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This essay asks how do male stereotypes affect the manner in which males engage with gender equality?
This will involve analysing the entrenchment of traditional male stereotypes in society and their consequent impact on women.
Firstly, the essay will establish that male stereotypes operate within a larger structure of the gender paradigm.
This content was written by a student and assessed as part of a university degree.
E-IR publishes student essays & dissertations to allow our readers to broaden their understanding of what is possible when answering similar questions in their own studies.
By definition, psychoanalytic theory aims to deconstruct what is explicitly or unintentionally communicated to illuminate the latent ‘… Fonseca et al., ‘Program H and Program M: Engaging young men and empowering young women to promote gender equality and health’ (2010), available online: 21 October 2013).
fantasies, anxieties, and desires of the speaking subject’. In relation to gender, psychoanalysis stresses that our biology is experienced within culture, not nature, and ‘… genitalia at birth or chromosomal typing before birth’. The terms gender and sex are often understood to be the same thing and used interchangeably. However, this only serves to conflate biological anatomy with socially constructed identities.The problem with this misconception is that in societies, such as those in the West, it is assumed that the reproductive function of males and females is a sufficient basis for prescribing psychological and behavioural characteristics onto members of society. In response to this, Peterson and Runyan assert that: ‘… it is perfectly feasible for gender to change while biological sex remains the same’. Gender should be considered an adjustable and fluid concept, as opposed to the more static disposition of biology.These stereotypes, presented as inherent, are influenced by the social environment to which one is subjected.Male and female gender profiles are normalised to the extent that they appear natural, biological.Certain masculinities preserve and promote the inequalities experienced between men and women, and, in order to achieve gender equality, they must be dismantled.When analysing male stereotypes, in the context of gender equality, it is important to recognise that they do not operate in isolation. Gender denotes the social phenomenon of distinguishing males and females based on a set of identity traits.Then, it will define gender equality and its various interpretations.This will then lead the essay to discuss the trajectory of the progress towards gender equality and why males must be viewed as fundamental actors.gender should be understood as a social, not physiological, construction: Femininity and masculinity, the terms that denote one’s gender, refer to a complex set of characteristics and behaviours prescribed for a particular sex by society and learned through the socialisation process’. In other words, society, not biology, confines males and females to particular masculine and feminine character profiles. According to Freud, the human subject has always been , and that despite the biological differences, males and females have become particular social subjects. The biological individual can be viewed as a blank canvas upon which gendered identities are projected and performed through socialisation.Therefore, the supposed differences between men and women are accentuated through the legitimisation of social stereotypes.