How Society Shapes a Womans Life in Our Culture
Roll #:21-11326, Section: I
Forman Christian College
(A Chartered University)
The words that comes to a persons mind when you ask them of the adjectives they associate with the word women is someone who is fragile, gentle, na?ve, passive and innocent, someone who should be protected. We live in a society that has schooled us to see women as delicate and dependent individuals who cant survive on their own. Our society has constantly attempted to conform women into what it feels like a lady ought to be. Society plays a major role in dictating a womans life. It reigns over the way a woman should look, how she should act and treats women as inferior to men. Our society has a lot of expectations when it comes to women, a lady should always look perfect, a lady knows how to dress and how to behave, they are taught that women are destined to be housemakers and their role is to take care of their families and their homes. For centuries women have been treated as inferior and are constantly undermined. They are considered less important and in some parts of the world a burden to their parents.
The society has developed a concept that women can only be considered beautiful if they have long hair, white skin and if they are tall, skinny and many more unrealistically perfect expectations. Women arent taught to be comfortable in their own skin, instead they are told to try different remedies and creams to get that perfect flawless skin, to go on diet so they have that perfect hourglass body, they are taught that if they dont look good they nobody would like them. Women spend most of their life trying to fit in and hiding any signs of imperfection. In her book Facing Age, Laura Hurd Clarke interviewed different women of old age to understand how women feel about growing old and looking old, what women go through when they start to lose their youthfulness. The women she interviewed explained what they went through emotionally and how they felt that they felt like misfits once the signs of aging started. The women lost confidence in themselves and they felt like society plays a key role in these insecurities. The book also describes that women are so afraid of looking less than perfect that they are willing to go through surgeries, implantations and many other medical procedures just to avoid being a misfit in this society.
Jenifer Bedford found in her research journal:
Study compared body image dissatisfaction (BID) and weight control practices; evaluated associations among BID, societal influences and concern for appropriateness (CFA); and identified the most important correlate of BID among younger (1923) and older women (6574). Questionnaires obtained information on demographics, weight control practices, societal influences (SATAQ-3), CFA and BID using the Figure Rating Scale. Findings revealed no difference in the prevalence of BID. The number of weight control practices and SATAQ-3 and CFA scores were correlated to BID. Pressure from the media was the most significant correlate of BID (Bedford, & Johnson, 2006).
Research has reported an increased accentuation on leanness in media focusing on females. Be that as it may, it is indistinct whether this emphasis has brought about more strength in the apparent perfect female body shape. Researchers tried to assess whether the perfect female figure has joined expanded strength into the current perfect body type that as of now accentuates slenderness. In Study 1, 78 female students assessed pictures of U.S. beauty pageant winners in the course of recent years on measurements of slenderness, strength, and appeal. Results showed that strength and slimness appraisals of expo winners fundamentally expanded after some time. In Study 2, 64 female students assessed two unique adaptations of a similar picture of a model a Thin Muscular picture and a Thin Only picture in which the presence of strength was expelled through advanced altering. At the point when pictures were exhibited in sets, results demonstrated that members found the Thin Muscular picture more appealing than the Thin Only picture. These outcomes propose that the current saw perfect female figure incorporates both extraordinary slimness and strength and that ladies favor this strong thin figure to an exclusively thin figure. These discoveries have suggestions for clinical medicines identified with self-perception, urgent exercise, and media education.
In the 21st century one would imagine that everyone would at least have the right to dress as they please, but even today in this era women are subjected to intense criticism on the way she chooses to dress. Women are to dress in a more feminine way, to cover themselves in order to avoid unnecessary attention from opposite gender. According to a research whose purpose was to inspect attire as a marker of ladies’ sexuality. Ninety-five ladies above the age of 20 took part in detailed interviews. Many women reported concern with sexual messages others might perceive from their clothing, and judged other women’s clothing on the dimensions of authenticity, morality, and appropriateness. Self- and other- clothing judgments varied by the target’s age, marital status, and parental status, and for other-judgments, by social class and generation (Montemurro, & Gillen,2013). Results propose that ladies’ bodies are socially criticized and that sexual subjectivity is stifled through the belittling of ladies’ sexualized dress. Women are told to dress conservatively in order to avoid any unwanted attention.
Society has many ways to control women and one of the ways we encounter in every part of the world is normative restriction. Women are constantly controlled and restricted by these common words thats not ladylike or good girls dont behave like that. Women are told to behave like a lady and to conform their hopes and dreams to how our society expects a lady should be. Little girls are socialized to think that their place is within the four walls of their homes. Girls are taught not to argue and to accept what is decided for them by their elders because elders know whats best for them. Values concerning womanhood stressed the significance of administration to one’s family, keeping up family respect, and reverence to spouses and in-laws. These qualities interpret into normally acknowledged jobs and gauges of conduct for individuals of various ages and sexual orientations. For instance, young ladies are relied upon to bear a great part of the weight of family unit work. They are expected to be responsible for household chores. This fills two needs: helping family units run easily, and preparing the young lady so she has what it takes she will require as a spouse and mother.
Litton fox said in his article:
Although confinement continuous throughout goodly portion of adult female lifecycle,
there is evidence that elderly women in purdah societies are much less subject to the
strictures of confinement than are younger women. The freedoms of older women derive
from their definition as crones, that is, no longer sexually attractive to men. (Fox, 1977).
