Sociology: Final Exam Project
By: Maria Naumovich
1) Gender roles and Gender Identity
Boys are rotten, made out of cotton
Girls are handy, made out of candy
Boys go to Jupiter to get more stupider
Girls go to Mars to get more candy bars
Boys drink whiskey to get more friskey
Girls drink Pepsi, to get more sexy"
This was a children's rhyme that kids used to sing on the playground during recess, along with many other rhymes. This rhyme is a great example of how kids are taught gender roles right away and how all genders should be in constant battle with one another. Teaching little kids that one gender is superior to the other and that they can't like each other (until they are older and that is when they have to like each other) is extremely harmful. Rhymes like the one above implant gender roles in children's head and those roles stay with them for the rest of their lives.
Boys and girls do not have to hate each other and one gender isn't smarter than the other, it all depends on the person and the education that that person receives. Boys are labeled as drunks and as perverts from a young age, but it isn't shown to be a bad thing in this kind of rhyme. Little boys will laugh at the idea of drinking and dating girls, and it'll maybe even be something they look forward to, but with rhymes that are acting like it's okay to get "friskey" with girls make those boys believe that they aren't doing anything wrong when they are older and a girl wants them to stop.
For girls in this rhyme, it is acting like the main goal for a girl is to be sexy and to be attractive (to please men). This is saying that all girls want to grow up and be attractive, which is mainly true, but it is only true because from a young age girl are told that they always need to look nice. "Don't get your dress dirty", "One day you'll grow up to be a beautiful women", "Don't mess up your nails, or your clothes, or your hair". We tell girls that they are pretty or that they will be pretty as if it is the only thing that matters to a girl or that in order to be a girl you need to be pretty. We need to tell girls that they are pretty brilliant too.
Girls are smarter than boys
We shouldn't say such general statements like this because it is always going to depend on the person and the education they have received. And someone's intelligence should not be the basis for their self worth.
Boys are taught to think that this is okay
Boys are told from a young age that it isn't a bad thing to be mean to girls, it's in fact considered a way to know if a boy likes you or not.
Girls are taught to aspire to be pretty
Girls are taught that they only need to be pretty when they grow up, they aren't talked to about college, or about getting a job. They are instead told how pretty they'll look when they are older and how their wedding day and the births of their children will be the happiest days of their life, not the day she receives her college diploma.
Girls are smarter than boys
Boys are taught to think that this is okay
Girls are taught to aspire to be pretty
Girls are taught to aspire to marriage
Boys don't cry
Boys will be boys
The fight against "girly"
Boys are constantly claiming the stupidity of things like One Direction, starbucks, Ugg boots, and the list goes on. Whether or not they think these things are actually stupid doesn’t matter, because girls are constantly being ridiculed for their likes and dislikes. If a girl likes it, a guy can’t like it, in fact he has to make fun of it to prove how much he doesn’t like it and how much of a man he is for not getting the urge to bob his head to a catchy boy band song. Boys are taught to be so against girls that they can’t like anything that girls like. They can’t like pop music, they can’t like romantic movies such as The Notebook or The Titanic, they can’t drink Starbucks coffee without looking like “a basic white girl”, and they can’t have any similarities with a girl and what a lot of girls are interested in. Girls are constantly considered less than boys, which is why men try so hard to go against being like a girl in any way, shape, or form-- boys just can’t be girly.
“Man up” is a phrase that can be used for both boys and girls. Boys are told to man up when they cry, when they are talking about their problems, when they aren’t doing too great at football practice, it’s something that they are told so they hide their feelings, ignore their problems, and get their head in the game. Girls are told to man up because man are perceived as tough and as strong, so sometimes if a girl is being emotional, someone will tell her to man up, and to basically be more like a guy because guys are tough and you aren’t being tough right now. It says that guys always have to be tough and strong, even if that is emotionally and physically impossible, and it says that girls can’t be strong on their own, they have to be compared to a man in order for people to recognize their strength.
You can't play with that
Boys can’t play with barbies, or easy bake ovens. They can’t play with anything pink, and they can’t play with anything sparkly. Girls can’t play with toy guns, or with toy cars. They can’t play with anything that suggests violence, and they certainly can’t play with anything that would cause their dress to get dirty. There are boy aisles that are full of blue and black (manly colors) and then there are girl aisles full of pink and purple (girl colors). Girls grow up knowing that the blue aisle isn't made for them, and boys know that the pink aisle isn't made for them because of how they are constantly told growing up, that they can't play with that.
