Gender Role Behaviors: Biology and Society Share Responsibility Essay

Gender Role Behaviors: Biology and Society Share Responsibility Essay

Length: 1524 words (4.4 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

There are many different facets to the nature versus nurture argument that has been going on for decades. One of these, the influence of nature and nurture on gender roles and behaviors, is argued well by both Deborah Blum and Aaron Devor, both of whom believe that society plays a large role in determining gender. I, however, have a tendency to agree with Blum that biology and society both share responsibility for these behaviors. The real question is not whether gender expression is a result of nature or nurture, but how much of a role each of these plays.

Both Devor and Blum can agree that society plays a large role in establishing gender identity. In his article “Gender Role Behaviors and Attitudes,” Devor states, “Gender role characteristics reflect the ideological contentions underlying the dominant gender schema in North American society” (Devor 571). Deborah Blum agrees to an extent in her article “The Gender Blur: Where Does Biology End and Society Take Over?” As stated in her article by behavioral endocrinologist Mark Breedlove, “We’re born with predispositions, but it’s society that amplifies them, exaggerates them” (qtd by Blum 574). It is clear, however that the two disagree on the extent of the societal role in determining gender role characteristics. Devor’s statement, and entire article for that matter, point to a clear belief that biology has no effect on gender roles. Instead, he believes that our views of the “natural” behaviors of males and females are based solely upon the society that we live in, that we have been conditioned to see certain characteristics as “feminine” and others as “masculine”. This ideology sparks from the belief that biological factors make males more aggressive and dominant than fem...


... middle of paper ...


...logy or society? Nature or nurture? In this case, I would say that the answer is that both biology and society have great influence on how males and females behave in their roles. The only question now is, to what degree do each of these play a role? For this answer, we may have to wait. The key thing is to know that nature starts the process, and nurture helps that process along.




Works Cited

Blum, Deborah. “The Gender Blur: Where Does Biology End and Society Take Over?” Signs of Life in the USA: Readings on Popular Culture for Writers. 6th Edition. Sonia Maasik and Jack Solomon. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2009. 573-580. Print.

Devor, Aaron. “Gender Role Behaviors and Attitudes.” Signs of Life in the USA: Readings on Popular Culture for Writers. 6th Edition. Sonia Maasik and Jack Solomon. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2009. 567-572. Print.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Gender And Gender Impact On Society Essays

- For many, gender is an unquestionable fact of nature resulting in the determination of male or female. However many feminists are left wondering how they should feel about these strict gender roles that are inflicted on women and men and in most cases leave women feeling like they are playing the inferior roles. Many are struggling “both to challenge and to celebrate gender difference” (Rhode, 22) and are conflicted between the idea that women should be united together as one group and the dichotomy that each woman has her own unique individual experience that cannot be vaguely defined in a group....   [tags: Gender, Gender role, Woman, Feminism]

Powerful Essays
1304 words (3.7 pages)

Essay about Gender Equity And Biological Determinism

- There has been discussion about gender role and gender equity for a long time. As we are striving for gender equity, the origin of gender role is also a good topic to research on. In this paper, I will first give definitions of the two explanations for gender role, social constructionism and biological determinism. I will talk about the comparison of this two and give out my preference. Second, I will mention more about gender equity, including the supposed different gender set, the possibility of gender equity and biological understanding of gender equity....   [tags: Gender role, Gender, Sociology, Transgender]

Powerful Essays
763 words (2.2 pages)

Gender, Biological, And Gender Essay

- There are many different opposing viewpoints regarding gender, biological sex, the right to choose one’s sexuality, and how all those controversial subjects tie into addiction. The language used to describe the new social world that we live in has changed dramatically. A person is no longer just male or just female. We are learning that the old-fashioned black-and-white binary viewpoint leaves many people in the grey. Gender is often used interchangeably with sex. Sex relates to a biological standpoint; what you are born with....   [tags: Gender, Homosexuality, Gender identity]

