and from one era to the next.
  • o0o fantastic question. No, i think gender roles are constructed in a number of ways with social interaction being the highest. For the ease of my answer i will mostly restrict my examples to women. Primary socialisation, that of the home, will first effect a child. A girl seeing how her mother acts around the home, how her father may treat her differently from her brothers etc. I remeber a documentry from when i was younger about male/female learning styles where a mother had attempted to bring up her children nutrally giving her daughter both action man and building blocks alongside barbie. She did the same with her son. The children both prefered to play with their gender speific toys. Which was put down to social conditioning outside of the home. Ie. secondary socialisation. that of the school and society. Media also plays a part, after being conditioned to read Girl talk from a young age, the magazine then blasted pictures of fluffy kittens at me, girly gossip about how to do my hair etc. As i got older these magazines were "how to attract your man" and so on. And so secondary socialisation is renforced by the media and vica versa. Going back to the Male/Female learning styles. Within this documentry (BBC I think) it was recongised that there were fundimental differences between the sexes, women learn oraly- but not just because of a form of conditioning but because men's hearing was inferiour to that of women. And so women were more likly to work in social groups. Women due to having more higly tuned hearing could also spot inflections in someones voice more clearly alowing them to tell if somone was distressed etc. Men on the other hand were able to solve 3D puzzles much more effectivly to women, as they processed them in a different way. Men can also see things in more detail and see in tunnel vision in comparason to women, they also see further on average. women have a broader scope of vision but do not see in as much detail perhaps lending to the "look at the bigger picture" view. without the gender roles that are constructed in todays society i belive that the fundimental differences in men and women would mean that theses gender roles would still exist to some extent, perhaps not as inflicted, broad or constraining as those of society and more prone to personal choice but things like mens ability to solve problems and see in more detail would mean that due to his natural strengths he would want to be an engener and due to womens ablity to talk through problems etc she would want a caring role in society. Despite this many men and women do not conform so strictly to theses roles and so social conditioning leads them to stray from what they may be more apt at performing. sorry if this made no sense
  • To some degree. But all you need to do is look at the gender roles that are very near universal among cultures for a very good list of non-socially constructed candidates.
  • For the most part, yes. Most of the characteristics that we come to associate with gender are social constructs that have no rational or biological root. While there are some innate differences between men and women generally, there is nothing about those innate differences that requires a particular culture's response to those differences, or to a particular culture's receptiveness to variations from the general norm.
  • There's a big difference between sex (female vs male) and gender (woman vs man). Sex is completely concrete and gender is completely socially constructed. It is not necessary to cling to these constructs, and I think most people would agree. Every person is an entity, going far beyond such constraints as gender, etc, which explains why most people are not polar women or polar men (somewhere in the middle).
  • Consider they vary over time and from place to place, most definitely.
  • Definitely. I won't waste your time repeating what every other great answer has already said. Good question :)
  • If that was true then a woman's arms would not be formed to hold a baby....where a man's are not. A man's arms would not be formed for strength and endurance where a woman's are not, And that is just one part of the body. Then there is the mind and emotions. Look at the entire picture....from the beginning of time. People who fight against what they really are.. in my opinion, have lost their perspective, know little about themselves and have allowed their minds to be carried away by delusional thinking.
  • All of them? No, but most of them. Certainly more of them are socially constructed than biologically necessary. Some of the socially constructed roles are quite valuable and make quite a bit of sense, but we should be aware of what is socially constructed, and examine whether it's necessary from time to time. If a role is socially constructed, but doesn't serve a useful purpose, why keep it?
  • Of course. Another way to control people and keep them from reaching their full potential. Churches are really good at that...hate women in power

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