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BGDG-172: Gender Sensitization: Society and Culture

BGDG-172: Gender Sensitization: Society and Culture

IGNOU Solved Assignment Solution for 2022-23

If you are looking for BGDG-172 IGNOU Solved Assignment solution for the subject Gender Sensitization: Society and Culture, you have come to the right place. BGDG-172 solution on this page applies to 2022-23 session students studying in BAG, BAHIH, BAPSH, BAPCH, BAPAH, BSCANH, BAEGH, BAPFHMH courses of IGNOU.

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Assignment Code: BGDG-172/ASST /TMA / 2022-23

Course Code: BGDG-172

Assignment Name: Gender Sensitization: Society and Culture

Year: 2022-2023

Verification Status: Verified by Professor


Section A


Answer the following in about 500 words each. 2×20


1. Describe the terms masculinity and femininity in India? Do you think it shapes gender roles? Explain.

Ans) Masculinity: The Latin words "masculinus" and "masculus" are the source of the word "masculinity." The term was initially used to refer to "male sex" in the 14th century. The word is more frequently used to allude to male qualities. Powerfulness, strength, force, manhood, and manliness are traits associated with men.


In the 1960s and 1970s, research on masculinities recognised that perceived and internalised characteristics shape masculine identity. The development of masculine traits like aggression, ambition, intellectual prowess, and assertiveness may be influenced by cultural norms and values learned through socialisation. The societal production of boys' bodies was covered in Raewyn Connell's scholarly essay from 1979. Boys prioritise sports during their years in school.


Femininity: The qualities, behaviours, look, features, characteristics, and postures associated with women have been culturally produced. It is manufactured and socially produced rather than being natural. According to French philosopher Simone de Beauvoir, a woman "is not born, but rather becomes," According to Judith Butler's performativity theory, the illusion of femininity is created by repeated acts of performance, which becomes naturalised and creates gender and feminine qualities/identities.


The focus of the feminine study is on how neoliberalism, culture, caste, and other social systems restrict women's independence, opportunities, and experience of oppression and gender inequality. For instance, women have recently been the main driver behind employment in the European Union. There is still a pay difference between the sexes. Women make up the majority of the world's poor. Women's participation in food production is also well demonstrated by Esther Boserup's research on African agricultural patterns in her book, "Women's Role in Economic Development."

A gender role, also known as a sex role, is a social role encompassing a range of behaviours and attitudes that are generally considered acceptable, appropriate, or desirable for a person based on that person's sex. Gender roles are usually centered on conceptions of masculinity and femininity, although there are exceptions and variations. The specifics regarding these gendered expectations may vary among cultures, while other characteristics may be common throughout a range of cultures. As well as cultural influence, gender roles are partially informed by biological and genetic factors. Gender roles influence a wide range of human behaviour, often including the clothing a person chooses to wear, the profession a person pursues, and the personal relationships a person enters. Various groups, most notably feminist movements, have led efforts to change aspects of prevailing gender roles that they believe are oppressive or inaccurate.


Throughout history spouses have been charged with certain societal functions. With the rise of the New World came the expected roles that each spouse was to carry out specifically. Husbands were typically working farmers - the providers. Wives were caregivers for children and the home. However, the roles are now changing, and even reversing. Societies can change such that the gender roles rapidly change. The 21st century has seen a shift in gender roles due to multiple factors such as new family structures, education, media, and several others.


A 2003 survey by the Bureau of Labour Statistics indicated that about 1/3 of wives earn more than their husbands. With the importance of education emphasized nationwide, and the access of college degrees, women have begun furthering their educations. Women have also started to get more involved in recreation activities such as sports, which in the past were regarded to be for men. Family dynamic structures are changing, and the number of single-mother or single-father households is increasing. Fathers are also becoming more involved with raising their children, instead of the responsibility resting solely with the mother.

2. Describe the relationship of labour force participation, economy and gender question as a key focus. Support your argument by providing suitable examples.

