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Gender Equality


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#1 k_nitin_r

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 01:45 PM

People often wonder where the social roles of a man as the bread earner of the family and the woman as a home maker comes from. I recently looked up a grade one textbook for social studies, published by Vikranth Publishers in India, and I found the following:

Parents do many things for us
Father earns money for the family
Mother cooks food for us and also keeps the house neat and tidy


It is texts such as these that bring forward the question of gender equality. We still preach what men ought to do and what women ought to do and carve out their roles in society. Don't women deserve an equal opportunity in the workplace and don't men have any household responsibilities? Have you come across anything that creates or increases the gender gap?
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#2 BuffaloHelp

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 06:03 PM

I believe somewhere along the line, religion but not just religion itself, it's those who used "religion" or "in the name of god" to create supplemental laws to have dominance over females. It's the master-slave relationship. It's the god-mortal connection. And along the line men placed themselves equal to a god's level.

Whatever your religion may be I think we are all familiar with the role of man and woman because they are stated in respected religion's book. And the physical attributes of man further solidified what would be self-fulfilling prophecy: man are stronger thus they are better adapted for hunting and gathering food. And I'm thinking along the line it went something like this, "man are stronger thus will hunt and gather food and should rest for the next day's hunting. Therefore, woman will tender to man's needs to ensure survival."

Sounds pretty ridiculous, I know. So is the mentality that man are suppose to do this and woman are suppose to do this. When a culture is built on a belief that man is bread winner and woman is family nurturer, it's inevitable to pass down the formula that works to raise a successful family.

What it should have happened is that attributes that made each sex to be better at things should have been taught to "complement" the other and unite to create something better, like better family. Instead of focusing on each other's role there should have been the focus on role to bring better next generation. The role should have been established as the building block rather than the final result.

But, the phrase gender equality cannot comprise the whole aspect for all genders. Obviously man cannot give birth. A man can protest and cry to have equal in giving birth process but physically a man is incapable to do so. A woman cannot build up muscles to sustain physically enduring labor for the rest of her life. I'm not talking about some women who are strong, I'm talking about woman as whole. But a man can tougher physical work longer. You get the general idea.

So, in the age where hard physical labor is not necessary the main life sustaining means, "gender equality" questions the role which man and woman play. I believe, if man and woman were "raised" properly, then a man would come home, say hello to his wife, tell his kids he loves them, take out the trash, perhaps fix the squeaking door, help with meal menu, brings out plates and sit down with his family for a nice conversation and reflection. A woman would have started her day with her kids or go to work, pickup some grocery for later day's meal, show much affection to kids, teach them in subtle way about love and family, welcome her husband, sit down with her family for a nice conversation and reflection. It's not that each has specific duties through out the day but that whatever they may do it was all about bringing and enjoying as a family.

And the gender gap would not be as great as one might think because a man would be inclined to find a woman who is independent, strong yet able to work as a team in raising a family. A woman would also look for the same and participate in the same family establishment. The two would be aiming for the same goal. They may be divided in terms of contributing different components to complete the puzzle, but both happily contribute because they both want to obtain the same goal.

However, decades, centuries and millenniums of arrogance that man is this and woman is this... what you are end up is what you see today. Women are consistently paid less than men. Men are shoved into a role of working hard, earning the money to feed the family. While men are at work women are left with cooking, cleaning, raising children and tender to men from their hard days at work. Men must show little emotion to display tough exterior. Women must show tenderness. And goes on and on and on... While many have broke free from this stereotype it will be long before every one is free. But it's also misleading that breaking free from this stereotype is a good thing.

I believe everyone has a role to play in his or her life time. And finding the complementing opposite partner is part of playing this crucial role. Then maybe we can see some equality.
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#3 truefusion

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 08:25 PM

In either case, aren't we still declaring "what is best" for either? What is the point of gender equality?—you have to ask. True gender equality, doesn't that imply giving the very same tasks to each other? That doesn't necessarily imply complimenting each other, let alone something either would be glad to have. I'm pretty sure a lot of the things men do, women wouldn't want to do, and vice versa. Gender equality, i would say, then, is merely allowing for people to have their "options open;" give them a larger array of choices from what they currently have. One of the implications for gender equality is that what would follow would be more women in areas that they may otherwise would not have been in, and likewise for the men.

So assume that it is the case that both men and women are open to the same areas, the same array of choices. Would we see more women in more "manly" areas? And would we see more men in more "womanly" areas? The choice of where and what a person wants to work in is up to the person themselves. The rhetorics and emotions normally surrounding gender equality tend to be impractical—the only thing that is obviously practical about it is that it may actually turn heads. But they may actually place blame where blame is not appropriate.

