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Week 4 (September 11-16) - Sex Roles

by: Ricardo Rauseo

Week 4 (September 11-16) - Sex Roles ANT3302

Marketplace > University of Florida > Anthropology > ANT3302 > Week 4 September 11 16 Sex Roles
Ricardo Rauseo
GPA 3.8

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About this Document

These notes cover what we saw on Week 4: Biological Constructs of Sex II - Beyond the Binary I
Sex Roles a Cross-Cultural Perspective
Amber Grafft-Weiss
Class Notes
sex, roles, Anthropology
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This 7 page Class Notes was uploaded by Ricardo Rauseo on Saturday September 17, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ANT3302 at University of Florida taught by Amber Grafft-Weiss in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 13 views. For similar materials see Sex Roles a Cross-Cultural Perspective in Anthropology at University of Florida.


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Date Created: 09/17/16
Monday, September 12, 2016 Recent thought: Evolution and the sexes Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence-Carl Sagan Man the Hunter Theory (1968)  Washburn and Lannister o Bipedalism soured up man’s bigger hunting exploits o Lead to tool development and use o Language for coordination of hunting strategy o Led to food sharing between sexes; which led to male female pairing and family structure o Slocum refuted; she said it said that women were useless and couldn’t do anything, didn’t acknowledge women’s work o The foraging half also involved development of language to avoid certain plants o Assumes that men are ambitious and aggressive, women are passive o If true, why would women develop and evolve simultaneously? Woman the gatherer theory (1975)  Slocum o Increased time for children with mother led to struggles obtaining food; nursing couldn’t be sole solution for subsistence o Noted that gathering of things that can’t fight back probably occurred first because safer o Mirror man the hunter theory o Says that the first tools were things like bathing sticks and carriages for children, or food storage materials o Issues: ignores hunting, should focus more on dealings of both activities; children can contribute earlier than she assumes; woman could also hunt; goes at underlying assumptions that men are aggressive and women are passive o Both try to address differences in a biological fashion o These theories are for early hominids Lovejoy’s Model of Human Evolution  R selection (think rats) o Many offspring o Low investment o Most die before maturity o Short life o Superficial relationships o Low individuality o Commodities  K Selection (humans) o Few offspring o High investment o Most mature o Long life o Rich relationships o High individuality o Brands  Said that we needed an increased birth rate; we’re producing too slowly  Women were less mobile because of childrearing so depended on men for food and resources  Increased competition among males for women  Estrous when animals are ready for fertilization; are in heat; ovulation  Women lost this ability; could produce offspring year round which led to relationships  Issues: page 116 Selfish Genes  Dawkins o Males pass on genes by spreading seed to as many women as possible o Women can only have one partner at a time because of investment in offspring o This leads to differential behavior o Version of theory: sociobiology; because women only have one reproductive cell at a time and men have tons, they are going to only have one partner and men can have many Sociobiology  E.O. Wilson o The systematic study of the biological basis of all social behavior o Problems: genetic determinism no other influence on who I am; biology is our destiny; no flexibility or variation; by stating this, relies on assumptions of evolution and genetics that cannot be tested (example of extraordinary claim needs extraordinary evidence) o Looks like hard science; trying to incorporate hard science principles Evolutionary Psychology  Theoretical approach to the study of mind and behavior that attempts to explain cognitive mechanisms as the functional products of natural selection  Dangerous Directions: o Evolution explains rape A natural history of rape  Thornhill and Palmer assert that the phenomenon of rape evolved due to the biological urge by human males to reproduce  Thought that by understanding these foundations that could lead to less rape  Wrong: men rape men which is not reproductive based; people passed reproductive age are victims; little kids can be raped; male scorpion fly uses clamp to reproduce with female  Criticism: if it is evolution can we even fight it o Trait exists for a purpose  Human Behavioral Ecology o Branch of evolutionary psychology o Attempts to explain behavioral diversity as a consequence of environmentally contingent responses made by individuals in attempts to survive and successfully reproduce o Disinterested in genetics roles play o Polygyny Threshold: idea that a culture’s system of mating and marriage is informed by the degree of resource control of each sex  Problem is, it assumes greater degree of reproductive choice in a simplistic