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Sociology of Gender


Gender is the wide set of characteristics that are seen to distinguish between male and female. It can extend from sex to social role or gender identity. As a word, "gender" has more than one valid definition. In ordinary speech, it is used interchangeably with "sex" to denote the condition of being male or female. In the social sciences, however, it refers specifically to socially constructed and institutionalized differences such as gender roles. The World Health Organization (WHO), for example, uses "gender" to refer to "the socially constructed roles, behaviors, activities, and attributes that a given society considers appropriate for men and women". Some cultures have distinct gender-related social roles that can be considered distinct from male and female, such as the hijra of India andPakistan.

Definition of Gender
Traditionally, gender has been used primarily to refer to the grammatical categories of "masculine," "feminine," and "neuter," but in recent years the word has become well established in its use to refer to sex-based categories, as in phrases such as gender gap and the politics of gender. This usage is supported by the practice of many anthropologists, who reserve sex for reference to biological categories, while using gender to refer to social or cultural categories. According to this rule, one would say The effectiveness of the medication appears to depend on the sex (not gender) of the patient, but In peasant societies, gender (not sex) roles are likely to be more clearly defined. This distinction is useful in principle, but it is by no means widely observed, and considerable variation in usage occurs at all levels.

Differences Between Man and Woman

Couples although they have been married for so many years still have differences. Of course people have differences. But couples assume that because they have been together for such a long time they will always agree on the same thing. Disagreements can happen anytime. The more couples are bonded together the more they discover new things about each other. Many differences are being discovered as compared to the first time that they met. If they just let these differences as it is and they didn't work out on it, these differences can lead into a more serious matter which is very unhealthy for the relationship.

Different man or women

It is not unusual for men and women to have different perceptions of their needs and strengths. They may also have different ideas about who does what, who uses what resources, and who controls resources or makes decisions in other important areas of life. Women and men may also have different views about gender relations, how they have changed already, and how they should change in future. Insights into womens/girls and mens/boys needs and strengths may be gained from finding out about the gender division of labour, use of and control over resources, and patterns of decision making. Consultation with participants, in a way which allows both womens and mens voices to be heard, is essential.

Gender roles are the social definition of women and men. They vary among different societies and cultures, classes, ages and during different periods in history. Gender-specific roles and responsibilities are often conditioned by household structure, access to resources, specific impacts of the global economy, and other locally relevant factors such as ecological conditions. Gender relations are the ways in which a culture or society defines rights, responsibilities, and the identities of men and women in relation to one another.

Types of works
Indian women work more than men of India but their work is hardly recognized as they mainly do unskilled work. Their household chores is never counted as a work, if a woman is working in a field to help her husband it will also be not counted as a work. A study conducted by Mies in 1986 states that in Andhra Pradesh a woman works around 15 hours a day during the agricultural season whereas a male on an average works for around 7-8 hours.


The 4 Most Female work or job. (highest percentage of workers that are female) Preschool and kindergarten teachers Secretaries and administrative assistants Dental assistants Hairdressers, hair stylists and cosmetologists The 4 Most Male work or job. (highest percentage of workers that are male) Logging workers Automotive body and related repairers Bus and truck mechanics and diesel engine specialists Electrical power-line installers and repairers But how do we really feel about gender crossovers in the workplace? How comfortable would you be to see men in the maternity ward and day care centers or women in trucking, construction and heavy machinery operations?

Effects urban and rural area

Cardiovascular risk factors were studied in a random sample from the urban and rural population of the Cap-Bon, including 692 men and women, aged 35-50 years. In this sample, including 56 % urban dwellers, the mean total cholesterol was higher in urban areas than in rural areas. In urban areas 10 % of the subjects had values above 6 %compared with 6 % in rural areas. Obesity was much more frequent among women (35 % versus 26 %) but less frequent among men (16 % versus 5 %) in urban and rural areas. Diabetes was found in 8 % of men and 10 % of women in urban areas, and only 0.8 % and 3 % in rural areas. Hypertension was found in 13 % of women and 11 % of men in urban areas, 13 % and 4 % in rural areas (13 %). Cigarette smoking was found in 60 % of men in urban areas and 75.8 % in rural areas.

Gender analysis is most useful when it is applied routinely to all aspects of program and project planning, implementation and review (rather than as an after-thought or add-on); when it is undertaken in a participatory manner; and when it is applied to program and project objectives, so that they are modified in response to the needs and interests of both women and men. One major challenge for the future is to ensure that gender analysis is integrated into a broader social analysis of programs and projects, along with sustainability and poverty analysis.