2) Inequalities of Race and Ethnicity
Wage gap among races
Asian American women made 90% of a white man's earnings
Hispanic and Latina women mode 54% of a white man's earnings
American India women made 59% and so did Alaska Native women
Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islanders women made 64% of a white man's earnings
African American women were paid 64% of a white man's earnings.
Women of color prejudice in workforce
- All Asians are good at math
- Hispanics are unable to speak English well
- All Hispanics are immigrants
- All black people live in the ghettos
- Black people are labeled as members of gangs
- Black people are labeled as criminals
- Black people are labeled as thugs
- Arabs are all terrorists
- A person wearing a hijab is a terrorist
Examples of internalized racism:
- Asian Americans getting eyelid surgery
- People of color not ordering a food they are stereotyped for liking (Asian's and sushi is an example)
- Referring to a person as your first black/Asian/Indian/etc., friend/girlfriend/boyfriend/etc.
- Trying to not act like a criminal just because of your race (example of this would be a black person not wanting to wear baggy clothes or put the hood in their sweatshirt up)
- Skin bleaching
Luckily, movements like the 'black is beautiful' cultural movement are fighting against internalized racism and the typical beauty standards that go against black people and other people of color
The movement points out injustices when it comes to law enforcement and the way that police officers treat black people. If unnecessary aggression towards a black person is displayed by a police officer and if that same aggression wouldn't be applied towards a white person, the movement will call that out and make sure that it does not go unnoticed by the media.
Symbols and Language
Examples of symbols and greetings around the world:
In places such as Europe and Latin America, kisses are used as a greeting to people, but in America, a common way to great your friends is with a hug
A thumbs up in America means good job, but the thumbs up in the middle east is America's equivalent to the middle finger
In the United Kingdom, a peace sign is seen as an insult, while in places like America, the peace sign represents a sign of peace
With a common language, people are able to express themselves with others and share ideas, values, beliefs, knowledge, and many other things through the power of words. Another interesting thing about language is that you are able to see what is important to a culture based off of how many words they have for a certain thing. Like we have many words to describe time and how much time we have and what we spend our time on. We also use many words and phrases to describe feelings, especially love.
When we are exposed to a new language and to a new culture, our reality often changes and we see the world through a new lens.
Norms and Values
Norms that are extremely important and that need to be followed by all members of society are known as mores. The most important more is known as taboo, and if you break this more or norm, it calls for punishment because of how severe it was for you to follow the taboo. The only taboo that is present in all societies is incest.
Culture: How it's different and how it's similar
Subcultures and countercultures also affect similarities and differences. A subculture is a part of the larger society, but differs from the culture in a small way. For example, if a foreigner is affected by American culture a lot about their life could change, but a subculture would be keeping the diet and language of their original culture.
A counterculture is a subculture, but it tries to go against the main culture. An example of this would be a person being a goth or a punk during the hippie movement. People were promoting violence during a time of peaceful movement to against the peace and go against the dominant society, which is why it would be considered a counterculture.
We also judge others in terms of our culture and the rules we have in our culture, which is known as ethnocentrism. An example of this is some religious leaders believing that aspects of religion should be influenced into laws, such as having laws that are based off of the bible's beliefs. While ethnocentrism does offer a sense of belonging amongst a group of people, it also separates people based off of their beliefs and a lot of people will be judged if they don't have the same opinions as another person because of ethnocentrism.
Culture universals are traits that exist in every culture. Example of these are:
- Division of labor
- Family structure
- Class differences
Affects of no socialization
Aspects of socialization
Religion Socialization: Children are able to learn values, morals, and beliefs by attending church. Religion alter's peoples views on sexuality, gender roles, how a child should be taken care of, etc. Church is also a place to just talk to people about faith, so people are able to healthily socialize with others at church and through religion.
School Socialization: Children are taught to rely less on their parents as they attend and spend time at school. There is hidden curriculum taught in schools that teaches children how to display disciple, cooperation, order, as well as conformity. All of those aspects are things that the children will need to display in adulthood and in their future job, which is why they are taught it at a young age. Children at school are praised for getting the right answer and for behaving the right way and this is because if you praise a child for something, they will continue to do it, so the child being praised will continue to behave properly at school if they are praised for it.
Peer Socialization: A peer group is made up of people they are the same age as you, or are near the same age, and you all share similar interests. You can belong to multiple peer groups, such as your church peer group, your soccer team peer group, your school peer group, etc. Peer groups allow kids to further move away from their parents and from adults and now is the time in which kids learn to be different from their parents and they begin to create their own personality away from what their parents have taught them to be. This also helps children feel comfortable with people they may not know fully, and allows them to interact with people outside of their family, as well as interact with larger groups of people.
