Theories of Gender Development


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Theories of Gender Development

  1. 1. Theories of Gender Development BrannonGender: Psychological Perspectives Chapter 5
  2. 2. Basic Terms• Gender constancy: the knowledge that gender is a permanent characteristic and will not change with superficial alterations.• Gender identity: individual identification of self as female or male.• Gender labeling: the ability to label self and others as male or female.• Gender role: a set of socially significant activities associated with being male or female.
  3. 3. Basic Gender SymbolsSymbol Derivation Fact Symbol for Denotes a the planet male Mars organism or a man. Symbol for Denotes a the planet female Venus organism or a woman.
  4. 4. Basic Gender SymbolsSymbol Derivation Fact Symbol for Denotes an the planet intersexed Mercury individual. Symbolizes Denotes bisexual “biangles” individuals in Nazi camps
  5. 5. Comparison of Theoriesof Gender DevelopmentGender • Interactions with parents – early childhood • Reinforcement &Differences observationDevelop • Cognitive development • Gender-specific Through schemata • Learning gender scripts
  6. 6. Comparison of Theories of Gender DevelopmentGender • Passively • Choosing modelsParticipation • OrganizingInvolves information • Gender specific schemata • Scripts through social interaction
  7. 7. Comparison of Theoriesof Gender DevelopmentGender • Oedipal period • pre-OedipalDevelopment period Begins • Cultural emphasis • Preschool years • Preschool years • Early preschool
  8. 8. Comparison of Theoriesof Gender DevelopmentGender • Oedipal resolution • Separation fromDevelopment mother Proceeds • Adult knowledge • Series of stages • Schemata • Script components
  9. 9. Comparison of Theoriesof Gender DevelopmentGender • ID same sex parentDevelopment • Adulthood Concludes • ~ Late childhood • Late childhood • When scripts are learned
  10. 10. Comparison of Theoriesof Gender DevelopmentGirls • Very different • Often differentand • Similar cognitivelyBoys • May be different • Different
  11. 11. Comparison of Horney and FreudConcept Horney FreudUnconscious Yes YesEarly Yes YesChildhoodGender Yes Yesdifferences
  12. 12. Comparison of Horney and FreudConcept Horney FreudEnvy Womb envy Penis envyMasculinity ID with Feeling ofcomplex father inferiorityMasochism Abnormal for Inevitable M/F for F: abnormal in M.
  13. 13. Nancy Chodorow-Feminist Psychoanalytic Theory Stage Description Freud Infancy: No One with the Boys separate Sense of Self world (mostly from mother. mother). Girls stay connected. Early Separation Differences Childhood: from mother: are due to Sense Girls have Oedipal v. easier task. Electra of Self conflict.
  14. 14. Nancy Chodorow-Feminist Psychoanalytic TheoryStage Description ResultMasculine Boys have Boys must rejectsense of already femininity &self identified develop a with mother. different identityFeminine Gender Girls neversense of similarity is separate fromself know by mother as mothers & completely as boys daughters. do.
  15. 15. Comparison of Freud and ChodorowStage Freud ChodorowPre- No gender •Boys rejectOedipal differences at femininity this stage. •Girls retainOedipal Genital Gender differences differences prompt have already personality emerged. differences.
  16. 16. Ellyn KaschakPsychodynamic Theory• Parallels personality development of Antigone• Oedipus’s daughter (and half-sister).• Once blind, Antigone became guide & caretaker to her father.• She sacrificed an independent life to care for him.
  17. 17. Ellyn KaschakPsychodynamic Theory• Oedipus considered it his ‘right’ to have this level of devotion.• Antigone, then, is symbolic of the inevitable fate of the good daughter in the patriarchal family.• Women are considered men’s possessions & woman are subservient to them.
  18. 18. Male Outcomes ofPersonality DevelopmentPhase Not Resolved Resolved Patriarchal Nonpatriarchal Power: Major Power: Not goal major goalOedipal Women seen as Women seen(men) extensions of as self independent. Sexually self- Sexually centered unselfish
  19. 19. Female Outcomes ofPersonality DevelopmentPhase Not Resolved Resolved Accept Reject subservient subservience role Passive & Assertive & dependent independentAntigone Male defined Define own(women) sexuality sexuality Deny own needs Express own needs
  20. 20. Patriarchal Terrorism• ~ 1-3 million women are physically abused by their husband or boyfriends annually.• In 2000, intimate partner homicides accounted for 33.5% of the deaths of women and >4% of men’s deaths.• 3.3-10 million children witness some form of domestic violence annually.• Pregnant women are more likely to be victims of homicide than to die of any other cause.
  21. 21. Turning Point of the Lehigh Valley•• Abuse can be verbal, physical, emotional, sexual or economic.• An abused person can be male or female, gay or straight, of any age, race, class, culture, religion or occupation.• Violence is a crime. You are not alone. We can help. Call our 24-hour hotline at 610- 437-3369.    
  22. 22. "I NEVER BELIEVED SHED ABUSE ME."• Lesbian violence is:  • Any behavior which is adopted by a woman to control you, which causes physical, sexual or psychological damage or causes you to live in fear.  Physical and sexual violence are the most obvious forms of violence.• Pushing, biting, hitting, punching and using a weapon are all forms of violence.  Forcing you to participate in sex is violence.  Threats are a form of violence.  