Powerful Essays
828 words (2.4 pages)

Gender Roles Of Male And Female Essay

- Our society is has been maintained throughout the human history by the roles and responsibilities of different members. Especially gender roles of male and female have contributed to the balance and development of society in different aspects. There are several ways to determine the roles of male and female, including biology, culture, evolution, and society. In general, gender role is considered to be a set of attitudes, behaviors, and self-presentation methods ascribed to members of a certain biological sex....   [tags: Gender, Gender role, Sexual dimorphism, Male]

Powerful Essays
1135 words (3.2 pages)

Gender Stereotypes And Gender Roles Essay

- ... Often it is assumed that because we know the child’s sex we also know what they will be interested in. These outdated assumptions and roles face a major problem today due to people feeling free to express their true preferences. Transgender males and females have been very popular topics in recent news. More then ever we are seeing people feel enough social acceptance to express how they feel at the core of their being. Transgender individuals are challenging the rigid roles we have set in place by talking about how they feel like the opposite gender and how this is how they were born....   [tags: Gender, Gender role, Male, Female]

Powerful Essays
909 words (2.6 pages)

Gender And Gender Non Conforming Essay examples

- In traditional Chinese culture, the status of males are essential than females because the role of males in a family is the leader and in charge of external matters such as working to support the family, whereas the role of females in a family is the follower and in charge of internal matters such as housework. Thus, only males have power in the family even in society which called patriarchy society. However, the belief of different gender’s standing has changed in the past few decades as females have opportunities and abilities to work in society even their working postitions are higher than males’....   [tags: Gender, Female, Male, Gender role]

Powerful Essays
1010 words (2.9 pages)

Learning Gender In a Diverse Society Essay

- In this article, Shaw and Lee describe how the action of labels on being “feminine” or “masculine” affect society. Shaw and Lee describe how gender is, “the social organization of sexual difference” (124). In biology gender is what sex a person is and in culture gender is how a person should act and portray themselves. They mention how gender is what we were taught to do in our daily lives from a young age so that it can become natural(Shaw, Lee 126). They speak on the process of gender socialization that teaches us how to act and think in accordance to what sex a person is....   [tags: Gender Issues]

Powerful Essays
999 words (2.9 pages)

Gender And Gender Within The World Of Science Essay

- ... This research question, along with many others looking for the biological roots of gender, fail to make the important distinction thus wrongfully reinforcing the notions that there are inherent masculine and feminine characteristics in the brain. The small sample size of 49 is difficult to make general assumptions from and the study did not control for genetic differences except sex nor did they control for the socioeconomic effects on education of the children involved. Most importantly, they did not consider the possibility of self fulfilling prophecies which can occur in young children, specifically in girls who perhaps are taught math with less attention or encouragement than boys....   [tags: Gender, Gender role, Scientific method]

Powerful Essays
1705 words (4.9 pages)

Essay Bloodchild: Gender Inequality in Society

- Bloodchild by Octavia Butler is seen as a story about the relationship between alien oppressors and a group oppressed humans. It has also been described as a love story between the human narrator and the chief alien. In her afterword, she describes “Bloodchild” as “a love story between two very different beings,” “a coming of age story” and a “pregnant man story.”(Hardy) However, when one comparing Butler’s “Bloodchild” to Simone De Beauvoir’s essay “The second sex”, similarities surrounding the social issues of gender inequality arise....   [tags: Octavia Butler, women, patriarchal society]

Powerful Essays
1452 words (4.1 pages)

Gender Bender Essay example

- Gender Bender Gender is the term society uses to identify the anatomical differences between men and women. Gender roles are the pre-conceived ideas that society has based on a person’s gender. Gender identity is often debated as being either biological or socially constructed. Gender identity is a person’s sense of identifying or belonging to either the male or female classification, regardless of physical assignment. Gender identity is primarily biological regardless of a person’s physical assignment....   [tags: Gender]

Powerful Essays
518 words (1.5 pages)