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Gender Roles

by: Savannah Mahalak

Gender Roles

Savannah Mahalak


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What roles men and women play in different cultures
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Savannah Mahalak on Monday October 3, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to at Georgia Southern University taught by in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 55 views.


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Date Created: 10/03/16
Tuesday, October 4, y Gender Roles Etoro of Papua, New Guinea ­ Hunting and small­scale farming ­ Ritual homosexuality for males ­ Young men assigned to older male partners Gender Roles ­ How are men and women perceived in the U.S.? ­ Females: caring, emotional, family oriented, physically fragile, social ­ Males: selfish, rational, individualistic, tolerant of pain Cultural Universals ­ Marriage between a man and women ­ Incest Taboo Marriage ­ Almost universally viewed as the best context for sexual relationships ­ Almost every society around the world defines the male/female unit ­ 90 ­95% of all people marry worldwide What is marriage? ­ Worldwide, it usually includes:  • A culturally defined relationship between a man and a women from different families • A set of rights the couple and their families obtain over each other • An assignment of responsibility to their spouses and their in­laws • A division  of domestic labor 1 Tuesday, October 4, y Important Functions of Marriage 1. It forms the social bonds and creates the relationships needed for the material and  social support of children 2. It defines the rights and obligations the couple have toward each other and toward  other people 3. It creates new relationships between families and other kinds of kin groups Universals of Marriage:  ­ No particular form of marriage or type of family is considered universal ­ Various forms of marriage and family have been used worldwide to serve the same  functions Endogamy and Exogamy ­ Endogamy ­ marry within your kin or social group • Advantage ­ helps to keep wealth within the group • Examples: traditional Hindu Indian marriages which occurs within caste ­ Exogamy ­ marry outside your kin or social group • Advantages: you are forming links with other groups which will assist you during hard  times Monogamy ­ Every individual is allowed just one spouse ­ Most of the world’s societies are not monogamies ­ It is law in the USA Polygamy ­ Marriage where more than one spouse is involved ­ Polygamy ­ one man has more than one wife 2 Tuesday, October 4, y ­ Polyandry ­ One woman has more than one husband (this is very rare ­ less than 1%) ­ 80% of societies allow men to have multiple wives Arranged Marriages ­ Common is SE Asia ­ Usually, the families will set this up ­ Arrangements are seen to be beneficial both politically and financially  ­ Divorce rates in arranged marriages are not higher than in other marriages ­ Approximately 50% of people in India say they would consider marrying someone  they did not love Incest Taboo  ­ A cultural universal ­ Exceptions: Some Royal dynasties (e.g. ancient Egypt) ­ How close is the closely related varies widely Marital Alliances ­ In some societies, there is not a formal wedding ceremony, and a couple is  recognized as married when they live together regularly and as divorced when one of them moves out or gets thrown out Marital Exchanges ­ The marriage of a man and women is accompanied by a transfer of goods or sources Bride Wealth ­ Custom where a man and his relatives give wealth to the brides relatives ­ The woman’s main duty is to provide children to the marriage Bride Service  3 Tuesday, October 4, y ­ Husband spend a period of time working for the family of his bride Dowry  ­ Woman’s family transfers some of their own wealth or property to their daughter and  her husband Postmarital Residence ­ Where new couples establish their residence ­ Our pattern (the couple starts a new household apart from their parents) is unusual  Patterns of Postmarital Residence ­ Patrilocal­ couple lives with or near the husband’s parents ­ Bilocal ­ couple has the option to live near either set of kin ­ Matrilocal ­ couple lives with or near the wife’s parents ­ Neolocal ­ couples lives apart from parents starting a separate and independent  household Sexual Division of Labor ­ Patterned ways in which tasks are given to men or women  ­ Each sex has access to the goods or services produced by the other A State of Nature? ­ It is not natural for men to be the bread winners (producers of food and other needed  supplies) and for females to be the caretakers ­ These sorts of gender roles are a result of culture 4


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