way o Explaining the unfamiliar  Alternative configurations of biological sex and sexual orientation  Homosexuality is a trait that is biological and cannot be oppressed Freud  Bisexuality and sexual determinism  Sexual orientation isn’t innate  Everyone is bisexual in orientation and traits that we assign to either sex; everyone has a bit of both  Explained that homosexuality results from a distressing experience with heterosexuality; once it is inverted then it cannot be reversed  Recently studies have been done to look at brain and homosexuality o Hormones, twins o Some studies have found that men who are gay tend to have higher levels of testosterone and are actually more “masculine” compared to straight men The gendered brain  Historically o Differences in brain size by race, sex, ethnicity  Currently o Differences between left & right hemisphere o Differences in tissue connecting hemispheres o Using different paths through brain for a same function  No scientific findings in these claims Wednesday, September 14, 2016 Outside the Binary: Sex & Gender on a Spectrum Non-binary biological sex  Intersex (n): term used for various conditions in which a person is born with reproductive or sexual anatomy that does not fit the typical definitions of male or female  Is not always have 2 sets of sexual organs but infertility or Sexual Orientation Terms  Pansexual (adj): describes an individual who can experience sexual attraction, romantic love, or emotional attraction towards people of ant sex or gender identity  Asexual (adj): describes an individual who lacks sexual attraction to anyone or has low or no interest in sexual activity Gender Identity Terms  Gender identity: one’s innermost concept of self as male or female, or neither, or both.  Transsexual: older term originating in the medical and psychological communities, and still preferred by some people who have permanently changed (or seek to permanently change) their bodies through medical interventions.  Transgender: Term describing people whose gender identity and/or gender expression differs from the one typically associated with the sex they were assigned at birth  Cisgender: term describing people whose gender identity and/or gender expression is consistent with that typically associated with the sex they were assigned at birth Foundations of the Binary  Gender binary: classification of sex and gender into two distinct opposite and disconnected forms of masculine and feminine Ancient Greece and Rome  Sex and power in the ancient world (Western European edition) o Sexuality wasn’t that binary; their binary was based on a power balance adult males were focused on power o Defined by the male being the inserter, the receptor role could be played by woman or younger less powerful men o Had a feminizing effect in the receptor male, only costly to him not the penetrator o Woman engaging in similar sexual activity were a little invisible The Middle Ages  Christianity imposes strict laws on same sex activity  1300: punishable by death  Continues for the next 3 centuries Foundations of the binary: 16 THand 17 THCenturies  Men, women and intersex were recognized  Intersex could change their gender at will and take on the sexual partner that was appropriate  The receptors are still feminized, penetrators survive in some parts  Queen Christina of Swedengiven male education because wanted to remain celibate 19 Century developments  And then there were two  U.S. homosexuality is illegal o Through the adoption of anti-gay laws (state laws, still not federal)  Sometimes the hermaphroditism was recognized  Started to use biology to explain things Early to Mid-20 century  Freud’s idea of “sexual inversion” takes hold  Took hold even though homosexual individuals disputed it  1917 Immigration billNot allowed to enterHomosexuals because of mental defect  1990Homosexual term was retired from the “mental defect list”They are allowed to enter the country Mid to late-20 century  Gays unwelcome in certain establishments  1969Stonewall riots: Police raided Stonewall Inn, and attacked visibly identifiable non-heterosexuals  People and activists started to organize to ask for safe spaces for the LGBTQ community Where Are We Now?  Gay men earn up to 32% less than their straight counterparts  5.9% of the population as a whole makes less than 10,000 a year. For LGBT people in particular, that rate is around 14%  LGBT youth are more likely to become homeless. 20-40% of homeless teens identify as LGBT  In 2014: o Hate-motivated violence against LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities dropped 32% compared with 2013 but o Hate-motivated violence specifically against transgender people rose 13% o 20 such incidents of homicide:  16 to 20 were people of color  11 of 20 were transgender women of color o 54% of victims of such hate crimes reported to police (up to 45%). Of those, 27% reported hostile treatment by police upon reporting o Only 6% of crimes classified as bias crimes by the national coalition of anti-violence programs were classified as such by police  In 2015, at least 19 transgender people have been murdered in the U.S.


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