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Objective

At the end of this lesson, you should be able to discuss gender roles in Philippine society from pre-
colonial to the present era.

How do gender roles vary across cultures according to a particular culture’s beliefs and expectations
concerning men and women’s roles?

Find out the answer in this lesson!

Gender and Gender Roles


People play different roles in society depending on age and occupation. There are jobs that require a
specific gender to perform tasks while other jobs are open to both men and women.

Gender
 Gender refers to social, cultural, and psychological characteristics or traits related to males
and females based on certain social contexts.
 It is different from sex, which refers to the biological characteristics that distinguish a male
from a female.
 Thus, sex makes a person male or female, while gender makes a person masculine or
feminine.

Gender Roles

 Gender roles refer to attitudes and behaviors that the society expects a person to exhibit
based on his or her sex.
 For example, in traditional Philippine society, women are expected to be plain housewives
and take care of their children, while men are expected to be professionals and provide the
needs of their family.
 Another example is that society expects women to be more emotional and sensitive while
men are expected to be strong and capable of doing things that women cannot do.

Gender Roles in Pre-colonial Philippine Society


In pre-colonial Philippines, males and females enjoyed the same rights and privileges. Different
social functions were assigned to different members of society. There were functions that were
specifically given to males, females, or both.
Aside from being a priestess, the babaylan was also considered a healer, an adviser, and a seer.

Gender Roles in Philippine Society During the Colonial Period


Gender roles during the colonial period changed drastically. Women were restrained from other
activities outside their homes, while men were given more social functions. These roles also
changed as the Philippines was occupied by new colonizers.

 With the coming of the Spaniards and the introduction of Catholicism, the babaylan lost their
role in the religious life of the community. This role was taken over by Catholic priests.
Women were relegated to doing household chores and taking care of children. More often
than not, young women were not sent to school but instead trained to be good wives and
mothers for their future families. Some women were also forced to marry for economic and
political gain.
 During the American period, women had more freedom in society. They were allowed to
study and work in any field they wanted. They also adopted American values. Men and
women became equal in the sense that it became acceptable for both genders to have jobs
and be educated.
 Although men and women were able to maintain their status in society during
the Japanese period, women were usually kept inside their houses to protect them from
abusive Japanese soldiers. Men also became busy defending the country, with most of them
serving as soldiers.
Gender Roles in Current Philippine Society
At present, Philippine society is more open to allowing both men and women to perform different
tasks not based solely on gender, but on an individual’s capabilities and strengths. For example,
fields like engineering, architecture, and medicine, which are often associated with men, have long
been open to women. Likewise, there are also lots of male teachers, nurses,chefs, and hairdressers
nowadays.

What refers to social, cultural, and psychological characteristics or traits related to males and females based on certai
n social contexts?

Correct answer
gender
gender roles
sex
sex roles

Explanation

Gender is typically used in reference to social and cultural differences rather than biological ones.

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Q2

Single Answer

What is the set of behaviors that the society expects from a person based on his or her sex?

Correct answer
gender roles
sex roles
biological norms
behaviorism

Explanation

Gender roles are dictated by society, which gives a set of attitudes and behaviors that is appropriate for a person of a
specific sex.

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Q3

Single Answer

Who performed spiritual and social rituals during the pre-colonial period?

Correct answer
babaylan
bagani
maharlika
timawa

Explanation

The babaylan served as the spiritual leader and healer in pre-colonial society by performing spiritual and social rituals
for the community.

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Q4

Single Answer

The babaylan lost her position in society upon the arrival of the Spaniards. Which among the following functions of th
e babaylan was taken over by Catholic priests?

Correct answer
religious leader
mediator for the gods
healer
seer and adviser

Explanation

When the Spaniards arrived, Catholic priests baptized pre-colonial Filipinos into Catholicism, stripping the babaylan
s of their religious functions.

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Q5

Single Answer

What concept expects women to be sensitive and emotional?

Correct answer
gender roles
gender
sexism
sexual preference

Explanation

Gender roles assign a person's position depending on what is accepted by society.

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Q6

Single Answer

What concept says that women are capable of bearing children?

Correct answer
sex
gender
masculinity
gender roles

Explanation

A person’s biological makeup determines what he or she cannot do with his or her body. In this case, a woman is biol
ogically equipped with the ability of bearing children.

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Q7

Single Answer

Which statement is true?

Correct answer
Women enjoyed equal rights and status as men in the pre-colonial period.
Women enjoyed equal rights and status as men in the colonial period.
Women were relegated to doing household chores in the pre-colonial period.
Women were not allowed to study and hold important positions in society during the pre-colonial
period.

Explanation

Our female ancestors were treated in the same way as our male ancestors, with some of them holding influential posi
tions in society.

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Q8

Single Answer
Andrea wants to be an engineer when she grows up. When she was younger, she used to play with her brother’s toy
robots and cars. Her mother, however, told her that she can only play with dolls because she is a girl.

Which among the following concepts apply in this situation?

Correct answer
gender role
sex role
sex discrimination
social roles

Explanation

Andrea, as a girl, is expected by society to like the things that other girls like.

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Q9

Single Answer

Patrick is being bullied in school for being more feminine than other boys his age. His classmates tell him that boys s
hould not act like girls because it is what is expected by society.

What is shown in this situation?

Correct answer
Society dictates how one should act based on their sexual preference.
Gender roles are followed by everyone in society.
Gender roles do not dictate who a person is.
Society dictates how a person should act based on being male or female.

Explanation

In this scenario, Patrick’s classmates, who grew up in a society where boys should be boys, are trying to dictate what
he should and should not do.

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Q10

Multiple Choice

Why is gender discrimination a problem in society?

Correct answer
because members of other genders believe they are superior to others
because members of other genders are not given the same opportunities as others
because men should always be the leaders of society
because women should always be the leaders of society