The toy market clearly reinforces the binary construction of gender; there is an obvious divide between “boy toys” and “girl toys” and what these toys represent to either child. It’s clear to see that, “Whether in the boys’ or girls’ aisle, toys help to create some of children’s earliest experiences of the gender divide that separates males and females.” (Inness 79) Barbie dolls are marketed so that young girls learn that they are consumers and also the supposed significance that males should have to them. Baby dolls are also only marketed towards young girls, reinforcing the idea that women should be homemakers. However, G.I. Joe’s teach young boys that their life should revolve around aggression and being the hero. Essentially, the toy market is one of the earliest influences on children and it’s an influence that fully enforces the gender binary.
Movie culture plays a large role in enforcing gender identities. Disney princess movies are a wonderful example of these identities. While most of the princesses a...
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...led up for a role. Basically, this all just reinforces the idea that the perfect female is thin. Magazines will always perpetrate gender stereotypes and societal norms.
A binary construction of gender simply encourages the oppression of women through its subconscious hierarchy. Then, following this, every form of media and culture in our society today also encourages the gender identities created with this binary structure. Toys can’t be marketed neutrally, they’re either all pink and sparkly or rough and tumble. Even movies with female action heroines just have the women portraying a stereotypical masculinity. Cosmopolitan isn’t even safe from enforcing gender identities despite its more contemporary topics. All in all, it’s clear to see that the binary construction of gender is problematic and simply serves to enforce stereotypical gender identities onto society.
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