The Nurture Of Gender Roles

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorCollege, Undergraduate February 2008

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The ideas and expectations of men and women in American society are established and secure in the nation's mind. More women stay home during the day to take care of the house and children than men, and more men hold political offices than women. These traditional gender roles are the way of life in America, and rarely ever opposed. However, did you ever stop to think about why you associate cooking with women or leadership with men? Was there ever a time you did not feel this way? Surely, you must have learned these values at some point, and most likely when at a young age. Images of the stereotypical housewife and bread-winning husband are constantly being flashed on the television. Commercials, news programs, and even cartoons illustrate a male dominated society. During prime-time television men outnumber women two or three to one. Television not only feeds the principle of stereotypical gender roles, but also reinforces it with every change of the program, showing the same images of men and women.

With the average American watching at least 3 hours of television a day, the standard is set in our minds.

The mind is more easily influenced during childhood, while development is still taking place. Information gathered during this stage will settle much longer than in adults. Dr. Nancy Signorielli stated in the official news magazine for the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP News) "Television plays a central role in most youngsters' social lives". The media is a major part