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Flashcards in gender Deck (34)
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- 1970 equal pay act
- 1975 sex discrimination act (now under the 2010 equality act)
these laws have helped to ensure a decrease in the gender pay gap and a rise in female employment
some women are breaking through ' glass ceilings' (an invisible barrier that keeps them out of higher roles)


the impact of feminism

the rise in the feminist movement in the 1960s meat that women have been given more rights in all areas of social life
instead of being seen as having to be a 'housewife' and unequal to men, women no have more opportunities

McRobbie study of girls magazines - in the 1970s magazines emphasised the importance of marriage wheres now they contain images of assertive independent women


changes in the family

- increase in divorce
- more lone parent families
- smaller families
- increase in cohabitation

these changes have had a knock on effect on girls attitudes to education in a variety of ways, pushing them to work harder in school


changing ambitions

changes in families, the law and employment have influenced a change in how girls see their futures

Sharp interviewed girls in the 1970s and 90s and found there was a shift in how girls saw their futures
in 1974 they had low aspirations as they saw education as unfeminine ambition was seen as unattractive and their priorities were love marriage husbands and children
by the 1990s this changed, girls saw their futures as including a career and being less dependant on a man, marriage and children were not a major part of their life plan


the gender gap: on starting primary school

in 2013 teacher assessments of pupils at the end of 1 year showed girls ahead of boys by between 7-17% points in all 7 areas of learning at KS4 girls continued to do consistently better than boys especially in english


the gender gap: at GCSE

the gender gap stands at around at around 10% points


the gender gap: at AS and A level

girls are more likely to pass and get higher grades although the gap is much narrower than GCSE
even in so called 'boys' subjects girls are more likely to get A-C


the gender gap: on vocational courses

a larger proportion of girls achieve distinctions in every subject including those such as engineering/construction where girls are the minority


the gender gap: at higher eduction

before 1997 boys were more likely to stay on for higher education than girls
those trends have since been reversed
its important to note that more girls the boys are staying on in higher eduction than ever before


teacher attention: French (1993)

found that attention directed towards boys is generally negative - in relation to behaviour and reprimands


teacher attention: Francis

found boys are punished more harshly, felt picked on by teachers who had lower expectations of them


teacher attention: Swann (1998)

found differences in gendered communication styles
boys dominate whole class discussion and are more likely to interrupt and become hostile
girls prefer paired and group tasks and are better at listening and taking turns to express their views


Mitsos and Browne (1998)

girls are more successful in coursework because they
- are more organised
- spend more time on their work
- are better at meeting dedlines
- more likely to bring the correct equipment to class
- mature earlier than boys
- have better language skills (and thus do better in oral exams)


Elwood (2005)

coursework doesn't count for much, majority of subjects don't include coursework and its not weighted very highly


explanation for differences in subject choices

- early socialisation
- gendered subject image
- peer pressure
- gendered career opportunities


early socialisation

Oakley (1973) argues sex is our inborn physical difference whereas gender is the learned cultural differences between male and female
gender role socialisation s the process of learning the behaviour expected of males and females in society
early learnt behaviour expected of males and females shapes a childs identity

Norman (1988) notes how different dress, activities and characteristics are assigned to each sex


gendered subject images

some subjects are seen to be for boys and others for girls e.g. science and computer science are viewed as 'masculinised' subjects because:
- science teachers are more likely male
- boys often dominate laboratory settings and equipment
- computer studies involves working with machines
- computer studies involves formal independent tasks


peer pressure

Paetcher (1998) found that students apply pressure to each other to says within their gender domain
boys taking on subjects like dance of music ay bring negative responses
girls who appear to be interested in sports more than boys may be labelled as 'lesbian' or 'butch' by others as their image contradict with controversial female stereotypes


gendered career opportunities

over 1/2 of womens employment falls into 4 categories: clerical, sectorial, personal services and occupations such as cleaning
by contrast inly 1/6 of male workers are employed in these jobs
this 'sex-typing' occupations means that bus and girls have different ideas as to what jobs are 'acceptable' or even possible


Murphy (1991)

set primary and lower secondary pupils open-ended tasks where they were asked to design boats and vehicles and to write estate agents' adverts for a house

boys designed more battle ships and power boats/ sports cars with weaponry and little living accommodation while girls designed cruise ships/ family cars paying attention to detail and comfort


Leonard (2006)

highlights how many students make less traditional subject choice when analysing 13,000 individuals she found that girls in girls schools were more likely to take maths or science


double standards

a double standard exists the we apply one set of standards to one group bu a different set to another group
if a girl is to behave in an overly sexualised way, she's likely to be labelled a 'slag'
if a boy does the same thing he gains respect


verbal abuse

Connell argues that a 'rich vocabulary of abuse' exists which keeps male within their dominant positions
girls are called names for behaving/ dressing in certain ways
Lees suggests girls are 'slags' if their sexually available and 'drags' if not
Parker suggests a dominant male identity is also enforced through calling boys 'gay' of they deviate fro masculine behaviour


male gaze

refers to the visual aspect to the way on which female identity is controlled through male pupils and teachers looking girls up and down, seeing them as sexual objects and making judgements about their appearances


peer groups - male

Epistein and Willis show that boys in anti-school subcultures will label hard working boys as effeminate

Mac and Ghaill suggest that WC 'macho lads' are dismissive of other hard working boys, MC groups portray an image of 'effortless achoevement'


peer groups - female

Archer shows how WC girls gain symbolic capital from a hyper-heterosexual feminine identity
girls who fail to conform are 'tramps' and unpopular
Ringrose conducted a small scale study of 13-14 year olds WC girls and found bing popular was crucial to their identity their identity had conflicts between
- an idealised feminised identity (loyalty to female group)
- a sexualised identity (competing for boys)
the balance between not being 'slut shamed' and also not being 'frigid' was difficult for them to achieve


teachers and discipline

Mac and Ghaill found that male teachers told boys off for 'behaving like girls' and teased them when they did worse in tests compared to girls
teachers can reinforce gender stereotypes



boys have lower levels of literacy perhaps because parents spend less time reading to their sons
mothers usually read to their children making it seem like a feminine task boys steered towards computer games/ sports which doesn't develop their literacy skills while girls have more of a 'bedroom culture' staying indoors reading/ completing work


AO3 improving boys literacy

National Literacy Strategy focusing on improving boys literacy

Reading Champions scheme set male role models celebrating their own reading interests

Dads and Sons which encourages fathers to be more involved with their sons education



since the 80s theres been a decline in industries like mining and manufacturing

Mitsos and Browne claim this decline in male employment has led to an 'identity crisis' for men many boys now believe they have little prospects of getting a proper job, undermining their motivation and self esteem leading to them giving up