Mass Media Socialization: Includes movies, books, radio, television, internet, etc. Way of spreading something to the general population through communication. Children will want to follow the people they see on TV, which is why a lot of TV shows are made for kids so they can show them good role models to look up to. If there aren't good role models to look up to on TV, kids will begin to look up to all of the violence that is shown on TV and that could cause some aggressive behavior in the child from watching other people on TV display aggression.
Socialization over time
Childhood: People in need of guidance, protection, and schooling and are very dependent on others
Adolescence: Between childhood and adulthood (teenager). Adolescents face decision making and they are expected to show responsibility and become more independent. Stage in which a person tries to determine who they are, but this can be difficult as they are still a minor, yet they are still close to becoming an adult. Learn cause and effect, how to evaluate, how to listen to adults, and how they compare to other people.
Transitional Adulthood: Young people are living away from their families, but they still use their parents money and rely on them to fund them throughout this phase of life as they are in the 18-29 age group. These adults need their parents to get them through college so they can get a job and stop relying on their money. These adults are expected to get a job, get married, and have kids.
Middle Years: Age 30-49 and a family and job are achieved during this time. Women are expected to have kids or start having kids in this age group before they become too old. This is usually the peak for a lot of people when it comes to their jobs.
Old Age: Being old is what a lot of people become when they are in their 70's. This is when people go through a lot of self evolution and look back on there lives to see if they have any regrets and if they did everything that they wanted to do in life.
Desocialization and Resocialization
After desocialization, resocialization can occur, and this is the process in which people begin to believe in new norms, values, attitudes, and behaviors. People are awarded when they begin to adopt the new values and they are punished when they try and go against them.
Anticipatory socialization is when a person prepares for new norms, values, attitudes, and behaviors, however, unlike desocialization and resocialization, these new norms are being created because the person wants the change and it isn't being forced on them. This type of socialization could occur between stages in the life cycle, especially when a person has a new peer group that all share the same values--a person may change their values to fit in with this new peer group.
5) Social Structure
The two kinds of status are ascribed and achieved. An ascribed status is a position in a social structure that is neither earned nor chosen to be assigned to a person. An example of this is that if a baby is born as a girl, she immediately becomes a daughter. An achieved status is a position that a person earns or chooses. An example could include wanting to become a parent and take on the status of a mother or of a father.
Ascribed statuses are based on age, gender, ethnicity, and race. Achieved statuses are based on accomplishments and choices.
Master statuses can still be ascribed however, as they affect the likelihood of something happening. For example, an ascribed status for a person is that they are female, and that lowers the likelihood of achieving certain statuses, like becoming President of the United States.
There, is however role conflict. Role conflict is when the role expectations for a role in one status clash with the expectations or another status. An example of this could be with a parent, who has a difficult time doing a full time job, as well as caring for a child or multiple children.
Role strain is when a person has trouble meeting the many roles connected with a single status. Role strain applies to school and how students are expected to get straight A's, be in multiple clubs, have a job, going to college fairs, joining a sport, and doing everything they can so they can impress and please colleges when the time comes to apply.
How the topics connect together
How the topics relate to real life
This definition of the word feminism showed the world that feminism is just the belief that women and men are equal to one another, which is why a lot more people all over the world have been proud to claim the title and show the world what it really means to be a feminist. Feminism goes against gender roles and the roles that society has created for women, as well as for men. No one should be treated differently because of what they were born as, and that is what this movement is all about. As more people declare their title as a feminist, such as Adele and Lorde, more people become accepting of the concept, and as more people accept it, the oppressive walls that have been built surrounding women and men that limit them to blue and pink and sports and shopping, will be brought down and then there will be true equality like the equality Adichie was talking about in the song.
Social structure is something that could relate to the current presidential election. The role of a president is to lead a country, and to do what is best for the country. The presidential candidates all have achieved and ascribed status. Hillary Clinton has a very negative ascribed status as a female and many people see her status as a female a reason why she is incapable of becoming a president. This ascribed status for her, as well as for many other women, limits women and limits the perspective of a women. A lot of people don't see Hilary Clinton to be a fit president, not because of her policies, not because of her beliefs, not because of what she wants to do with America, many people see her as unfit simply because she is a women and women are incapable of making rational decisions, so how can they be expected to run a country. Whether people actually agree with her and her policies, she is still a candidate that should be taken just as seriously as all of her other fellow candidates that happen to be men. She deserves to be respected like the male candidates are, and if some people believe that they have a right to judge others, they should judge her policies on whether or not they are what's good for America, not judge her on her gender.