Sociology Project

Madelyn Noyes

Gender Roles

Gender roles refer to the ideas of what society thinks is expected of different genders. Most people think of how women are expected to stay home and take care of the children. This is was mostly seen in the 1950's where the "housewife" ideal was present. However, the beginning of women breaking down barriers started in the 1940's in the war effort. Gender roles usually begin during childhood. Parents nowadays are becoming more aware of this and being more gender neutral with their children. Strong family gender roles are not as common today expect for strict, traditional families, usually in stricter religious societies. Discrimination occurs frequently with those who do not conform to expected gender roles. Due to women breaking down more gender barriers, it has become more acceptable for women to express masculine traits rather than men expressing female traits.


Socialization is the cultural process of learning how to participate in group life. This begins from childbirth throughout someone's whole life. It is extremely important to learn in order to develop the values and beliefs of one's society. Scientists believe that if children do not receive proper socialization by puberty they will not develop correctly. If children do not learn socialization that may not ever learn language. Isolation is what occurs when socialization does not happen. In cases of isolation, re-socialization is the process of re-learning new norms, values beliefs, and customs. Agents of socialization include peers, media, family, friends, and religion.


Culture refers to the knowledge, languages, customs, values, and beliefs of a group of people. Human behaviors are based on culture. It must be learned and developed over time. Culture cannot exist without society, as well as society cannot exist without culture. Instinct would be the opposite of culture, as culture is not unlearned behavior. Culture- shock occurs when someone feels completely unadjusted to a brand new culture. Material culture refers to material objects seen as important in a culture. Nonmaterial culture refers to the nonmaterial aspects of culture.


Norms are rules that define behavior in a society. They explain why people act similarly in certain situations. After norms are learned, they guide behavior subconsciously. Norms change frequently over time. There are three main types of norms. Folkways are norms that lack moral significance. Mores are norms that should be followed by society for moral reasons. Laws are norms that a formally defined and enforced by officials. Taboos are norms that people believe should be punishable for, but they are not actual laws.

Sports and Sociology

Sports are related to sociology by how they affect those involved as fans and players. Sports make fans feel as if they are a part of something bigger. Sports also connect people from around the world because sports are popular worldwide. Players can develop a sense of belonging with their teammates through teamwork. Leadership roles can also be developed by working in a team. Sports have also been a big part in breaking down barriers in society. In the 1940's, the first women's baseball team showed society that women were as capable as men at sports. This was also shown in Jackie Robinson being able to join an all-white team proving that race did not affected how someone played sports.

How are these connected?

These are all related by the ways they affect society. Norms and gender roles describe the ways society believes people should act. Culture and Sports and Sociology both involve the shared values and beliefs in groups of people and societies.

How they apply to Me

Gender Roles- As a girl, I experience gender roles frequently. Dress codes and how girls act around others is more criticized than boys, and is fairly present here in Rochester.

Socialization- I have grown up with the same people my whole life, so most of my peers and I share similar values and beliefs.

Culture- The culture here in Rochester is fairly to similar to one another, so many of my traditions are the same to one another.

Norms- There are various taboos that are present in my group of peers, so often those affect how I act around others.

Sport and Sociology- Rochester is extremely prideful in our sports, and the student section is a good example of how sports can connect people from all different grades.

Where Are They?

In today's current events, culture is becoming more and more present when looking at the presidential election. This has been one of the nastiest elections, and it has really started to show the differences in values between democrats and republicans.

In a historical event, gender roles were very present in America's society during the first few decades of the 20th century. During World War II, with all the men gone to fight the war the women had to step up and take their places. Women had jobs in factories, sales, and a women's baseball league was formed to replace the men's while they were gone. Although the 1950's housewife was a common idea in later years, the women had still proven that they can handle life just as well as the men.

These two aspects are very similar because they define how one person acts based on what is expected from them. They both have specifics expectations for a group of people, and that these groups both have their own values.