Ans) Although gender disparity is a serious human problem, it also has significant effects on employment, productivity, GDP growth, and inequality. Without addressing gender inequities in society, India's women will not be able to realise their economic potential. India has the lowest contribution of women to GDP of any area in the world, falling below the global average of 37%. If women in India participated in paid work in the market economy on an equal basis with men, eliminating the current differences in labour-force participation rates, hours worked, and representation within each sector, India's economy would experience the highest relative boost of any region in the world.


Since equal participation in the labour market for men and women ultimately comes down to personal preference, it seems improbable that all of the obstacles will be removed within that time span. It is impossible to consider women's roles in the workplace in isolation from their roles in society. In order for women to reach their full economic potential, gender gaps must be closed in both the workplace and in society at large since equality in one area inevitably leads to equality in another. In both urban and rural areas, women's labour force participation is much lower than men's, according to data from surveys conducted by India's National Sample Survey Office. India's female labour-force participation rate is only 21% in urban areas and 36% in rural areas, according to data for the population aged 15 and older, compared to 76 and 81 percent for men.


Compared to 59 percent of men, around 75% of women work in rural regions, particularly in agriculture. Men are more likely to be business owners in the unorganised sector, whereas women are more likely to be salaried employees or unpaid caregivers. Women are more likely to own small businesses than men to own large ones. Typically, women work in manual labour and unskilled jobs. Most women who work for themselves as independent contractors do so from home, where they manufacture goods for sale. With the division of the labour force, there is a hierarchy of poverty risk, with a concentration of women in occupations with high rates of poverty.


According to the Global Gender Gap Report, many people believe that women are paid less than men for the same job. This tendency appears to be supported by an analysis of the 68th Round National Sample Survey's (NSSO) wage data by occupation for India; regardless of professional level, women are paid on average 30% less than their male colleagues.


The MC Kinsey Global Institute discovered a gender disparity in leadership among Indian women using NSSO data. Compared to 14 percent of men, just 7% of women with tertiary educations work as senior officials. In a similar vein, women hold only 38% of professional technical positions. In India, just 5% of company boards are made up of women. This means that only 400 women serve on the boards of the 9,000 publicly traded companies in the nation. Given that 200 of them are family-owned businesses, these numbers could not be entirely accurate. So, just a dismal fraction of women have truly ascended the corporate ladder.


By the month of October of the same year, corporations listed on the National Stock Exchange were required by the Securities and Exchange Board of India to add at least one woman director to their boards. The adoption of more women-friendly policies would be ensured by the presence of a required female board member. As of April 2015, more than 200 businesses have disobeyed the regulation, which resulted in fines being imposed. This demonstrates the prevalent perception of women's employment possibilities.


Section B


Answer the following questions in about 250 words each. 3×100


3. Critically evaluate the role of the family from gender lens.

Ans) When parents have a new baby, the first question they typically ask is whether they have a girl or a boy. Children’s gender assignment becomes a powerful social identity that shapes children’s lives. During early childhood, girls and boys spend much of their time in the home with their families and look to parents and older siblings for guidance. Parents provide children with their first lessons about gender. Possible ways that parents might influence children’s gender development include role modelling and encouraging different behaviours and activities in sons and daughters. One of the challenges for researchers studying parental socialization is to separate the influences of parents on children and the influences of children on parents.


Parents are the first source of exposure of societal stereotypes that kids receive, starting from colour of their room to toys they play with, what to do and what not to do. Expectations for children's future adult lives, like financial success or future care giving, may lead parents to encourage certain behaviours in children. However, most parental behaviours remain uninfluenced by the gender of the child, including speaking to, playing, teaching, and caretaking.


Family dynamics can especially influence gender specialization. Parents of sons are more likely to express conservative gender role views than parents of daughters, with fathers emphasizing the paternal breadwinning role for males. The effects of parental expectations of gender roles can especially be seen in the role children play in household duties. Girls generally do more housework than boys and the type of housework assigned to children largely depends on gender. Thus, household dynamics further advance gender role expectations on children.


