The social roles assigned to women and men
the roles of women and men have changed significantly in the last five decades. for instance, women can now compete with men on the same occupational opportunities including those that need manual labor. the purpose of this essay is to briefly discuss the changes in gender roles during the last 50 years.
the roles of women in society have particularly shaped their shape completely. for instance, fifty years ago, women were socialized to home and family tasks only. for the woman, marriage was considered the ultimate destiny. their academic curriculum basically comprised of lessons on how to become a wife or mother. most girls even left school early as the academic qualifications were deemed unnecessary. for this reason, women were overly dependent on their husbands economically as most would leave their jobs to concentrate on marriage. however, things have taken a turn and more women are allowed into previously denied educational and occupational opportunities. women are not encaged in their kitchens now but rather are allowed to tread on the same grounds that only men enjoyed previously. women now have a bargaining ground in society as they undergo the same challenges that were considered possible only to men.
on the other hand, the roles of men have had a minimal change. previously, men were considered the sole breadwinners of the family. the father worked hard and demanded respect and obedience both from the children and the wife. most of the times, fathers saw little benefit from personally involving themselves in nurturing their family. in other words, men were just role model images to their children. for instance, according to the social learning theory, fathers were the role model for masculine traits in their children. i.e. boys would learn to be men from them and girls would desire men like them in the future. however, this has changed as men are not the sole breadwinners in the family. the economic times are becoming tough and this has forced both the mother and father to work together to fend for their family. nevertheless, research has argued that there is still a clear line between the two genders when it comes to household chores.
some perspectives can argue that the changes have occured in different levels. from a personal perspective, the changes have been good so far since the balance that was lacking then has been attained somehow. also, some might argue that the feminist agendas were the main reason for the changes while others would claim that change has occured to meet the needs of the economy.
in conclusion, gender roles have changed greatly in the last 50 years and the changes in gender roles are evident. men have come down from being the sovereign figures of the family to actually take part in family upbringing and women have scaled up from mere housekeepers to providers. women and men are becoming cobreadwinners in the family system. this has proved both the fatherly role and the motherly role to be very criticl for a normal family upbringing. the changes have occured as a result of several factors such as equaity movements and tough economic times. with all this changes, who knows what the futre man and woman would be?
Patriarchal hierarchy extrusion
Even though the society is deeply rooted in the patriarchal hierarchy, this practice has changed significantly during the last 50 years. Initially, the community was divided into gender roles where the duties of women were towards their husbands and children. Since women are viewed to be nurturing and caring, their position was in the home partaking domestic responsibilities including knitting and cooking. Men, on the other hand, were perceived as the sole providers of their homes as well as protecting their families from danger. Also, jobs favored the men because of their masculine traits including strength and toughness. However, in the modern society, gender roles have considerably evolved where the women are taking up the roles initially considered to be male-dominated. Also, women today have taken up the managerial positions initially perceived to be for the male gender. However, women still feel the pressure of filling up the shoes of men in these male-dominated positions where they have to prove that they are worth these positions.
Education has played a significant role in pivoting the entry of women in the paid employment sector. Thus, in a culture that only had men in the employment industry, women too have made significant differences in this sector. With women in the employment world, they have taken up the mantle of breadwinners a role that was initially left for the men. Moreover, their purpose is not in carrying out domestic chores as well as doing their husband' bidding but in the corporate world as well. The entry of women in the corporate world has also toppled the perceived balance where they were seen as the caregivers to their children. 50 years later, the men too have taken up the responsibility of looking after their children while the women are away at work.
Also, 50 years ago, men were expected to fight for their country by joining the army while the women were meant to stay home and wait for their husbands. However, currently, women too are going to war, a field that was initially male-dominated. Also, the men were expected to work full time in their chosen areas while the women undertook the household chores. However, in the modern times, women too have taken up the mantle of working full-time jobs in the corporate world while striking a balance between work and family. Thus it is interesting to learn that women have come a long way in seeking equality with their male counterparts. For example, in the traditional society, women and men were expected to dress in a certain way because of their gender roles. However, the conventional code of dressing has significantly changed, and women are at liberty to choose their dress code.
Although gender roles have changed in the past 50 years, this change implies that the rigid rules that governed the duties perceived to belong to either men or women have become flexible. Moreover, the era where men were paid more than women has been eroded as well. However, some roles are currently meant for women and men. For example, the purpose of child caring is still under the duty of women who are viewed as nurturing and compassionate. Also, menial jobs including vehicle repairs are still perceived to be male-dominated.
Research of changing gender roles
The roles of men and women have changed in the last 30 years. In this report I intend to explain what the roles of men and women were like 30 years ago and what the roles of men and women are like now. I will also give details of why these changes have occurred.30 years ago the roles of women were very different to that of today. At the start of our nation's history, women were socialized to attend exclusively to home and family tasks.
For a woman, marriage was considered to be a girl’s destiny. Their academic curriculum reflected preparing girls for their life as a housewife and a mother, having domestic sciences instead of the more academic sciences boys took. Most girls left school as early as possible, as qualifications were not seen as necessary.
Women were economically dependent on their husbands, as they usually gave up work when they got married. Women had less power inside and outside the home.
Gradually they were allowed access into previously denied educational and occupational opportunities, if they wanted to pursue these personal goals.
Men were the sole bread-winners. They were also the disciplinarians, which meant women had even less power.
‘Father’ worked hard, demanded respect and obedience from his children, and saw little profit in personally involving himself in their nurturance. The image of father was a role model. About 1969, Social Learning Theory posed the father conceptually as the role model for masculine traits in their children. Sons learned to be men from their fathers, daughters learned to want this type of man for boyfriends and husbands (Bandura, 1969; Skolnick, 1992).
30 years on there has been a lot of progress for women, for example equal wages, which is because of the legal pay act, which has in turn led to there being much more women in the workforce. More and more women want to stay on at education, as the subjects are the same for males and females, and there is much more emphasis on expanding careers. The popularity of marriage has plummeted as women now have higher expectations.
Another important reason for women to be able to go to work is the help of nurseries and the increasing improvements of child care, meaning women can still have children and now careers as well.
Other changes have occurred in the last 30 years, such as the outlawing of rape within marriage, the outlawing of child abuse and the legislation of abortion, which makes it more socially acceptable and gives women a lot more choice and freedom.
Men’s roles have changed in the sense that they are no longer the sole bread-winner, at least not in the majority of households today. Both salaries are just as important as the other, as families now need more money to suit their lifestyles of today. Families are consuming more; therefore need more money, thus making the role of the women in the family just as important as that of the man’s.
They also do more domestic labor- although it has been argued that men still don’t do an equal amount of domestic labor. Much research has indicated that there is a clear gender division of labor in household tasks.
In order to compete in the new global market place, Britain at present needs a more flexible workforce, with most people working; again nurseries help to ensure the mother will be working. Women are needed to actively work. But women are still expected to rear and
socialize the next generation of workers at the same time.
Different perspectives will suggest that change has occurred in differing amounts. They will also see change as occurring for different reasons, for example feminists will say that it was the rise of their movement in the 1970’s that caused changes, whereas Marxists would suggest change has occurred to meet the needs of the economy and bourgeoisie.
The roles of the men and women are becoming just as important as one another, thus their roles are becoming more intergrated conjugal roles.
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