Gender Sensitization: Society and Culture
BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment July 2022 & Jan 2023
Q 1. Describe the terms masculinity and femininity in India? Do you think it shapes gender roles? Explain.
Ans. Masculinity and femininity are terms that are commonly used to describe the traditional gender roles and expectations associated with being male or female.
These concepts are deeply embedded in Indian society and have played a significant role in shaping gender roles in the country.
In India, masculinity is typically associated with traits such as strength, aggression, and dominance.
Men are expected to be the primary breadwinners and providers for their families, and are often judged by their ability to perform in traditionally masculine roles such as those related to physical strength, leadership, and assertiveness. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Femininity, on the other hand, is associated with traits such as nurturing, gentleness, and emotional sensitivity.
Women are often expected to take on traditional roles such as those related to caregiving, domestic work, and raising children. Additionally, women are often judged by their appearance and are expected to conform to traditional beauty standards.
These gender roles are deeply ingrained in Indian culture and are reinforced through various social institutions such as the family, religion, and media. For example, traditional Hindu beliefs view men as the heads of their households and women as subordinate to men.
The Indian media often portrays men as strong and powerful and women as submissive and dependent. These messages contribute to the reinforcement of traditional gender roles in Indian society.
The impact of these gender roles is significant. Men who are unable to fulfill the traditional masculine roles may face social stigma and may be viewed as weak or ineffective.
Women who do not conform to traditional gender roles may face discrimination and may be viewed as unfeminine or inappropriate. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Gender roles in India also have a significant impact on the social, economic, and political status of men and women.
Men who fulfill the traditional masculine roles may have greater access to resources and opportunities, while women who do not conform to traditional gender roles may be denied access to education and employment opportunities.
Moreover, gender roles in India have a significant impact on the health and well-being of men and women.
Men who are pressured to conform to traditional masculine roles may engage in risky behaviors such as excessive drinking, drug use, and violence, which can lead to negative health outcomes.
Women who are pressured to conform to traditional gender roles may experience mental health issues such as anxiety and depression, which can lead to negative physical health outcomes.
Q 2. Describe the relationship of labour force participation, economy and gender question as a key focus. Support your argument by providing suitable examples.
Ans. Labour force participation, economy and gender are closely interconnected, with each having a significant impact on the other. I will examine the relationship between these three factors and argue that gender inequality in the labour force has a negative impact on the economy.
Labour force participation is defined as the proportion of the working-age population that is employed or seeking employment. In many countries, including India, women have historically had lower rates of labour force participation than men. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
This gender gap in labour force participation has been attributed to a range of factors, including social norms, gender stereotypes, and discrimination.
The economy is a complex system that is influenced by a variety of factors, including labour force participation.
The more people that are employed, the greater the economic output of a country, leading to increased economic growth and development.
The gender composition of the labour force can also have an impact on economic growth, as research has shown that gender diversity in the workforce can lead to greater innovation and productivity.
However, gender inequality in the labour force can have a negative impact on the economy. When women are excluded from the labour force or are unable to fully participate, it limits their potential to contribute to the economy and reduces overall productivity.
This is because women often have different skills, perspectives, and experiences than men, which can lead to new and innovative approaches to problem-solving. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
One example of the negative impact of gender inequality in the labour force can be seen in the Indian economy. Despite significant progress in recent years, women in India still face significant barriers to labour force participation.
According to the World Bank, only 20.4% of women in India participate in the labour force, compared to 76.5% of men.
This gender gap in labour force participation is one of the highest in the world and is a major factor contributing to the gender pay gap and other forms of gender-based economic inequality in India.
The low rate of female labour force participation in India can be attributed to a range of factors, including cultural norms and gender stereotypes that limit women’s opportunities for education and employment, as well as discrimination in the workplace. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
For example, women may face sexual harassment, wage discrimination, and limited opportunities for promotion and career advancement.
The negative impact of gender inequality in the labour force can also be seen in the United States.
Despite having higher rates of female labour force participation than many other countries, women in the US still face significant barriers to employment and career advancement.
