A rfeport on a presentation titled 'The Gendered Self'

Essay by charlotteswilliamsUniversity, Bachelor'sB, April 2004

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A group pojects aim, was to look at present and main issues and theories surronding gender in connection with the proposed idea that gender is a social construction. We were trying to look firstly at the most common theories amongst past and recent literature and at the major ways in which people view their gender and themselves in a gendered way. We were primarily presenting cultural or social theory, that is these are ways people view themselves. Because this is a look at social theories we were not presenting evidence to support that any of these theories are in fact how gender is, although, these perspectives do have corresponding medical, psychological, sociological and philosophical approaches. Our intention was to present the social theories and leave the difficult tasks of sorting out the implications to the audience and for the discussion after the initial presentaion.

We found in the process of our research that there is no perfect gender theory yet.

Each perspective seems to explain some things well and cannot explain others. There are few purists that cling solely to a single theory. Many people recognize that there is no one of these theories that explain all their experiences or what they see in their lives. Each theory has important contributions to our understanding of gender. I think gender is far more complex than any of these theories. I believe these theories should be studied to see the perspectives people use to view gender rather than describe the intricacies of the gender system as it exists.

We also found that, as we expected, gender means different things to different people. Your definition of gender often directs the way you look at gender. One common perspective of gender focuses on roles, while another focuses on identity. If you define gender as...