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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Leaper, C., Breed, L., & Perlman, C. (2002). Variations in gender stereotyped content of children's television cartoons across genres. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 32 (8), 1653-4363.
Macionis, J. J. (2012). Sociology. In Sociology (p. 102). PEARSON.
Rubin, J. P. (1974). The eye of the beholder: Parents' views on sex of newborns. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 512-519.
Witt, S. D. (n.d.). The Influence of Peers on Children’s Socialization to Gender Roles. Retrieved from University of Akron: http://gozips.uakron.edu/~susan8/artpeers.htm
Wood, E. (2002). The impact of parenting experience on gender stereotyped toy play of children. Sex Roles, 47, 39-50.
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