For example, women are often concentrated in low-paying occupations and are underrepresented in high-paying fields such as technology and finance.
This gender inequality in the US labour force has a negative impact on the economy, as it limits the potential contributions of women and reduces overall productivity.
Research has shown that closing the gender pay gap and increasing the representation of women in high-paying fields could add trillions of dollars to the US economy.
Another example of the relationship between labour force participation, economy, and gender can be seen in the Nordic countries. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Denmark are often cited as examples of countries with high rates of gender equality and labour force participation.
These countries have implemented a range of policies to support women’s labour force participation, including parental leave policies, flexible work arrangements, and affordable childcare.
Q 3. Critically evaluate the role of the family from gender lens
Ans. The family is a fundamental social institution that serves various functions in society, including socialization, care, and reproduction.
However, the role of the family from a gender lens has been a subject of debate, as the family structure, dynamics, and functions are heavily influenced by gender norms and expectations.
This essay will critically evaluate the role of the family from a gender lens by analyzing the gendered division of labor, power relations, and the impact of these dynamics on individual and societal outcomes.
The gendered division of labor is a central aspect of the family from a gender lens. Historically, women have been relegated to domestic and care work, while men have been expected to be breadwinners and providers.
This gendered division of labor is reinforced by societal norms and expectations that prescribe different roles and responsibilities for men and women based on their gender.
For instance, women are expected to prioritize caregiving and family work over paid employment, while men are expected to prioritize their career and earning capacity.
This division of labor has profound implications for the economic, social, and political status of men and women in the family and society. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
One of the consequences of the gendered division of labor is that women often have less access to economic resources and opportunities than men.
Women are more likely to work in low-paying and precarious jobs, which often offer little flexibility to balance work and family responsibilities.
Moreover, women are more likely to take breaks from paid work or reduce their working hours to care for children and other family members, which can have long-term effects on their career advancement and earning potential.
This economic inequality has implications for women’s autonomy, decision-making power, and overall well-being.
Another consequence of the gendered division of labor is the unequal distribution of care work within the family. Women are expected to provide most of the care work, including child-rearing, eldercare, and household chores.
This care work is often undervalued and invisible, despite being critical for the well-being of individuals and society.
The unequal distribution of care work can lead to a “care penalty” for women, as they face higher levels of stress, fatigue, and time constraints, which can affect their mental and physical health.
The gendered division of labor also affects power relations within the family. Men’s dominance in economic and political spheres often translates into greater decision-making power within the family.
Men are often perceived as the “head of the household” and have the final say in family matters, including financial decisions, education, and healthcare. Women’s subordinate position in the family can lead to a lack of agency, voice, and control over their lives. This lack of power can manifest in various forms of violence, including domestic violence, sexual violence, and forced marriage.
Moreover, the gendered division of labor and power relations in the family have wider implications for gender equality and social justice. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
The family is not just a private institution but also a site of reproduction and maintenance of gendered norms and values.
The family can perpetuate patriarchal and heteronormative structures and reinforce gender stereotypes and expectations.
For instance, the family can reproduce gendered attitudes towards domestic and care work, which can limit women’s opportunities and perpetuate the notion that women are naturally suited for such work.
Similarly, the family can reinforce gendered expectations around masculinity and femininity, which can stigmatize non-conforming gender identities and expressions.
Despite these challenges, the family can also be a site of resistance and transformation. Families can challenge gendered norms and expectations by promoting gender equality, respect, and diversity.
Families can provide supportive environments for gender-nonconforming individuals and create spaces for dialogue and learning around gender and sexuality.
Moreover, families can contribute to social change by advocating for policy and legal reforms that promote gender equality and women’s rights.
Q 4. What is Sexual Harassment at Workplace. Examine its forms.
Ans. Sexual harassment is a pervasive form of workplace discrimination that is based on sex or gender. It is defined as any unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment.
Sexual harassment can have serious consequences for the victim’s mental health, career, and overall well-being.
This essay will examine the various forms of sexual harassment in the workplace and the impact they can have on individuals and organizations.
