Food for a feminine thought
Human Rights Reader 331
Gender inequality is the mother of all inequalities and of the violation of all women’s rights. (L. Puri)
-In our land of Oz, hypocrisy is without shame. Patriarchy rules. (J. Koenig)
-Women are not ‘men of the feminine sex’. (J. F. Sarmiento)
-Gender relations are a form of organizing society …as is income.
1. While sex refers to biological differences between men and women, gender refers to the roles and responsibilities that society constructs, assigns and expects of women and of men on the basis of their biological and physical characteristics. The bad thing about this is that these expectations create stereotypes.
2. Gender thus refers to the attributes and opportunities associated with being male or female and to the relationships between males and females which, in-last-instance, are socially constructed and learned through socialization processes. Therefore, gender roles change over time. Ergo: society can change the gender roles!
3. As regards gender equality, this does not mean that women and men should become the same, but rather that women and men should have equal access to opportunities and to achieve equal results. Furthermore, gender equality is not a woman’s issue, but must concern and engage men as well as women.