Difference Between Sex And Gender Essay

1457 Words Apr 6th, 2015 6 Pages
Is there a difference between sex and gender? Or do these words mean the same thing? People commonly use the word gender to define what sex they are biologically, but in fact this word means a lot more than just the anatomy that one has. Is the way people act truly down to what genitals they possess? When we look at how gender is accomplished and also the outcome of social constraints that play a part in gender we get a complex understanding of what it means to be gendered. Many factors go into what it means to be gendered, how we measure and maintain it and also what can disrupt it.

Gendering is something that no one can escape. The moment a child enters the world and even before, we treat the girls differently from the boys (Holmes 2013, pg. 121). Girls wear pink and play with dolls, while boys are dressed in blue and play with trucks. Sex is the word used to define whether someone is male or female by the biology they possess. While gender is the term used to describe what it means to be a male or female and the social norms that go along with being that sex. A big debate surrounds whether gender is genetic or if it is learnt (Wharton 2005, pg. 20)

If gender and sex have different meanings then how do they relate to each other? The sex you are is decided when conception happens. You either have XX Chromosomes for a female or XY chromosomes for a male. When the baby is born you can clearly see which sex they are by looking at their genitals. But gender is far more…

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