The most common form of sexual harassment is quid pro quo harassment, which occurs when a person in a position of authority demands sexual favors in exchange for job benefits or opportunities, such as promotions, pay raises, or career advancement.
This form of harassment is often characterized by explicit or implicit threats of retaliation if the victim does not comply with the demands.
Quid pro quo harassment is particularly insidious because it exploits power differentials between individuals and creates a hostile and intimidating work environment. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Another form of sexual harassment is hostile work environment harassment, which occurs when the conduct of a co-worker or supervisor creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment.
This conduct can include sexually suggestive comments, jokes, or gestures; unwelcome physical contact; or the display of sexually explicit materials in the workplace.
Hostile work environment harassment can have a cumulative effect on the victim’s mental health and can lead to feelings of isolation, anxiety, and depression.
A third form of sexual harassment is retaliation harassment, which occurs when an employer takes adverse action against an employee who has reported sexual harassment or filed a complaint.
Retaliation harassment can take many forms, such as denial of promotions or raises, transfer to less desirable positions, or even termination of employment.
Retaliation harassment is a serious concern because it can deter victims from reporting sexual harassment and can perpetuate a culture of silence and impunity in the workplace.
A fourth form of sexual harassment is online or cyber harassment, which occurs when the harassment takes place through digital platforms, such as email, social media, or messaging apps. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Online sexual harassment can take many forms, such as the sending of sexually explicit messages, images, or videos; the creation of fake profiles to harass or stalk individuals; or the spreading of rumors or gossip about a person’s sexual behavior or orientation.
Online sexual harassment can be particularly harmful because it can follow the victim outside of the workplace and can have long-lasting effects on their reputation and mental health.
The impact of sexual harassment on individuals and organizations can be profound. Sexual harassment can have serious consequences for the victim’s mental health, including anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
It can also affect their job performance, career advancement, and overall well-being. Sexual harassment can also have negative consequences for the organization, including loss of productivity, decreased morale, and increased legal liability.
Moreover, sexual harassment can perpetuate a culture of discrimination and bias, which can affect the organization’s reputation and ability to attract and retain talented employees. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Q 5. Write in your own words the ‘construction of a girl child’ with suitable examples.
Ans. The construction of a girl child refers to the social and cultural processes by which society assigns meanings and expectations to girls based on their gender.
These constructions are not innate or biologically determined but are rather shaped by cultural and social practices that vary across time and place.
From the moment a girl is born, she is socialized into a world that has already constructed her as a girl. Her parents, caregivers, and other members of society will treat her differently than they would if she were a boy.
They may dress her in pink and buy her dolls, while a boy would be dressed in blue and given toy cars or action figures.
These early gendered practices create expectations about how girls and boys should behave and what interests they should have.
As the girl grows older, she will continue to be influenced by these gendered expectations. She may be taught that her appearance is important, that she should be gentle and nurturing, and that she should be modest and submissive.
These messages are reinforced through media, advertising, and popular culture, which often depict girls in limited and stereotypical roles, such as the princess who needs to be rescued or the passive love interest. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
One example of how girls are constructed is through the socialization around their appearance. Girls are often taught that their physical appearance is one of their most important assets, and they are judged harshly if they do not conform to narrow beauty standards.
This can have serious consequences for girls’ self-esteem and mental health. Studies have shown that girls as young as six years old are already dissatisfied with their bodies and feel pressure to conform to idealized images of femininity.
Another example of how girls are constructed is through the messages they receive about their abilities and interests.
Girls are often encouraged to pursue traditionally feminine activities, such as dance, gymnastics, and cheerleading, while boys are encouraged to pursue sports, science, and technology.
This can limit girls’ opportunities to develop skills and interests outside of narrow gendered expectations. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Girls are also constructed through the way they are treated in school and other educational settings.
Teachers and peers may unconsciously treat girls differently than boys, expecting them to be quieter, more compliant, and less assertive. This can lead to girls being overlooked for leadership positions and other opportunities.
Furthermore, girls are constructed through their relationships with others. They are often taught that they should be nurturing and supportive of others, putting others’ needs before their own.