A survey demonstrates how we connect certain words and traits with either being manly or feminine, this makes set principles and thoughts in our brains that add to gender bias and stereotypes. These impact how individuals think, act and interact with others regularly. This prompts different actualities, a standout amongst the most eminent being the stereotype threat. The stereotype threat impacts individuals who are required to perform inadequately, it is simply the dread of demonstrating expectations right. People are influenced by how other individuals see us and the stereotype threat takes advantage of this weakness. College of Chicago researched the stereotype threat and they found that the stereotype threat takes hold of the working memory in a persons mind, it implies that when a person is given an errand that is related to the stereotypes that are connected with you, the stereotype threat takes up working memory space in your cerebrum leaving less accessible to really accomplish the job that is to be done. The outcome is it lowers the execution, in this manner demonstrating the stereotype threat genuine. These gender based stereotypes and jobs likewise prompts gender biased characteristics in businesses, one being nursing. A thought of what a lady ought to be is created ladies are required to be warm, kind and minding and clean.
Even in this era the birth of a female child is not as welcomed as the birth of a male child. Gender inequality is something that has been internalized by generations and is really hard to get rid of.
According to Lin Bian, Sarah-Jane Leslie and Andrei Cimpian research:
The distribution of women and men across academic disciplines seems to be affected by perceptions of intellectual brilliance. Bian et al. studied young children to assess when those differential perceptions emerge. At age 5, children seemed not to differentiate between boys and girls in expectations of really, really smartchildhood’s version of adult brilliance. But by age 6, girls were prepared to lump more boys into the really, really smart category and to steer themselves away from games intended for the really, really smart. (Bian, Leslie, and Cimpian, 2017).
The shame connected to the birth of female child in our culture is obvious. Regardless of which class you have a place with, each family needs their next child to be a boy. Men marry multiple wives just to get a son. Many demographers and population planners have considered son preference in Asian countries to be a major barrier to reducing fertility. Some of these countries, such as South Korea and China, however, have recently achieved replacement-level fertility, in spite of their strong adherence to son preference. By use of sex-selective abortion and other means, the sex ratio at birth in these countries has been changed at three levels: in the population at large, between families, and within families. At the population level a rising sex ratio has been recorded; at the between-family level an inverse relationship between sex ratio and family size has been observed; and at the within-family level a rapidly rising sex ratio with birth order has been noted. Couples are advised to keep trying to have a boy, which results in larger families. Having a boy is considered as a blessing because boys stay with their parents and are the supporting hand to their parents. Girls on the other hand are to be married and the constant stress related to their protection and societal pressures causes parents to be dispassionate about girls.
Regardless of how you look at it, the gender pay gap is genuine, industrious, and destructive to women’s financial security. The gender pay gap is the aftereffect of numerous elements, including work related isolation, predisposition against working moms, and direct pay separation. Also, such things as racial predisposition, inability, access to training, and age become an integral factor. According to the global gender gap report, female talent is increasingly under used or untapped. Mens wages are growing faster and further. At the current rate of change, it could be another two hundred and seventeen years of change before equal pay is a reality. A gender pay gap has demonstrated to be both relentless and general. According to a paper that depends predominantly on U.S. information, however a gap among ladies’ and men’s income exists in each nation. There is a proceeding with discussion with regards to the degree to which the gap reflects just the unavoidable and sensibly reasonable aftereffect of contrasting work examples and practices by women and men or the effect of business victimization on women. The human capital methodology, in which different illustrative factors are utilized to recoil the apparent size of the gap, is regularly used to contend that a great part of the gap is expected, not to segregation, but rather to varying interests in work by ladies and men. Be that as it may, not one or the other speculations nor results can be evaluated in sexually unbiased ways and the model’s basic idea of judicious decisions made against the setting of an unbiased playing field is defective. Segregation gives off an impression of being laced with gendered work examples and practices; a considerable lot of the human capital “logical” factors themselves require clarification.
Society assumes a noteworthy job in managing a women’s life. It rules over the manner in which a lady should look, how she should act and treats ladies as secondary or less capable compared to men. Societal pressure of being perfect has lead women to lose confidence in themselves. Society has many ways to confine women, using social norms of what is appropriate for girls and demeaning them into losing confidence in themselves, to not take stand for their rights and to accept that they truly belong in the four walls of their homes. Gender inequality is one of the harsh realities of this world and even after decades of trying it still persist in our minds and in our society. It is important to talk about these issues because we as a society has failed to fully accept women as important and crucial component of this society who deserve to have their rights. Government should not only pass laws to give women their rights but take certain measures to ensure that they are implemented as well. We need to ask ourselves why even in this era little girls wish not to be girls but to be a boy? What is it that we as a society are doing that makes women feel like they are not safe?
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Bedford, J. L., & Johnson, C. S. (2006). Societal influences on body image dissatisfaction in younger and older women. Journal of Women & Aging, 18(1), 41-55.
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Montemurro, B., & Gillen, M. M. (2013). How clothes make the woman immoral: Impressions given off by sexualized clothing. Clothing and textiles research journal, 31(3), 167-181.