Friday, November 29, 2019
Contemporary Issues Gender
Table of Contents Introduction Position of Women in the Society Women in History Conclusion Works Cited Introduction Feminist theory considers ways in which physical differences between men and women are used by culture and social structure to show that women are allocated inferior and degrading activities such as motherhood and secretary. They are subjugated to stereotypes, which portrays them as weak and emotionally dependent on men. Women are often excluded from public activities and relegated to private domain of the home. Finally, women are ascribed specific feminine qualities and identity through socialization so that women live in a state of false consciousness.Advertising We will write a custom research paper sample on Contemporary Issues: Gender specifically for you for only $16.05 $11/page Learn More Position of Women in the Society The critique of womenÃ¢â¬â¢s position in society and culture goes back to the writings of Mary Wollonstonec raft in a publication entitled Ã¢â¬Ëa vindication of the rights of women, Stuart Mill Ã¢â¬Å"the subjugation of womenÃ¢â¬ and Karl Marx and Fredrick Engels (1884) Ã¢â¬Å"the origin of private property, the family and the stateÃ¢â¬ (Lise 11). Engels showed that womenÃ¢â¬â¢s subjection began with the rise of private property. Using Marx and Engels, feminist scholars view women subjection as a product of the overall exploitation and injustices that are found in capitalist societies (Rowbotham 25). However, radical feminist scholars view the oppression of women as inevitable in all male dominated societies. Political and economic power is concentrated in male hands because there is substantial social differentiation between the sexes. Functionalists and feminists theories do conceive that it is impossible to change quickly the gender roles without revising the social structure. For functionalists, if there is change in the social structure, social disorder will be inevitable b ut for conflict theorists, no social structure is safe if it is maintained by oppressing a majority of its citizens (Rowbotham 71). Women in History From the pre-industrial epoch, men were powerful because of their physical strength and freedom from childbearing duties that allowed them to dominate women physically. Cultural beliefs support a social structure which puts men in dominant positions hence from early childhood children are socialized to accept traditional gender roles as natural and just. Using Marx class analysis, males are like the bourgeoisie because they own and control most of the societyÃ¢â¬â¢s wealth, prestige and power. Females are as the proletariat who are the subjects, work under the directives of the bourgeoisies (men), exploited and their culture is devalued (Brenner 43). This means that menÃ¢â¬â¢s work is valued and most of the womenÃ¢â¬â¢s work, particularly in the home is devalued. Feminist scholars have challenged the stereotyping of women and argu ed for a gender balance study of society in which womenÃ¢â¬â¢s experiences and contributions are as visible as those of men are.Advertising Looking for research paper on gender studies? Let's see if we can help you! Get your first paper with 15% OFF Learn More In a study of positions of men and women in paid labor, it was concluded that most workers are found in sex-segregated jobs meaning that certain jobs were exclusively for men or women. Such segregation is not natural but society is structured to channel people into occupations based on the gender and also to reserve positions of authority to men (Lise 20). Conclusion Feminist theory is a holistic theory mainly conceived with the nature of womenÃ¢â¬â¢s global oppression and subordination to men. It aims at freeing all women from male supremacy and exploitation as well as confronting the sex-class system. In feminism, there are several tendencies and groupings, each with a different focus. For example the Marxi st feminist, female supremacy feminism, academic feminism, this for instance focuses on the lives of black women. For white women, their concerns are equal pay, equal education and opportunities, free contraceptives and free abortion. Feminism has been associated more with white womenÃ¢â¬â¢s culture. Radical feminism is characterized by the belief that patriarchy is the major and universal cause of womenÃ¢â¬â¢s oppression. Works Cited Brenner, Johanna. Ã¢â¬Å"On gender and class in the U.S. labor history.Ã¢â¬ Monthly Review, 50.6(1998): 22-31. Lise, Vogel. Marxism and the Oppression of Women: toward a unitary theory. Virginia: Rutgers University Press. Print. Rowbotham, Sheila. The Socialist Register 1998: Letter from a Marxist Feminist. 1998. Web. http://socialistregister.com/index.php/srv/article/download/5699/2595Advertising We will write a custom research paper sample on Contemporary Issues: Gender specifically for you for only $16.05 $11/page Learn More This research paper on Contemporary Issues: Gender was written and submitted by user Jar0n to help you with your own studies. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly. You can donate your paper here.