should be approximately 2-3 pages, double spaced
This exercise will cover three components:
- Your early gender socialization
- Your experiences and attitudes about gender as an adult
- How the media reinforces gender stereotypes
Answer each set of questions in a short paragraph. For step 4, offer a short summary paragraph about how societal attitudes about gender operate at all these levels.
1. Thinking back to when you were a child, what were some of the things your caregivers did to shape the gender roles you experienced? Some examples could be particular sports/clubs that you joined, hair style or clothing, terms used to describe you such as tomboy or girly-boy, etc. Were there any areas that you rejected in attempts to identify as more masculine or feminine? If you had a sibling of the other sex, were there differences in how your caregivers treated you?
2. Identify areas where masculine or feminine stereotypes of adult behavior have affected your life. Do you generally accept traditional gender roles and expect others to do the same? For instance, do you expect women to do most of the household chores, while men should make more money? What types of jobs do you consider to be typically feminine or typically masculine? If male, would you consider a typically feminine job? If female, would you consider a typically masculine job?
3. Observe how gender is used in commercials or general products such as shampoo, soap, and other toiletries. Based on at least 10 commercials and/or products, detail what the product is for and whether it is geared towards men or women. How so? You either list each commercial/product or provide a general summary of commercials.
4. Reflect on how all of these facets work together to shape societal attitudes about gender and your own attitudes about gender.