So i hear that women earn less than men. I would understand the feeling to want to fight for more income if they were doing the same kind of work as the men, or if it were the case that women are being turned down at higher positions for being women. But i've never heard which position exactly they are currently in, what are their expertise and qualifications, and other relevant information that is required to even argue for gender equality.

Yeah, a house wife wouldn't have much time for higher forms of education—or other things for that matter—with children around, but, also, unless the working husband has had some form of higher education, his income won't be much. The complications surrounding the household do not, or should not, touch on gender equality. Those are things that need to be worked out by the family. Even with having the option, the current situation may not allow for higher forms of income. There are some things that can be fixed and there are some things that may never be fixed.

I haven't looked at anyone's paycheck (for why would they want to show me such a thing?), but what i can observe, at least here in the states, is that any reason for their income being low would be due to the kind of work they are doing. Sure, the topic introduced India, which i am not entirely sure of how things work, which may or may not have a law that says an employer cannot deny someone for gender, which may or may not be the case that India contains abortions that favor male babies. But i would rather do away with any misleading or deceiving information than to argue for it.
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#4 filmdesire

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 09:37 PM

People often wonder where the social roles of a man as the bread earner of the family and the woman as a home maker comes from. I recently looked up a grade one textbook for social studies, published by Vikranth Publishers in India, and I found the following:



It is texts such as these that bring forward the question of gender equality. We still preach what men ought to do and what women ought to do and carve out their roles in society. Don't women deserve an equal opportunity in the workplace and don't men have any household responsibilities? Have you come across anything that creates or increases the gender gap?


The text you quote builds the essence of familial sociology and social norm study, by quoting it like that, it will seem sexist. However it was probably sectioned under a specific example text to ensure that a basic understanding of 'dominant' ideologies are understood by the student before it is challenged in further study. This is how sociological studies work, by offering the views of many theorists, i.e. functionalists, (Durkheim), Maxism (Karl Marx), Feminism and many other theories including post modernism (Foucault).

You have to understand this way of study, to better your understanding of society rather than to confuse the student to begin with.

In regards to feminism and gender inequality, there are many strands to this argument, and many theorists (both male and female) all over the globe - yet mainly in the UK and USA - who argue the many corners of study.

IF you want to know more about this text, read it in its full context or pick up an encyclopaedia of Sociology and it will certainly harden your criticism or you may turn the other way and consider the reality of why gender inequality exists, especially if you widen your study, then you will realise that the route cause is not religion, but more culture, and new media practises.

All the best.
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#5 inverse_bloom

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 03:35 AM

In addition to sociology, social psychology looks at the topic at a much more finer level then the globally orientated sociology. In social psychology, one looks closely at issues such as this by looking at it in different perspectives. Examples of these are sociocultural, evolutionary, social learning, phenomenological and social cognitive.

People in this occupation go about their work in a scientific/detective like manner to discover the reasons behind why something is the way it is. They also research, observe, survey and conduct social experiments!

Although on the surface of things, sociocultural factors seem to be the biggest factor contributing to this topic. Inequalities for wages is one of the biggest issues here.

Edited by inverse_bloom, 03 January 2010 - 03:37 AM.

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#6 anwiii

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 04:59 AM

men and women are different by nature. although i believe in equality to a certain extent, to even talk about it is to discuss the results of gender euqlitiy FIRST! a lot of people take a stand for the pure fact that women should hold the same rights as men. it is wrong to be blinded and to limit discussion to that argement alone. there is such a think as family values and traditions. what happens when we are so caught up talking about what is wrong or right and even trying to fight for our own rights, other things in life become less important and misplaced.

i'm glad my mom quite her teaching job to raise her children and decided to be a full time mom. if this wasn't the case where my dad worked and my mom stayed home, my relationship with her would be totally different than it is today and that would be a shame. it would also be a shame if two parents were so busy that they didn't find the time to sit down and a dinner table with their whole family because they are too tired to cook at the end of the day.....or worse yet, have the children cook and eat on their own time.

the one thing i loved being raised in my own family environment was the fact that there was gender inequality and the man and the woman had totally different roles.

so i would suggest to anyone when they are trying to argue a fact that gender equality is a GOOD thing....think about what you take away just to gain that equality and determine if it really is worth it...

come on now....do we really have to be equal? we are called "men" and "women" for a reason.
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#7 harrison858

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 02:32 AM

Equality of rights is one thing. I believe that men and women should have the equal amount of right to their race, religion and social practices.

