Gender Schema Theory And Psychoanalytic Theory

892 Words4 Pages
The following paper explores two different theories, gender schema theory and Psychoanalytic theory, which seek to explain sex and/or gender. Both theories that will be depicted throughout this paper has its own orientation towards what gender is, where it is located, and what this means for every day. Ryle (2013) claims the gender schema theory is constructed on the frameworks of both cognitive development and social learning theory which seeks to explain how individuals become gendered in society. The theory was developed by Sandra Bem (1981) arguing that cultural influences predominantly impact how children establish and develop their ideas about what it means to be a man or women. The theory proposes that to learn such definitive information…show more content…
At a young age certain preconceive notions about a gender are created—gender schemas—which then shapes the way we view the world. The inequality comes forth when the schema limits themselves to the particular subset of behaviors and attitudes appropriate to their own gender. These limitations can be seen throughout our society. For instance, Researcher, Woodington (2010) explores the stereotypes on sex discrimination towards women in the legal profession and seeks to dismantle this discrimination by assimilating the cognitive principles of the gender schema theory. The journal articles claim that schemas create “gender role stereotypes which are also a primary mechanism for reinforcing sex discrimination towards women in the legal profession due to their basis in the social roles traditionally occupied by women and men” (135). Therefore, by dismantling these schemas that categorize genders will aid in dismantling sex discrimination. A major limitation of the gender schema theory is the issue regarding individual differences, the theory is unable to explain why different children with common environmental influences respond differently in assimilating gender appropriate behavior. According to Ryle (2013) a strength of this theory is that it addresses the lack of explanation of the cognitive development as to “why sex in particular

More about Gender Schema Theory And Psychoanalytic Theory

Open Document