If we try to categorize human by the term “gender”, people will be divided into two groups, males and females. Using this kind of categorization, it is considering people who belong in the same group are similar, and these two groups are very different from each other. However in real life, men and women’s characteristics tend to overlap (Crespi) . Even people who are in the same group may have different characteristics and personalities which are formed influencing by the environment and experiences.
Socialization refers to “the lifelong social experience by which people develop their human potential and learn culture”. (Macionis, 2012) By gender socialization, the simplest explanation is the process of learning what it means to be a male or female in the society, in which gender stereotypes and bias are usually involved. For example, boys should be tough, brave, strong, sporty, while girls are soft, moody, passive, and allowed to cry.
In fact, gender socialization appears very early in childhood, and it is generally regarded as one of the most related issues in early childhood. (Early Childhood, 2007) Children learn the differences between boys and girls by the environment they are exposed to, and the ideas are reinforced mainly by family, education, peer groups, and the mass media.
Family is the first influence to the children’s gender socialization. The interaction of children with their parents is the first exposure of the gender differences idea to them. Since the babies is born, parents start to treat sons and daughters differently with their gender stereotype by dressing infants with different colors’ clothes, giving them gender differentiated toys. One study indicates that parents have differential exp...
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