Gender Roles Affect Everyone: New Blog Series
By M’Liss DeWald, NCCJ Youth Program Specialist
Gender is a complicated word that has very real impacts in our society. Due to its complexities, we here at the NCCJ will break it down little by little, first focusing on gender roles and the affect they have on everyone. This is not to say that by understanding gender roles you understand all the intricacies of gender and its societal impacts – however it is a launching point.
To explore Gender Roles we will be doing a series that will focus on four areas of gender performativity: School, Toys, Clothes/Beauty and Sports. The series will be in this order: Female Toys, Male Toys, Female Academics/School, Male Academics/School, Female Sports, Male Sports, Female Clothes/Beauty and end with Male Clothes/Beauty. At this point it does not include gender non-conforming or transgender perspectives. We are excited to get the personal perspectives of some our youth on this topic and look forward to hearing your comments.
It’s important to first distinguish that “gender” is different than “sex.” In short, sex refers to your biological differences, which is equal to male and female. And gender is a social construct that society reinforces through assigning roles, activities, expectations and behaviors to males and females and labeling them “masculine” or “feminine.” Gender is not only a social construct but also a performativity – behavior creates your gender. For example when someone says, “walk like a man,” or “throw like a girl” a certain image comes to mind – that is a performance of gender. No one is born knowing how to “walk like a man,” or “throw like a girl,” they are taught what that looks like and either embody it or not. This series will talk about how the social construction and performativity of gender has an impact on all of us.
The National Conference for Community and Justice (NCCJ) does work on gender throughout the year. We specifically cover sexism and genderism through our bulletins (which can be found here on sexism and here on genderism) and through workshops done at ANYTOWN and in our Youth Action Coalition (YAC). In the past we have also visited Action Clubs at school to do workshops and done workshops for organizations or companies through our fee for service program.
The Entire Gender Blog Series:
Monday, August 4 - Gender Blog Series Introduction
Monday, August 11 - Female Gender and Toys
Monday, August 18 - Male Gender and Toys
Monday, August 25 - Female Gender and School
Monday, September 1 - Male Gender and School
Monday, September 8 - Female Gender and Sports
Monday, September 15 - Male Gender and Sports
Monday, September 22 - Female Gender and Body Image
Monday, September 29 - Male Gender and Body Image
About the National Conference for Community and Justice
Formed 1927, NCCJ is a nonprofit human relations organization that promotes inclusion and acceptance by providing education and advocacy while building communities that are respectful and just for all. Celebrating the diversity of races, religions, cultures, genders, abilities, and sexual orientations.
The opinions and information expressed through News Views posts are solely those 0f the individual authors and not representative of NCCJ’s overall stance on related issues unless specified. Any information presented as fact could entail inaccuracies or be incomplete. We encourage open discussion through our blog, and welcome respectful responses from everyone.
For more information on NCCJ’s variety of social justice educational programs, click here.