What is Gender Stereotype
“Maa, I want to be a chef when I grow up. I love to cook.”, he said enthusiastically.
“Boys don’t cook! My raja beta you’re gonna be a great engineer my son”, commanded his mother.
“Daddy I’ll become a businessman like you when I start working”, with glitters in her eyes she said to her father.
“You’ll be a businessman? A man? Haha! No no that’s a man’s job dear, you can study and be like your mother. Look how well she handles the house by herself”, commented her grandmother.
“Congratulations Sharma Ji it’s a girl! Start collecting money for her marriage.”
And a million dreams were crushed because of this gender-stereotypical society we live in because all we ever think of is ‘log kya kahenge’ and we never let our children open their wings to fly.
A stereotype is “…a fixed, over-generalized belief about a particular group or class of people.” (Cardwell, 1996).
Gender stereotype refers to the stereotypes that exist in society about gender roles and behavior.
The mindset that has been passing through generations that women make the bread while the men earn it or that women take care of children and cook food while the men hunt food and protect the cave is what gender stereotype simply is.
WHY DOES THIS GENDER STEREOTYPE EXIST?
Gender stereotypes exist because gradually people or the society becomes accustomed that these are the norms or the guidelines or the rules to fit effectively in the society and they keep practising them and passing them to the coming generations without thinking logically about it a bit.
They exist because the society has made up an image of the gender roles and those who fit in this image are accepted in the society while the others are considered rebels.
The extent of these stereotypes is that men and women are expected to behave in a certain manner. The women are expected to be modest, quiet, delicate, caring, and empathetic while the men are expected to be strong, tough, and not very emotional. If either of the genders behaves otherwise, they’re frowned upon.
HOW GENDER STEREOTYPES AFFECT PEOPLE?
When people are assigned limits to their thoughts and life, they have little choice to be their own selves. And when people cannot be their own selves, they suffocate.
In a stereotypical world, a perfect woman is assumed to be fair, slim, and physically healthy. She is expected to like pink colour, makeup, serving others, and doing household chores. She is supposed to cook, clean, have babies, and dedicate her entire life to her family. She is expected to sacrifice her happiness for that of her family happily without thinking of herself.
Whereas, a man is expected to be rough and tough, athletic, and hard like a rock that doesn’t break ever. He is assumed to be manly, like blue colour, be able to do physical hard work, like politics, involved in sports, and earn enough to get a roof under his head and food for his belly.
Now assume that a woman wants to play sports or join politics or be athletic or a man wants to do makeup or do chores of the house.. what do they do? They’ll have this enormous pressure from everyone because their choices are different from the ones chosen for them. They’ll be considered taboo or a rebel or a bad influence on society.
They feel anxious about being different from others in their group and sometimes people end up in depression or have panic attacks due to the same.
These norms greatly affect others because sometimes they are forced to accept them. They are forced to act in a certain way and behave like a certain person it makes them belittle themselves and think low of their self, this leads to self-pity and they aren’t able to love or accept who they truly are.
HOW TO MAKE A CHANGE?
We have come a long way from sati pratha to divorces being considered normal. We cannot agree that it’s a long long way to go ahead but we cannot deny that we have made some progress too.
- Activism has played a key role in changing these stereotypes.
- Education has also played a great role. The educated youth has the ability to move pillars and they have successfully moved some pillars of gender stereotypes.
- People have finally shown the courage to show what they TRULY DESIRE and try to achieve it.
- SOCIAL MEDIA platform has been a place for people to voice their opinions and stand for what they actually believe.
Other Important Articles
- WHAT ARE THE STEREOTYPES? Nature and Causes
- How does the media portray stereotypes and how it influences us
- WALKING THROUGH A LANE CALLED FEMINISM
- Gender roles in our society
- Taboos in Our Society – THE GAMBLE OF TABOOS
Amazing article…keep it up
Thank you so much!!
very well written, so proud of you!
Thank you so much loveee!! ❤
Thanks a lot!!
Thanks a lot!!
hii Hiba Javed, it is well return but you could add research in the article as well such as.
In 3 studies, the current research measured prescriptive and descriptive gender stereotypes for various age groups, including children, adults, and the elderly. In all studies, participants rated how desirable and typical it was for different target groups to possess a list of characteristics. The list of characteristics included a variety of traits and behaviors, many of which have not been used in past research on adult stereotypes, to cover the types of behaviors that may be more relevant to childhood. For example, research on the parental treatment of boys vs. girls demonstrated higher levels of pressure for gendered interests and activities rather than traits (e.g., Lytton and Romney, 1991).
Through this method, the current research attempts to measure prescriptive gender stereotypes of toddlers, elementary-aged children, adolescents, young adults, adults, and the elderly to compare the content and strength of these stereotypes and answer several questions. In particular, assuming that gender stereotypes toward children and the elderly are also prescriptive in nature, current research addresses how both the content and magnitude of prescriptive gender stereotypes changes across age groups. Specifically, based on the emphasis on policing boys’ behavior in childhood, one might expect that prescriptive stereotypes would be stronger for boys than adult men. Alternatively, these stereotypes may remain strong across age groups. Conversely, however, prescriptive feminine stereotypes may start weaker for girls and increase with age. Because descriptive stereotypes were also measured, prescriptive stereotypes can be compared to the typicality of each characteristics in males and females. Secondly, the research compares the number and magnitude of PPS and NPS for males and females within each age group to answer the question of whether males are more restricted than females in their behavior. Participants also answered a direct question comparing the desirability of stereotype violating behavior in males vs. females. Research suggests greater restrictions for males are likely for children, but the difference in strength and magnitude of prescriptive gender stereotypes has not been directly tested for specific age groups of children or for adult or elderly stereotypes.
keep it up
could have used pictures
Such an interesting article! Great job 🙂
Very informative :))
It’s really amazing I am really impressed by the way of your writing may I get some tips . But it’s really nice and the topic that you chose to write on is also very good as people need to understand that any one can do any job regarding any gender . This was Informative. I hope you write more stuff like this♥️
Very well conceptulaized!!
Looking forward to more of your work!!