While these qualities are important, they can also reinforce gendered power imbalances and limit girls’ ability to assert their own needs and desires.
In many parts of the world, girls are also constructed through harmful practices such as child marriage, female genital mutilation, and son preference. These practices limit girls’ autonomy and perpetuate gender inequalities.
However, it is important to note that girls are not passive recipients of these constructions. They have agency and the ability to resist and challenge gendered expectations.
Girls around the world are fighting for their rights and pushing back against gendered norms and stereotypes. For example, the #MeToo movement has highlighted the prevalence of sexual harassment and assault and given voice to survivors. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Q 6. Write a note on patriarchy
Ans. Patriarchy is a social system in which men hold primary power and dominate in roles of political leadership, moral authority, social privilege, and control of property.
It is a system of male supremacy in which men have greater power and authority than women in almost every aspect of life.
Patriarchy is pervasive and exists in almost every society, although the ways in which it manifests may differ depending on cultural context.
Patriarchy is reinforced through cultural and social practices that prioritize men’s interests and needs over those of women.
This can be seen in the gendered division of labor, where men are often expected to work outside the home and earn a living, while women are expected to take care of the home and children.
Men are often viewed as more competent and capable than women, and women’s contributions to society and the economy are often undervalued or ignored. This reinforces men’s dominance in positions of power and control.
Patriarchy also reinforces harmful gender norms and stereotypes that limit both men and women.
For example, men are often expected to be strong, aggressive, and unemotional, while women are expected to be nurturing, emotional, and submissive.
These gendered expectations can limit both men and women’s ability to express themselves fully and live fulfilling lives.
Patriarchy is also a root cause of gender-based violence, including sexual assault, domestic violence, and harassment. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Men’s greater power and authority in society can lead to a sense of entitlement over women’s bodies, and men may use violence to exert control over women.
This violence is often normalized and excused, further perpetuating patriarchal power dynamics.
It is important to note that while patriarchy primarily benefits men, it also harms them in many ways. Patriarchy reinforces harmful gender norms that can limit men’s ability to express themselves fully and live fulfilling lives.
Men may also experience pressure to conform to traditional gender roles, such as being the sole breadwinner for their family, which can lead to stress and burnout.
Fighting patriarchy requires systemic change that addresses power imbalances and harmful gender norms.
This includes increasing women’s representation in positions of power and leadership, challenging harmful stereotypes and gendered expectations, and working to prevent gender-based violence. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
It also requires engaging men and boys in these efforts and creating spaces for them to reflect on and challenge their own privilege and complicity in patriarchy.
Q 7. What is radical feminism
Ans. Radical feminism is a feminist theory and practice that seeks to address the root causes of gender inequality and oppression.
It emerged in the 1960s and 1970s as a response to mainstream liberal feminism, which was seen as being too focused on achieving legal and political equality for women within existing power structures.
Radical feminism views patriarchy (the social system in which men hold primary power and dominate in roles of political leadership, moral authority, social privilege, and control of property) as the fundamental source of women’s oppression.
Radical feminists argue that gender inequality is not just a result of individual prejudices or discriminatory laws, but rather is deeply embedded in the social and cultural fabric of society.
Radical feminists advocate for a complete restructuring of society to eliminate patriarchal power structures.
This can include rejecting traditional gender roles and expectations, promoting women’s autonomy and empowerment, and creating alternative institutions and communities that prioritize women’s experiences and perspectives.
Radical feminism also places a strong emphasis on women’s collective action and consciousness-raising. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Many radical feminists believe that women’s experiences of oppression are shared and that women can only achieve liberation by working together to challenge and dismantle patriarchal systems.
Critics of radical feminism argue that it can be exclusionary and essentialist, as some radical feminists prioritize biological sex over other aspects of identity and may exclude transgender and non-binary people from their movement.
Others argue that radical feminism’s focus on women’s collective action can lead to an erasure of individual experiences and identities.
Q 8. What are reproductive rights of Indian women?
Ans. Reproductive rights refer to the rights of individuals to make decisions about their own reproductive and sexual health, including the right to access information, contraception, abortion, and healthcare services.
