WK1 discussion Gender Bias
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Gender bias is something that I believe is ingrained in each of us through culture and society. When I was a child, the gender roles were defined. Men went to work and provided for their families, and women stayed home and were the caretakers and nurturers of the children and the home makers. The women cleaned the house and cooked meals. The roles inside my home growing up were the girls cleaned the house, and the boys mowed the lawn. As I got older society was changing and the roles in the household changed as well. All my siblings were given chores inside the house and outside with yard chores. The only thing that did not change is the lawn mowing. Only my brothers mowed the lawn until one day I told my dad I wanted to mow the lawn. He looked a little surprised but smiled and said ok, then he showed me how to start and run the lawn mower. I continued to mow the lawn and I loved doing it. My mother got a job to help with the bills and the gender roles in the household were no longer gender based. Everyone was expected to do any household or yard chore.
The gender roles were changing in society. There were more dual parent households where both parents worked. This can be attributed to the cost of living rising and creating a need for both parents to bring income into the home. “The roles of women and men have become more similar, mainly because of women’s increased participation in the paid labor force. Specifically, women’s labor force participation increased from 34% to 60% between 1950 and 1998 and men’s decreased from 86% to 75% (U.S. Department of Labor, 1999), (Diekman, A.B., & Eagly, A.H., (2000).
There are gender specific roles in many cultures, and this can create gender biases. Being culturally conditioned to believe that men or women must have defined roles can create a biased mind set on what each gender should be doing.
An example of a gender bias when I was younger was something that I heard in school a lot. Statements that were made about physical abilities. Boys can run faster than girls. Girls cannot play football. Boys do not play with dolls. And many more gender biased statements. The truth is that there were many girls that could run faster then boys, and some girls did want to play football, and some boys did want to play with dolls. The gender biases that people have and have had throughout many generations, have held people back from doing things that they wanted to do and that they were capable of doing. The women’s movement created a change in gender roles, but there are still many gender biases throughout the world today.
Gender biases are still ingrained in most people’s minds. These biases can create a bias based opinion any number of studies done involving different genders. Studies from medical to social interactions can be affected based on gender biases. One gender biased example could be a study done on breast cancer. A gender biased opinion could be made by thinking that only women get breast cancer, but that is false because men can also develop breast cancer. So the study may focus on women but exclude men so the study would be inaccurate on breast cancer as a whole.
(Diekman, A.B., & Eagly, A.H., (2000). Stereo Types as Dynamic Constructs. Women and Men of the past, present, and future. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. https://doi-org.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/10.1177/0146167200262001
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