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What are the differences between boys and girls? How different are they, and what causes the differences? How is gender identity developed and how does it affect childrens behavior and attitudes? Gender identity is the awareness of ones gender and all it implies (Human Development text , 286).
Gender differences are explained as psychological or behavioral differences between both genders. There are many theories to how and why gender differences exist. Some people argue that circumcision at birth is a factor, others say the differences are greatly influenced by the human brain. Recent studies show that there are great specific differences found in both the male and female brain. Next, on one side people claim that evolution and biology is what makes us different, and the other side, people plea that there is a lot more variation to the gender roles. They say that society influences our reaction to the biological course.
Finally, today some sex differences are considered to be of social origin. Whatever the case may be, many experiments have been conducted, and although some differences are more obvious than others, boys and girls are more It has been presented, with evidence, that circumcision of male infants causes behavioral changes. Gender differences instead, may be the outcome of the alter behavior of circumcised males. There are two studies which goals were to examine the consequences and behavior of circumcision.
In 1971 it was concluded that circumcision was followed by non-rapid eye movement sleep (NREM). The amount of NREM increased and the number of NREM sleep periods increased. In 1974, after circumcision it was found prolonged wakefulness with crying during hours immediately after the procedure. From the results of these studies it can be concluded that circumcision does have effects on infant behavior. However, the clarification must be awaited. Another side to this issue is the thought that the difference in men and womens brains causes the actual differences between men and women.
During an annual meeting in Toronto in 1999, it was stated that men have more neurons in the cerebral cortex, the outer layer of the brain, and women have more neurotic, and that has the processes allowing cell communication. Males have more tightly packed and more numerous nerve cells than females. This research may show why women are more prone to depending illness than are men. Although these variations cause differences in how the brain works, neither type is said to Because there are similar gender roles in various cultures its suggested that gender differences may be biologically based. By the time a child reaches the age of 5, boys brains are close to 10 percent bigger than girls brains. Boys have more gray matter in the cerebral cortex; this difference may be why girls have greater neuronal density in the cerebral cortex.
Evidence shows that size differences in the corpus callosum are related to verbal fluency. Since girls have greater corpus callosum than boys, that my help explain why girls have better verbal skills. Another approach to this issue is the psychoanalytic approach. Freud and others considered identification an important personality development of early childhood. Freud believes that identification will happen when young children repress their wishes to posses their parent of the opposite sex and identifies with their parent of the same sex. Evidence from research shows that gender identification is a result of gender typing.
Gender typing is the socialization process where children learn their appropriate gender roles. Next, the cognitive approach. This is where the child comes to understand his or her gender by thinking about their experience. This was presented by Lawrence Kohlbergs cognitive-developmental theory. Here, Kohlberg states that children do their own gender typing. Their behavior is then organized by Finally, the socialization approach.
This is where children learn their gender roles by socialization with their peers, hence the name socialization approach. Here, gender development is the result of interacting influences, personal and social. This process starts at infancy even before a conscious understanding of gender is formed. As children regulate their activities, standards of gender-related behavior become internalized (Human Development text , 292).
This approach is also where parent and media influence fits. For example, parents express their discomfort when their children do things according to the opposite of their sex. Such as when boys play with their moms shoes, or when girls play with trucks. This is shown more by the fathers about their sons, probably because girls have more freedom than boys with the clothes they wear, games they play and their friends. Also, for the most part life portrayed on TV is more stereo typed than life in the real world. It is expected that children who watch more TV will grow up acting similar to what theyve witnessed all their The most prominent difference between the sexes is that of aggression.
Most boys, from the early stages of childhood, act more aggressively than girls both physically and verbally. Girls tend to be more empathetic, compliant and cooperative with their elders and seek adult approval more than boys do. This was also shown in a television broadcast in 1995, Boys and Girls are Different. A man put a barrier up between the children and their mothers. They could see their mothers, but couldnt reach her.
Most boys attempted to knock the barrier down, whereas most girls just stood there and cried. This finding may also be that boys and girls have different ways of adjusting to their environments. This difference may explain why men have gained political power and thought up creative inventions and women have not. Many experiments have been done with children to see exactly what are gender differences. One was performed at the University of Rochester, and concluded, due to brain differences, men and women navigate differently. Students were blindfolded and had to walk through a maze of tunnels underneath the campus.
Men maintained their sense of direction, women, however, did not. Another study, done in Canada, male and female students were asked to wait in a room alone for a study. Part of the actual study was the students waiting in the room. When they were called to be interviewed, they were asked what they could remember seeing in the room they waited in. Atypical female response was very accurate, and detailed, as opposed to the typical male response which was slim to none.
In California a study with rats was performed, where female rats were injected with the male hormone testosterone. Afterwards, the female rats reacted more like men. Is one sex smarter than the other? Intelligence test scores show no proof that one sex is infact smarter than the other.
However, females tend to do better on verbal tasks, mathematical computation, and at tasks requiring fine motor and perceptual skills; and men perform better in spatial abilities and in abstract mathematical and scientific reasoning. Although these differences occur early in life, by knowing a childs sex it cannot be determined whether he or she will be faster, stronger, smarter, more obedient, or more assertive than another. The issue of gender differences has been around for many years. Nothing has really changed except for new theories that come into play. Today its more normal to see women in the working world with men, doing similar jobs, and men staying at home with their children.
However, this idea still isnt 100 % normal. Men are still praised more than women, and although women are in the news, theyre not always noted for their accomplishments. As a child growing up, I can remember always wanting to be with my father, but always wanting to be like my mother. There are many universal differences between men and women, like that of passive and aggressive, and the brain differences. Also those of estrogen and testosterone, which I think has a lot to do with the sexes differences. But, there isnt anything that can be done to change those differences.
Its the contrasts that are portrayed in the media and everyday life that need some work. All people are (supposedly) created equal. Its about time to realize that statement and act on it. Women and men should be treated differently, according to their gender, for example in a case of sexual harassment, but shown the same respect whatever the case may be. Bibliography: Papalia, Diane E. , Olds, Sally Wendkos, Feldman, Ruth Dublin. (2001).
Human Development. pp 286 - 294. web web web web
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Research essay sample on Differences Between Men Boys And Girls