Social Construction of Gender

Social construction of gender is the idea that “society and culture create gender roles, and that these roles are what is generally considered ideal or appropriate behaviour for a person of that specific gender.” (Wikipedia)

A good baseline example of this social construction of gender would be the blue and pink hats/blankets that newborn babies are given in the hospital when they are born- blue for boys and pink for girls.

The particular video I’ve included with this video does, I think, a very good job in illustrating this social construction of gender. Society has an idea of how different genders should speak, think, what characteristics each respective gender should embody, and the list goes on. If someone deviates from the norm, they are ridiculed and told to “get back in line” with societal gender expectations. The video shows how human qualities are sectioned off by gender and polarized- one gender embodies certain characteristics and the other does in kind, they do not blend or mix.

I remember being a little girl, I had to wear frilly dresses and bows in my hair. I faced a lot of backlash as I grew older and had an interest in math and sports and less so much with what would be considered “girls” interests (ie dresses and dolls). There’s a lot more to a person than their gender. Or, let me rephrase, a person’s gender does not dictate who they are. We are all unique with our own personalities, likes, dislikes, etc. It is so silly to me that there should be such a strong societal divide concerning what makes a girl and what makes a boy. Are we not all human? We should be accepted as we are. We should stop telling girls they’re not girls and boys they’re not boys if they identify that way and just happen to deviate from what’s accepted. I don’t personally view myself any less female because I like to wear pants and be outside all the time. That’s just me.