The primary goal of this article is to compose an article on Gender Codes. Essentially, in order to complete this task, a well-written research report that relates to and promotes multiple claims will be written down. Most critically, the statements must be rational or make sense to the reader. To begin, gender refers to the biological status of being either male or female (Foster 4). Sex is typically distinguished from individuals experiencing cultural and social distinctions. Gender may also be described as the characteristics that distinguish between femininity and masculinity (Foster 5). Lastly, Gender codes/coding refers to the process of assigning or giving particular behaviors or traits predominantly or exclusively to females or males. Basically, when it comes to Gender Codes/coding, different traits and characteristics are assigned to either females or males.
As mentioned earlier, this paper is going to discuss about Gender Codes. Basically; in a lay man’s language, Gender Codes refers to different characters or traits that are assigned exclusively to females or males. Secondly, a Gender Code can also be defined as a source or list that contains specific terms that are used to specify the gender of an individual and assign a code to each of the sources that have been identified (Gender 15). In order to complete on this paper, focus will be given on what Gender Codes entail, its role/importance/purpose and how it works. Lastly, this paper will give a detailed overview on different examples of Gender Codes.
Gender and its related fields of study are one of the most controversial topics in the World today. Basically; in reference to Gender Codes, it is safe to state the fact that Gender is more than a term that is used as an identity or a differentiator between male or female. According to scholars who have majored in the fields of Gender Codes, it is with no doubt that Gender also involves the process of observing the reactions and actions of an individual (Misa 16). Basically, males and females have different mannerisms/actions and reactions. This is reflected from how they dress, make speeches and behave. A good example that can be used to explain on this point is that males are characterized with specific types of clothes.
Apart from Scotland where men where dresses, It is quite impossible to find a man wearing a dress, heels and applying makeup. Only females do that. Alternatively, it is also hard to find females wearing clothes that belong to man. When we look at this scenario, it is safe to state the fact that dressing is a form/source of gender code in that it serves to differentiate males from females (Misa 27). Maintenance of the hair is also part of dressing. In most cases, Women are characterized to have long hair while men have shorter hair. Based from this example, it is safe to state the fact that dressing is a strong form of gender code. It works by differentiating what people are wearing.
Secondly, gender codes are also assigned/reflected through one’s Physical body build – up. A good example that can be used to explain on this argument is that according to Scholars men appear to be physically different than women in that they are more masculine (Foster 19). From a far, in most cases you can be able to tell whether one is male or female based on how they are physically presented. Some of the Physical features that can be used to differentiate males from females is the fact that most females have broadened hips while men do not. Secondly, men have a much broader chest than Women.
This are just but a few of the notable physical differences. Still on the Physical layout, In reference to a research that was conducted by sociologist Erving Goffman (taking photographs of a man and a woman separately), it was identified that most males appear to have a face that does not have any form of expression (Gender 31). This means it is might be a little difficult to gather whether he is sad or happy as compared to the female counterparts. While taking the photographs Erving Goffman also noted that men have shoulders and a head that are squarely shaped. On the other hand, most of the Women that Erving took photos of had their head tilted on either of the left or the right sides (Gender 43). Their eyes were also widened to a larger extent as compared to the males. Basically, all this features can be identified or related with Gender Code/source. This means that assigning traits/characters to either the male or female is largely related with their Physical layout and capabilities.
It is also important to there is a slight variation in Gender Codes depending on one’s origin or background (Misa 43). A good example that can be used to explain that Gender codes defer is the fact that some roles that are identified to be done by Men are done by women in Other Countries. For instance picking/dropping children from School is not a gendered role, however, in Countries such as Italy Parenting is strongly gendered and is based on Gender Codes (Foster 40). When we look at Italy, in most cases, it is the role of females/mothers to pick or drop Children in school. It is very difficult to spot a male/father picking their children from School (Foster 49). Basically, when we look at this scenario, it is safe to state the fact that Gender Codes are closely related to the daily chores that men and women perform. Certain chores/roles can be used to differentiate whether one is a male or a female.
Gender Codes also come in when we see Males and Females having a different sense of work occupations (Gender 37). For example women are supposed/expected to have clean jobs such as being a librarian, teacher or a secretary. Generally, in most cases it is difficult to find Males serving as librarians or secretaries as most people perceive that such roles/job opportunities are meant for Females only (Gender 48). Other occupational Gender Codes include the fact that Women/Females are supposed to be nurses while their male counterparts are supposed to be Doctors. However, it is important to note that most of this Gender Codes develop as a result of Gender Stereotype in the Society. As much as certain jobs/roles are perceived to be done/accomplished by Women, It is safe to state the fact that it is not wrong for either Males or females to perform roles that are meant for the opposite gender.
Lastly, when we look at Gender Codes, it is safe to state the fact that they help one to identify one’s gender is one way or another. Apart from the use of visual aid to identify whether one’s physicality and gender, Gender Codes can be used to show gender (Gender 61). A good example that can be used to explain on this is that some of the roles such as cooking, preparing meals and ensuring that the Kitchen and the entire house is clean is perceived to be the work of Females. It is also perceived that Males are supposed to be the breadwinners, they are supposed to ensure that they sort out all the bills. Males are also supposed to protect their own family from any harm.
However, it is important to note the fact that as mentioned earlier, most of the tasks that are delegated to both genders are as a result of Gender Stereotype (Foster 56). Generally, it is safe to state the fact that Gender Codes closely relate to the culture of an individual and as a result it shapes the normative ideas that about masculinity and femininity. This is the main reason why different communities have varying ideas based on Gender Codes, therefore, it is quite safe to state the fact that Gender Codes at some level go hand in hand with Gender Stereotypes.
Foster, G. A. Queering Repression and Gender Codes. In Disruptive Feminisms: Raced, Gendered, and Classed Bodies in Film (pp. 28-54). Palgrave Macmillan US. 2016.
Gender, The. “The Codes of Gender.” Top Documentary Films. N.P., 2017. Web. 18 Nov. 2017.
Misa, Thomas J., ed. Gender codes: Why women are leaving computing. John Wiley & Sons, 2011.