Doing Gender: In what ways do you “do gender appropriately”?

In sociology, doing gender is being exactly what one was born to be. Gender is not something fixed, that is, it explains that someone does not necessarily to be female to behave like one. An example is when a man does things the society expects him to be; and women doing as the community has thought perfect for them. Therefore, doing gender is basically creating a difference between male and female, masculinity and femininity (Schaefer, 2017). Thus, it is doing what the society has already designed for people, and not necessarily biologically-based. It becomes so routine that people just do it without thinking about it.

I participate in doing gender every day, either consciously or unconsciously. In today’s society, women’s gender roles have substantially changed. For instance, I have found myself getting equal privileges in leadership positions as men, as being able to tackle activities which were otherwise thought to be “manly” like driving my husband in my car. It has been natural to find myself taking motherly or other traditional roles such as house maintenance, even when I am a working professional (Schaefer, 2017).

However, I have also found myself violating gender roles by taking male-assumed roles. As a class president, I have given orders to male classmates, which breaks two traditional male roles: leadership and taking control (Schaefer, 2017). While I have received a good reaction from my female counterparts, the male students have not reacted well to this, and sometimes I have been given an express criticism from some people.

Below is the question I answered:

Sociologists describe gender roles as learned patterns of behavior that a society expects of men and women.  In other words, what we know as masculinity is a set of qualities that we expect to find in a typical man and femininity a set of qualities we expect to find in a typical woman.  Increasingly we are becoming aware that there may not be only one typical package of qualities that make up being female or male.  Some sociologists prefer to speak of the “performance of gender” since more and more men and women are performing roles once considered the domain of the other gender.

In your essay response this week, please respond to the following:

  1. In what ways do you “do gender appropriately”?   In what ways do you violate traditional gender norms?  Discuss how these behaviors make you feel and how others react to them.