Historical perspective• Gardening for the purpose of leisure was reserved for the social elite• Women were regulated mostly to weeding in 16th century to the Victorian era• Women of higher status tending small gardens• For profit gardening was associated with men• Division of labor was based on socio economic status
Historical perspective cont• Flower types and availability favored higher class• Women were regulated to lower form of gardening.• Specialized and exotic plants were reserved for men of the upper class through out much of history.
Current gardening gender gaps• Men are more associated with the grunt work.• Flowers and exotic plants are seen as to feminine for younger males.• Landscaping, mowing the lawn, and tending to more masculine perceived chores are considered manly.
Gardening between young/old males• Old men and young men offer the most stark difference in leisure activity.• As men get older tending a garden becomes more common.• Gender differences dissipate, men become more common in the garden later in life.
Theories on change• Gardening in history was related to upper class white families.• Reserved for the social elite.• Was based on racial as well gender boundaries.• Men and the garden relied on social status• Today its more on gender stereotypes, masculinity vs. femininity.
Traditional ideals of leisure• Gardening is seen as a feminine activity• Growing vegetables and fruits is seen as more masculine• Tending flower gardens is seen as feminine.• Social boundaries separate acceptable leisure activities between the sexes.• Economic boundaries, as well as cultural boundaries also effects what is seen as the norm.
Social structure of gardening• The hierarchy of gardening was based on race.• Gender• Class• Social status• Leisure related to gardening was reserved for the elite.
Continued…• For the middle class to lower class families women were regulated to fertilizing, weeding, jobs men did not want to do.• White upper class heterosexual women, seen gardening as leisure through out much of history.• Gardening for middle to lower class was not considered leisure.
Current gardening trends• Social hierarchal standards dissipate.• Culturally more acceptable for women to garden for leisure rather than sustainability.• Historically men reserved right to garden for leisure and for profit.• Currently men due to the media and advertisement juggernaut have shunned gardening as feminine.
Continued….• Gardening not based on economic status anymore, but rather gender stereotypes.• Social norm being shaped by media rather than culture.• Media demonizing feminism.• Media is drawing a line to separate gender related activates
My reservations• Gardening to me was seen as• Feminine• Labor rather than leisure• Not manly• Time vs. return did not seem worth it
Reflection• Needed to get past stereotypes.• Started to accept it as a masculine activity.• Still did not tend to flowers felt that growing vegetables and providing food was masculine.• Gave me the patience, and gave me time to reflect on my life.• Provided me with me time.
Continued…• Even in gardening gender lines are concrete.• Learned that stereotypical gender prejudice can still exist.• realized that even in leisure labor is involved.• Felt a sense of accomplishment.
References• Bennett, Kate M. "Gender and Longitudinal Changes in Physical Activities in Later Life." Age Ageing (n.d.): n. pag. Print.•• Corlett, Jan L., Ellen A. Dean, and Louis E. Grivetti. "Hmong Gardens: Botanical Diversity in an Urban Setting." Economic Botany 57.3 (2003): 365-79. Print.•• Dines, Gail, and Jean McMahon Humez. Gender, Race, and Class in Media: A Critical Reader. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, 2011. Print.•• Fairbairn, Neil. A Brief History of Gardening. Emmaus, PA: Rodale, 2001. Print.•• Henderson, Karla A. Both Gains and Gaps: Feminist Perspectives on Womens Leisure. State College, PA: Venture Pub., 1996. Print.•• Loudon, John Claudius. An Encyclopedia of Gardening Comprising the Theory and Practice of Horticulture, Floriculture, Arboriculture, and Landscape-gardening ... a General History of Gardening in All Countries ... with Suggestions for Its Future Progress, in the British Isles. London: Longman Rees Orme Brown Green, 1828. Print.•• Munroe, Jennifer. "Gender, Class, And The Art Of Gardening." Prose Studies 28.2 (2006): 197-210. Print.•• Munroe, Jennifer. Gender and the Garden in Early Modern English Literature. Aldershot, England: Ashgate, 2008. Print.•• Nardozzi, Charlie. Vegetable Gardening for Dummies. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2009. Print.•• Russell, Letty M. Inheriting Our Mothers Gardens: Feminist Theology in Third World Perspective. Philadelphia: Westminster, 1988. Print.