Definition Of Sex, Sexuality, And Gender

In “Gender Defined and Undefined,” Marinucci states that the paradigmatic man and the paradigmatic woman are the “hegemonic binary” of our society. This binary praises those who follow it and demeans those who don’t. Society constructed these binaries as a means of control and a way to enforce the existing hierarchies. Thus, making it easy to identify those in society who should and should not be privileged. By examining the meanings of sex, sexuality, and gender you can understand why society creates these privileges. The classification of the Paradigmatic Woman has not greatly affected me. Growing up my mother never dressed me in girly colors or dresses but instead in denim overalls and Winnie the Pooh. My sexuality is heterosexual, my …show more content…
As West and Zimmerman point out in their article, “Doing Gender,” there are many flaws with this strict definition of sex; “perceived to be natural and rooted in biology, producing in turn profound psychological, behavioral, and social consequences” (West and Zimmerman 1987). To suggest that sex is strictly a biological factor that can’t be changed would also assume that our society is based on the traits and characteristics we associate with male and female. It also justifies the abuse of groups of individuals who don’t fit this classification. Adhering to the gender social norm would assume behaving like a man or woman which Collins, in “Toward A New Vision”, lists the characteristics that are associated with feminine and masculine; femininity means “passive, [a] follower, emotional, weak, and physical” (Collins 2010 pg. 240). Similarly, masculinity means you have to be “aggressive, leader, rational, strong, and intellectual” (Collins 2010). By listing these characteristics, Collins points out their flaws; “… this list reflect[s] either/ or dichotomous thinking and the need to rank both sides of the dichotomy…” (Collins 2010). Through the enforcement of these characteristics, you are limiting the types of people who can fit into these descriptions. The listing of these characteristics not only points out how biased they are but also how they affect societies ideas. When discussing gender in relation to the paradigmatic man and paradigmatic woman there are many exclusions that are not explained. If there is no explanation given as to people who don’t adhere to the binary they will be ridiculed. We as a society are taught to classify people as male and female biologically and socially and heterosexual or homosexual. By classifying people into normal and deviant, we are limiting our view and allowing society to tell us right from

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