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Gender - Essay Example

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Before going on to the discussion on development, the gender itself should be discussed. Gender should be understood separately from the concept of sex. "The first question is, "what is gender" Is it a sociological construct, a biological construct, or both, and what about the research design indicates how gender is being conceptualized" (Reeder, 1996).
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Gender Essay
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Download file to see previous pages... So, word gender is used because the word does not restrict its connotation in terms of biological differences but it also takes into account psychological, social, emotional and other differences as well. Also experts and critics argue that women and men also can be diverse within their own groups. An educated black female will have different communication style then a female who is a high school drop out. Similarly there could be many variations among males as well. Some men may act in a typical manner but the trend now especially with the changes in media is towards a different behavioral pattern of men towards women as well as towards themselves. (Rolfe, H. 2006)
The relationship between men and women should also be seen in social context and should not be strictly defined in terms of stereotyped & physiological characteristics. The relationship between the two groups has evolved both in public and private domains over the years and the process of evolution will continue. The two groups exist with each other and are also interdependent for their survival as well as success. Putting all the emphasis on one leaving the other group does not seem to be feasible idea when two groups cannot be entirely segregated in a social context. Extra focus in women and leaving the perspective of men would not lead to the formulation of a comprehensive development policy. (Blazina, C. & Watkins, E. 2000).

Gender & Development

Development policies have a history of including women specifically to its goals in the past as women folk have been considered a marginalized segment of the society requiring special attention. Market capitalism not only transformed the global economy but also intensified inequalities in the poorest regions of the world. Therefore, development policies had in the past terms like 'Women in Development' (WID) and 'Women and Development' (WAD). However, with the passage of time, the terms changed into 'Gender and Development' (GAD) more geared towards gender equality. Despite this change a new wave of criticism has emerged that highlights that the development goals seem to sideline men and focus heavily on women. Men are generally ignored in the discussion on development and most of the time it's the men who are seen as an impediment in the development of and empowerment of women. (Chung, S,2005)

The Stereotyping Menace

The issue of stereotypes has not only affected women but it has also created an adverse impact on policy decisions related to men. Self-centered, impolite, promiscuous, aggressive, drunkards and patriarchal are some of the conception or rather generalization about men. Even though women were given opportunities to work but the docile, weak and shy stereotypes also affect the kind of work given to them while the stereotypes of men being strong and decisive get them prominent positions. Some works are given to men and are considered too manly for women to do. For example, women could be given quality control work or simple tasks of packing etc. while men are assigned more mechanical works. Women are generally restricted to the non-technical jobs while technical fields are open for men. Sometimes cultures themselves pose big problems in development. Some cultural aspects in their historical background have also been problematic. The change in cultural ideas is a big development challenge. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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