  23. 23. Ways Same-GenderDomestic Violence is Unique• Partner may threaten to ‘out’ the other.• Assumption that lesbian, bi and gay abuse must be "mutual." • Utilizing existing services either means lying or hiding the gender of the batterer.• Telling heterosexuals can reinforce the belief that lesbian, bi and gay relationships are "abnormal."
  24. 24. Social Learning Theory• Gender role derives from French for roll• Role denotes expected, socially encouraged patterns of behavior exhibited by individuals in specific situations.• Emphasizes the influence of the environment.• A variation of traditional learning theory.
  25. 25. Traditional Learning Theory• Learning: A change in behavior that is the result of experience or practice.• Operant conditioning: A form of learning based on applying reinforcement and punishment.
  26. 26. Traditional Learning Theory• Reinforcer: Any stimulus that increases the probability that a behavior will recur.• Punishment: any stimulus that decreases the probability that a behavior will recur.• Each individual has a unique learning history.
  27. 27. Results of Reinforcement and Punishment for Gender- Related BehaviorsBehavior Consequences ResultLittle girl Receives Plays with dollplays with praise again.dollLittle girl Scolded for Does not playplays with choosing a with trucktruck truck again.
  28. 28. Results of Reinforcement and Punishment for Gender- Related BehaviorsBehavior Consequences ResultLittle boy Scolded for Does not playplays with choosing a with doll againdoll dollLittle boy Receives Plays withplays with praise for toy truck againtruck choice
  29. 29. Social Learning Theory Includes Cognitive Processes• Observation is more important than reinforcement• Learning is cognitive• Performance is behavioral• Separates learning from performing learned behaviors• Investigates factors that affect both.
  30. 30. Gender Children & Television• Oriented toward boys• Males outnumber females 3:1• Females < visible, important, active• Females > polite, romantic, supportive• 1990’s: females > independent, assertive, intelligent, competent, responsible & < emotional, tentative, & sensitive.
  31. 31. Gender Children & Television• Pokemon cartoons: – Some consistent with stereotypical gender depictions – Others vary from gender stereotypes – “Good” Pokeman trainers employ stereotypes – “Bad” Pokemon trainers behave in nonstereotypical ways.
  32. 32. Gender, Children,Television, and Advertising• History of biased gender portrayals – Changes have also occurred (Larson, 2001).• Number of girls equals number of boys in commercials.• Still convey clear messages re: toys & gender• Few offer attractive portrayals of children deviating from gender stereotypes (Pike & Jennings, 2005).
  33. 33. Research in Gender, Children, & Television• Children not only notice but are also influenced by gender portrayals in cartoons & in advertisements.• Even young children watch a great deal of television (Christakis, et al.,2004).• TV provides many more opportunities to observe stereotypical gender behaviors than actual experience does (Bussed & Bandura, 1999).
  34. 34. Research in Gender, Children, & Television• Children observe many models• They notice the consistencies and overlook the exceptions• As same-sex models exhibit a behavior, the more likely behaviors come to be gendered. – These behaviors may have no direct relationship to sex. – Children become selective in their modeling.
  35. 35. Modeling & Reinforcement• Even before birth parents often have a preference for a boy or a girl. – More often for a boy – Parents interact differently with sons & daughters.• Young children do not show strong preferences for gender-typical toys (Wood et al., (2002)• Parents tend to choose gender-typical toys.
  36. 36. Social Learning via Parenting• Fagot & Hagan (1991) – Fathers gave fewer positive responses to their 18-month-old sons who chose ‘girls’ toys.’ – Mothers spend more time in communication with their daughters.• Wood et al. (2002) – Showed fewer differences in parental play. – Tendency to choose “masculine” toys for boys was still evident.
  37. 37. Cognitive Theories• Cognitive Developmental Theory• Gender Schema Theory• Gender Script Theory
  38. 38. Cognitive Developmental Theory • Gender identity is a cognitive concept that children learn as part of the process of learning about the physical world & their bodies.
  39. 39. Cognitive Developmental Theory • Children younger than 2 have no concept of gender • Cannot consistently label themselves or others as male or female.
  40. 40. Gender Constancy• Among the last types of gender knowledge to be acquired.• Gender Constancy is an understanding that gender is a permanent personal characteristic that will not change.
  41. 41. Gender Schema Theory• An extension of cognitive developmental theory• Explains gender identity in terms of schemata – Cognitive structures that underlie complex concepts. – Behavior changes to conform to gender roles.
  42. 42. Gender Script Theory• An extension of gender schema theory.• Children learn about gender by acquiring scripts – Ordered sequences of behavior with a gender stereotype component. – Organize knowledge & facilitate social relationships.
  43. 43. Problems• None of the theories explain all data from gender development research.• Social learning theory does not address the fact that children acquire a pattern of gender knowledge that social learning does not predict. – Children learn gender labeling b/f toy & clothing preferences develop.
  44. 44. Problems• Cognitive developmental theory does not allow for a different pattern of development for boys and girls.• Gender Schema does not specifically address differences in schemata between girls and boys.
  45. 45. Problems• Findings that support cognitive changes can be applicable to both cognitive developmental theory as well as gender schema theory.• The necessity for gender constancy as the basis for developing all other gender knowledge has not been substantiated.
  46. 46. Gender Flexibility• Understanding the development of gender flexibility is a goal for researchers in late adolescence. – Research has shown that this is a time during which individuals gain flexibility of gender beliefs. – According to cognitive developmental theory children undergo no additional cognitive changes after early adolescence.