Gender Inequality and Discrimination in America Essay

Gender Inequality and Discrimination in America Essay

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Gender Inequality and Discrimination in America


What is your first memory of a child? Was it blowing out the candles on your birthday cake, or was it playing a game with a friend? Was it riding a bike or making a snowman? Many of these events will most likely be remembered of your childhood, but the memory of how you were socially biased will not be. The memory of being wrapped in a socially acceptable colored blanket depending on your gender either boy or girl. How your mother spoke to you, with a soft voice of understanding or concern if you were likely a boy, and how if you were a girl you were likely given a baby doll to play with instead of a truck. Throughout history gender differences have been exemplified given a particular culture. In the USA the role of the female has endured much discrimination as with racial discrimination.

Many factors contribute to the problem of gender inequality [1]; two of these factors will be discussed, social structural factors and social psychological factors. Attitudes and values of both men and women perpetuate gender inequality. Past attitudes have reflected the traditional role of the female within society: the notion that women are less capable and competent as men. Within this traditional role, a woman's place is in the home, as the guardian of the social order.

Gender roles are evident within any society. Not all roles follow these traditional roles of male dominance and submissive women. Such societies take on roles, which are the betterment of the community. An example would be the study performed by Margaret Mead (1969), of three primitive New Guinea tribes. Mead states that the meaning of being male and female is determined not only biologically but also...


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...without gender differences we would all be as robots cohabitating in a fantasy world of equality. I took on this topic because of the strong emotion I feel as a women living with such discrimination in our society. As subtle as some discriminations are, there is no denying the definite battle of inequality women face daily within our society. Even with the economic, social, political and educational inequality that women must overcome, I will accept the fight, rather than conform to a non-gender society as stated by Bem.

The desire of most women, including myself, is not to be the same as men but to be given the same opportunities and options in life. I believe in the philosophy that you can be whatever your heart desires. If a women strives hard enough, the trials and tribulations she may face along her chosen path will only make her stronger in the end.

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