We have entered a century that can be defined by advanced technology, people expressing themselves in ways that one cannot imagine and doctors acting as God. A hundred years ago, it would take days before a telegram will reach its destination. But now all you need is a computer and an internet connection and you would not think that the person that you are talking to is 10,000 miles across the globe. Before, women cannot get a job and must stay at home to take care of the household; they were not even allowed to go to school. But now, the females are competing in the same league as the males.
More women are finishing high school and pursuing college, getting into their respective professions. A couple years back the newborn screening was not yet developed and hence, a lot of newborns were not able to be screened for such diseases. But now that this method is working in full force, you can actually detect your infant’s diseases earlier and have higher chances of prevention. There are also a number of machines that can actually make doctor’s works easier, decreasing the mortality rate, prolonging life. If a group wants to express their hatred and anger, they can have a strike, and the media will expose them and they will be heard.
That is why the media is one of the powerful agents in today’s modern world. Not only are the technologies more advanced, so are the minds of the people. Today you can do the unthinkable and even immoral way back in the medieval times. You can choose not to believe in God without getting sacrificed or stoned to death, you can change your gender, even the anatomical constructions can be changed, provided you have the money and the courage to go through with. But unlike those times, people now have changed. Our minds are broader, our acceptance more tolerating.
Which puts me in a position to think that maybe what Judith Butler, the author of Gender Trouble, wants to voice out is not really a big deal today as when compared to the time she published this book. In my opinion Butler is trying to figure out how we got to define what a man and a woman is, what their differences are, and what our culture and norms want them to be. How an individual determines the nature of their femininity or masculinity is a question that she wants to answer. And she concluded by saying that we do not really know what our gender is. What we have come to know is what we were told to become.
Our gender is defined by how we portray the roles of a female or a male. And how we further develop these performances, how stabilized we are with it that we do not change it anymore. But I do not think that you will get that answer anymore if you ask any person in the streets. Yes, we may have our own theories, our own definitions of what a man and a woman is, but all these are deeply rooted from the anatomical structures that we possess plus the environment that we grew up in. I do have high respects for Butler’s work, especially in her in-depth discussion of the theories of Simone de Beauvoir, Luce Irigaray and Sigmund Freud.
And the mere fact that she wrote a book about it tells of her wisdom on the subject matter. But to be honest, only one thing comes to my mind about people who try to determine these kinds of things: gender gap. Admit it or not, a person’s gender highly differentiates and molds one person from the other gender. Gender gap, according to Gertrude Abramson as mentioned in her article, “Has the gender gap closed? ” is a disproportionate difference or disparity between the sexes. Maybe that is why Judith Butler wants to know if a person is made to be male or female, to also solve gender equality problems.
Because I think if you get to agree that both gender came out equally and was made equally, then the differences will be treated as minor ones and will be eventually be ignored. How bad has the gender gap been to everybody? A target of scrutiny is the gender gap in economics wherein the males are the dominating ones. “Statistics show that in 1890 the percentage of married white women who reported an occupation outside the home was extremely low—just 2. 5 percent for the entire United States. The figure increased to 12. 5 percent by 1940, 20.
7 percent by 1950, and then by about 10 percentage points for every decade since then. By 1990 the labor participation rate for all married women had climbed to almost 60 percent, versus 78 percent for married men. ” (Gender Gap) But these statistics definitely turn the other way around when it comes to school. In college, according to the U. S. education department, women reign, earning an average 57% of all BAs and 58% of all master’s degrees in the U. S. alone. There are 133 girls getting BAs for every 100 guys — a number that’s projected to grow to 142 women per 100 men by 2010.
(The New Gender Gap) So the question is, why all this comparison? I do not think there should be any, as this is the reason why there is inequality in the first place. I think that there should be no more distinction between the capabilities of men and women, only in their biological differences. Because the reality is that whatever the success of the female is, they are also the success of the males. Everything, every law, every bill has been passed so that all sexes, whether it be gay or lesbian, male or female have been heard in court to give equal opportunities to everybody.
If you do not have the right to get a same sex marriage in this state, you go to the state that accepts that. And compared to a century ago that colleges do not accept females, nor some companies do not get female employees, now they are accepted. One cannot really tell of how this happened, it just did. What I am trying to say here is that maybe, if we do not pay as much attention to the gender differences, the world will be a better place. With all due respect to those theorists and their constant search and exploration for knowledge, but I stand by my own opinion.
ReferencesThe Library of Economics and Liberty. (2002). Gender Gap. Retrieved December 31, 2007, from http://econlib. org/library/Enc/GenderGap. html Business Week. (26 May 2003). The New Gender Gap. Retrieved December 31, 2007, from http://www. businessweek. com/magazine/content/03_21/b3834001_mz001. htm International Society for Technology in Education. (May 2006). Has the Gender Gap Closed? Retrieved December 31, 2007, from www. iste. org/Content/NavigationMenu/Publications/LL/LLIssues/Volume_33_2006_2005_/May_No_8_/33806a. pdf
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