In India, reproductive rights have been the subject of much debate and activism, particularly in relation to women’s access to safe and legal abortion.
In India, women have the right to access information and services related to reproductive health, including contraception, family planning, and safe abortion.
The Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act of 1971 allows women to terminate a pregnancy up to 20 weeks for certain medical and social reasons, such as rape, incest, fetal abnormalities, and endangerment to the woman’s physical or mental health. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
However, the MTP Act also includes several restrictions and requirements, including the need for a doctor’s consent and the requirement that the procedure be performed in a hospital or clinic with specialized facilities.
Despite the legal framework that allows for safe and legal abortion, access to abortion services remains limited and unevenly distributed in India.
Many women face stigma and discrimination when seeking abortion services, and may not be able to access safe and legal procedures due to factors such as poverty, lack of transportation, and inadequate healthcare infrastructure.
In addition to access to safe and legal abortion, reproductive rights in India also include access to contraception and family planning services.
The government provides free or subsidized contraceptives through various programs, but many women still face barriers to accessing these services, such as lack of awareness or opposition from family members or religious leaders.
Other reproductive rights issues in India include maternal health and mortality, gender-based violence, and child marriage.
Maternal mortality rates in India remain high, particularly in rural areas, and are often linked to inadequate access to healthcare and poor maternal health outcomes.
Gender-based violence, including sexual assault and domestic violence, also remains a major issue in India, affecting women’s reproductive health and autonomy.
Child marriage, which can lead to early and unsafe pregnancies, is also a concern, particularly in rural areas.
In recent years, there has been increased activism and advocacy around reproductive rights in India, with women’s groups and activists calling for greater access to safe and legal abortion, contraception, and maternal healthcare services.
However, much work remains to be done to ensure that women in India can fully exercise their reproductive rights and make decisions about their own bodies and lives.
Q 9. Define productive and reproductive work.
Ans. Productive work refers to any activity or labor that produces goods or services for economic gain or benefit.
This can include paid work, such as employment in a formal job or self-employment, as well as unpaid work, such as caring for family members, volunteering, or household chores. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Reproductive work, on the other hand, refers to the unpaid labor that is necessary for the reproduction and maintenance of daily life and social relationships.
This can include activities such as caring for children, cooking, cleaning, and other household chores, as well as emotional and psychological labor, such as providing emotional support and care for family members.
Reproductive work is often performed disproportionately by women and girls, and is frequently undervalued and invisible in economic and social systems.
This can lead to a devaluation of women’s labor and contribute to gender inequalities, as women may have less time and opportunity to engage in paid work or pursue other interests and activities outside of the home.
Productive and reproductive work are often interrelated, as women may engage in both types of labor in order to support themselves and their families.
However, the distinction between the two is important in understanding the gendered division of labor and the ways in which economic and social systems can devalue women’s contributions to society. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Q 10. What is mass media?
Ans. Mass media refers to various forms of communication technologies that are designed to reach a large audience, such as television, radio, newspapers, magazines, and the internet.
The term “mass” refers to the large-scale distribution and dissemination of information or content to a wide audience, often across geographic boundaries.
Mass media plays an important role in shaping public opinion and attitudes, as it has the power to influence the way people think, feel, and behave.
It can provide information about news, politics, culture, entertainment, and other topics, and can also be used to promote certain ideas or values.
The rise of mass media has been closely tied to the development of new communication technologies, such as the printing press, telegraph, telephone, radio, television, and the internet. BGDG 172 Solved Free Assignment 2023
These technologies have enabled the widespread dissemination of information and entertainment to audiences around the world, and have transformed the ways in which people interact with each other and with the world around them.
However, the influence of mass media has also been the subject of criticism and concern, particularly with regard to its potential to shape public opinion and influence political outcomes.
Critics argue that mass media can be biased or manipulated, and that it may be used to promote certain agendas or values at the expense of others.
Despite these concerns, mass media remains an important and influential aspect of modern society, with the potential to inform, entertain, and shape public discourse on a wide range of issues.