Children's toy preferences are significantly related to parental sex-typing, such as girls playing with dolls and boys participating in sports. While both fathers and mothers encourage traditional gender roles in their children, fathers tend to encourage these roles more frequently than mothers. Parents choose activities that they believe their children will enjoy and value. By choosing their children's activities, parents are directly influencing their gender role views and preferences onto their children and shaping expectations.


4. What is Sexual Harassment at Workplace. Examine its forms.

Ans) Sexual harassment at work is a serious problem. It can hurt the health and well-being of workers. It can make workers less productive. It can increase employee absenteeism and turnover. In this publication, we call it “workplace sexual harassment.” There are two types of workplace sexual harassment. The first type is called “hostile work environment” sexual harassment, and the second is called “quid pro quo” sexual harassment.


Hostile work environment sexual harassment can happen in two ways:  Someone you work with makes you the target of unwelcome sexually suggestive or demeaning comments, repeated and unwelcome requests for dates, offensive gestures, offensive touching, jokes or pranks, intimidating behaviours, or pornographic materials. This behaviour is directed at you because of your gender status because you are a woman, a man, or transgender.


These offenses must be severe and/or pervasive. This means that the harassment occurs often enough to affect your ability to do your job well OR the level of harassment is so bad that even one incident is enough to affect your ability to do your job well. You must also show that your employer is responsible for the harassment either directly or indirectly. This includes conduct by your employer’s customers or vendors. For example, if one of your co-workers or a frequent customer makes offensive remarks, you have to show how your workplace is responsible for allowing their bad behaviour.


Quid pro quo sexual harassment happens when a supervisor or other manager asks or demands sexual contact from you in return for employment benefits or promotions. It can still be sexual harassment even if you didn’t say “no.” If you felt pressured to have sexual contact because you were embarrassed to say no, or afraid you would lose your job, or afraid you would be punished at work, then your sexual contact could have been a form of illegal harassment. Your gender status does not have to be the only reason you were singled out for this unfair treatment, but it must be a large part of the reason you were harassed.


5. Write in your own words the ‘construction of a girl child’ with suitable examples.

Ans) The socialisation of a girl child in patrilineal and patriarchal civilizations like India is covered in the book The Construction of a Girl Child. This section illustrates the challenges a girl encounters as she learns to socialise as a woman. Dube describes the socialisation process as a type of gender socialisation in which men and women are created as gendered subjects. Language, rituals, rites, and practises serve to generate these gendered subjects.


In Indian households, the idea of gender difference starts in the realm of procreation because both the mother and the father play different roles in this process. According to cultural belief, the ground symbolises the mother and provides the seed, while the father is said to be the one who plants the seed. Through family, marriage, and kinship, these culturally conceived role distinctions are maintained. Family and kinship are therefore essential to comprehending gender indoctrination.


Girl Child and the Natal Home


The construction of femininity is a continuous and complex process and is conveyed through language, proverbs, and rituals. The context of natal home for both married and unmarried daughters is widely used in the form of proverbs in the process of socialization. The desire for a boy child is explicit in the day- today conversation in forms of ‘’speech’ ‘’saying’’. For instance, parents who are having only daughters are often perceived in a situation where the ‘future is black as they are not having any support.’ Similarly, the parental home is always referred to as a temporary shelter for girls.


Therefore, girls grow up with the notion of having their own home in future after marriage. Proverbs and rituals give the realization of this inevitable fact of transferring the girl’s membership from her natal home to the home of her husband. Dube documented some of the proverbs spoken in various parts of India. In Odisha, there is a saying that equates ‘’daughter with ghee.” The meaning of the proverb that is both are valuable; however, both start to stink if not disposed of in right time.


Section C


Answer the following questions in about 100 words each. 5×6


6. Write a note on patriarchy.

Ans) Patriarchy is the rule of men or fathers. It is regarded as a type of institution. The patriarchal structures maintain male dominance and devalue women. The prevailing power relations in the society operate at several levels and discriminate against women and girls on all fronts. In addition to limiting possibilities and diminishing women's agency, this prejudice may also result in violence against women. The public realm is for men, and the private sphere is for women, according to patriarchy, which also clearly defines these boundaries.


