Sexism in Politics Essay

2950 Words Jan 28th, 2016 12 Pages
Sexism in the Political Arena: How Gender Alters Political Representation
Sarah Moore
University of Pittsburgh

Abstract: This paper explores the topics of sexism in politics- more specifically, how the underrepresentation of women has resulted both from differences in the genders (internal/psychological variances), and also circumstances that exist in the current political climate. It is important to note that there are two different sources of this problem, if not more. Internal characteristics that lead to the underrepresentation of women include how they perceive their environment compared to men, the fact that women believe they are less qualified than men, and that they are less competitive in a
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Amounting to over half of the United States’ population, it would be ideal if the same amount of women were represented in positions such as Congress, the Executive Branch, the Judicial Branch, or even smaller outlets of local governments. In reality, only 19% of Congress is composed of women, there have been no female Commander in Chiefs after 43 presidencies, and only 4 of the 112 Supreme Court Justices have been women (UN Women, 2014). Whether the question of underrepresentation is specified to convey categories such as race, sexuality, gender, or social factors, it is undeniable that the elite who are elected very rarely represent the country’s identity as a whole. The goal of this paper is to focus on how the underrepresentation of women in politics has come about by numerous factors. More specifically, the marginalization of women reveals a deeply rooted sexist mindset that has been both institutionalized and psychologically ingrained in the minds of Americans. The fact that women must battle both internal and external opponents to make even running for office an option reflects an interesting answer as to why women may be so vastly underrepresented in American politics. In order to closely examine this daunting topic, this paper will begin with an analysis of the internally based psychological factors that hinder women from considering campaigning. These

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