However, equality to the extent of roles in life are not logically possible. For one, different cultures have different roles for their gender. Maybe back in the day, men were off to war, and women stayed home all day cooking, cleaning and healing their injured soldiers, whatever.

Times are much different now, and both men and women have to work to make a living. To do their fair share.

Women DO need to take at least a little bit responsibility for finances. They're the ones shopping all the time, right?

And men DO need to take responsibility of at least a little bit of house chores, at least to the extent of keeping his own room clean, or something.
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#8 dangerdan

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 06:40 PM

I believe that gender equality should be absolute. Even in the UK today, men earn on average between 20-30% more than women, so even where there is equality of opportunity there is not equality of pay. The so called glass ceiling is still a pre-eminent idea in gender inequality. Very few women have reached the level of boardroom in the corporate ladder and this remains a problem. The coin can of course be flipped, where, for example, new fathers are not given the same paternity rights as women are maternity rights. This represents a distinct inequality of opportunity for men. Therefore I feel that these advantages and disadvantages of being either male or female should be removed, so that there is absolute equality of opportunity for men and women.

On the other hand, the roles of men and women are social constructs that have undergone essential conditioning throughout time immemorial, and this social construct is dynamic, complex and fluid - all concepts attached to culture, of which gender relations are a significant derivative - mean that it is ever evolving and changing.

Now I turn to the question posed by the thread starter about what can cause these change, or slow it down. The view of women in society is an absolutely key variable, if they are not seen as equal, then only inequality can follow. But even in a society where women are seen as equal, equality does not follow, therefore there must be further variables in the issue. The next most notable variable would be, conceptually, 'what was the view of women yesterday' (where yesterday is mathematically N-1 in a time series) and the relationship between these two variables would itself be a third, exogenous variable. Other, less significant, factors include the level of proliferation of women through the glass ceiling, Government policy (such as the Equal Pay Act in the UK) and fertility rates, which is more relevant to the developing world.
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#9 legend112

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Posted 19 February 2010 - 12:59 PM

I agree totally with gender equality.

I try to imagine it happening to me had I been born a woman without the power to change it. I think people should not be disadvantaged because of factors they cannot control. I do have my reservations on a few issues regarding this.

Women have been given rights to act totally of their own accord for the past 20 or so years and I think it's been very successful. We have women who are presidents now and more than anything, if someone has talent, its being recognized and their being given a change to make a good living and make their own decisions.

I have a problem with feminists. I think they have taken this battle too far and now its reached a stage where they are oppressing men and hiding behind the cover of gender equality. Feminists literally hate men and I think something has to be done since people are now equal more or less. Although its natural to see a housewife chilling at home when her husband is away at work, people still frown when they see a man who stays behind with the wife being the breadwinner. That needs explaining and I think we naturally have roles on this earth and people shouldn't try to change that too much.

But gender equality is good and we have achieved a lot!

I agree totally with gender equality.

I try to imagine it happening to me had I been born a woman without the power to change it. I think people should not be disadvantaged because of factors they cannot control. I do have my reservations on a few issues regarding this.

Women have been given rights to act totally of their own accord for the past 20 or so years and I think it's been very successful. We have women who are presidents now and more than anything, if someone has talent, its being recognized and their being given a change to make a good living and make their own decisions.

I have a problem with feminists. I think they have taken this battle too far and now its reached a stage where they are oppressing men and hiding behind the cover of gender equality. Feminists literally hate men and I think something has to be done since people are now equal more or less. Although its natural to see a housewife chilling at home when her husband is away at work, people still frown when they see a man who stays behind with the wife being the breadwinner. That needs explaining and I think we naturally have roles on this earth and people shouldn't try to change that too much.

But gender equality is good and we have achieved a lot!

I agree totally with gender equality.

I try to imagine it happening to me had I been born a woman without the power to change it. I think people should not be disadvantaged because of factors they cannot control. I do have my reservations on a few issues regarding this.

Women have been given rights to act totally of their own accord for the past 20 or so years and I think it's been very successful. We have women who are presidents now and more than anything, if someone has talent, its being recognized and their being given a change to make a good living and make their own decisions.

I have a problem with feminists. I think they have taken this battle too far and now its reached a stage where they are oppressing men and hiding behind the cover of gender equality. Feminists literally hate men and I think something has to be done since people are now equal more or less. Although its natural to see a housewife chilling at home when her husband is away at work, people still frown when they see a man who stays behind with the wife being the breadwinner. That needs explaining and I think we naturally have roles on this earth and people shouldn't try to change that too much.

But gender equality is good and we have achieved a lot!
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