The Social Construction of Gender
You will conduct your research project on your own Thanksgiving holiday this year. To prepare for this project, read Women and the Making of Holidays on the website Sociological Images. Next, watch the video called Social Constructionism. Last, read Night to His Day: The Social Construction of Gender, by sociologist Judith Lorber.
During the Thanksgiving celebration you have with your family this year, pay special attention to the gender roles associated with this holiday, in your family. Notice the following, and take notes:
What do the men do during different parts of the day and evening?
How do the women spend their time?
What about the children? Do the boys and girls help their family members? In what ways?
Take a look at the various rituals throughout the day, and think about whether they differ by gender. For instance, is the turkey carved at the dinner table, and who carves it?
- Write a two paragraph summary of your observations, answering the questions above, and discussing whether or not you recognized any inequities in the gender roles you observed.
- Write one paragraph or more connecting your observations to the concept of social constructionism, particularly the social construction of gender roles.
Your report should be a minimum of 450 words.
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