The public-private divide limits women's freedom of movement and confines them to their homes. It further requires women to fulfil household duties such as being a wife and mother. It also limits women's access to political office and decision-making positions. The impact of these limitations on women's economic independence and access to education is significant. In societal systems like families, society, politics, the government, the media, and religion, patriarchal norms are common. In a patriarchal society, patrilineage refers to the passing of wealth from father to son. Women in the patriarchal culture and patrilocal system


7. What is radical feminism.

Ans) Radical Feminist theory analyses the structures of power which oppress the female sex. Its central tenet is that women as a biological class are globally oppressed by men as a biological class. We believe that male power is constructed and maintained through institutional and cultural practices that aim to bolster male superiority through the reinforcement of female inferiority.

One such manifestation of the patriarchy is gender, which we believe to be a socially constructed hierarchy that functions to repress female autonomy and has no basis in biology. Radical Feminists also critique all religions and their institutions, and other practices that promote violence against women such as prostitution, pornography and FGM. The subjugation of women is a social process that has no basis in biology or any other pretext, and thus can and should be challenged and dismantled.


8. What are reproductive rights of Indian women?

Ans) The Indian perspective on reproductive rights has had to additionally take account of several other inequalities and contradictions in society. On one hand, traditional feudal society has sought to regulate every aspect of women’s lives. Religion, caste and cultural values have played important roles in defining and controlling women’s fertility. And, sharp class contradictions have not only created, but also heightened inequalities with a direct adverse impact on women’s health.


On the other hand, the history of colonialism has compounded the situation further by contributing to the systematic destruction of indigenous structures of healing and health systems, and imposing allopathy or ‘modern western medicine’ as the norm. In the present scenario of economic liberalisation, this legacy has received a new lease of life, resulting in the exploitation of Indian markets and people by multinational pharmaceutical companies. Coupled together, these factors are causing rural-urban divides to sharpen further, creating ever-increasing gaps in development and planning, access to resources and opportunities. Overarching this scenario is the population control agenda of the first world that is dictated through international financial institutions and implemented through Indian population programmes and policies.


9. Define productive and reproductive work.

Ans) Within the discussions of gender and development, there has always been a propensity to emphasise unpaid economic activity. Women's Role in Economic Development, a book by Danish economist Ester Boserup, emphasises the value of women to the agricultural economy. In particular, Sub-Saharan Africa was highlighted as the largest global region of "female farming systems," where women utilising traditional hoe technology assumed a significant role in food production.


Furthermore, Boserup proposed a link between women's position in respect to men and the role they played in agricultural output. Her art portrayed women as contributing members of society rather than mere beneficiaries. The emphasis on the importance of reproduction is one of the most common themes of the current feminist movement. Women around the world perform second and third shift domestic work unpaid. Unpaid labour involves caring for children, the elderly, and ailing family members both temporarily and permanently. It also includes housework, such as cooking meals for the family, cleaning the house, and fetching water and fuel. In India, women perform about ten times as much unpaid care work as males.


10. What is mass media?

Ans) Mass media refers to a diverse array of media technologies that reach a large audience via mass communication. The technologies through which this communication takes place include a variety of outlets.


Broadcast media transmit information electronically via media such as films, radio, recorded music, or television. Digital media comprises both Internet and mobile mass communication. Internet media comprise such services as email, social media sites, websites, and Internet-based radio and television. Many other mass media outlets have an additional presence on the web, by such means as linking to or running TV ads online or distributing QR codes in outdoor or print media to direct mobile users to a website.


In this way, they can use the easy accessibility and outreach capabilities the Internet affords, as thereby easily broadcast information throughout many different regions of the world simultaneously and cost-efficiently. Outdoor media transmit information via such media as AR advertising; billboards; blimps; flying billboards; placards or kiosks placed inside and outside buses, commercial buildings, shops, sports stadiums, subway cars, or trains; signs; or skywriting. Print media transmit information via physical objects, such as books, comics, magazines, newspapers, or pamphlets.

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