Gender Stereotypes And Gender Inequality

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From the moment a child is born, they are directed and coached into a gender stereotype that follows social norms. They are informed by various contexts within society, what colours they should like, books they should read, clothes they should wear, toys they should play with and the appropriate behaviours that represent their gender. Values and behaviours are spontaneously implemented as children internalise the knowledge and information gained through their environments (National Union of Teachers, 2013, p. 3). Children become aware of stereotypical conduct and attitudes that are often shown through society, history and media constructs, that being a male is a commensurate of masculinity and a female correlates qualities of femininity and timidness. The intricacies relating to gender identities are more than ingrained in Australian culture, they have been historically embedded for many years, where the man was the hunter and woman was the gatherer (Wood & Eagly, 2002, p. 700). This binary way of thinking (Gobby, topic 6,n.d.), intensifies the issue of gender inequality. Author MacNaughton (2000, p.18) brings to light the long standing debate over the biological versus the social determination of shaping our gendered identities, concluded that both may be interconnected but an educational belief of one over the other may present detrimental issues. However, MacNaughton (2000, p.14) also asserts that agents of socialisation such as parents, teachers and other stakeholders, model and inspire gender specific behaviours through both implicit and explicit directions.
Additional to gender stereotypes is the prevalence of non-stereotypical expressions of gender and non-binary identities, for example, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender...

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... still believing that unity is achieved by becoming assimilated with the culture of the nation one resides in, with little to none allowance for alternate cultural beliefs, values or practices, many refugees and immigrants suffer what has been termed by Buchmann, DiPrete, & McDaniel (2008, p. 78) as cultural homelessness, a harsh contradiction to the words of the well known Australian song “We are Australian”. Cultural homelessness is defined as a person who is lacking a sense of belonging. This in itself is detrimental to a person’s self identity and sense of self and often to their culture as they turn their backs on it to reinvent and reconstruct their cultural identities to better suit and fit into varying social contexts (Siraj-Blatchford, 2004, p. 24 and Buchmann, DiPrete, & McDaniel, 2008, p. 79). This type of behaviour is also known as becoming acculturated.

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