Gender And Sexual Orientation Course Work

Published: 2021-06-22 00:46:20
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Gender refers to the range of characteristics of masculinity and femininity. Depending on the context, the defining characteristics range from social roles to sex and gender roles to gender identity. It defines the socially constructed roles, activities, behaviors and attributes that are deemed appropriate for both men and women. On the hand, sexual orientation refers to a pattern of attraction usually, sexual, emotional, romantic or combination of all these to an opposite sex, same sex or both sexes and the genders that associate with them. It combines an individual’s sense of private and social identity based on the attractions (McAnulty, 2006).

Throughout the history of women, there were limited career opportunities and legal rights for women than men. Motherhood and wifehood were regarded as the best professions assigned to women those days. Since the early says, women have been perceived to be intellectually inferior to men. In the colonial America, girls learned to write and read at dame schools. Their families and teachers never expected girls and young college students to embrace for a future goal other than that of motherhood and marriage. In 1870, it was estimated that women accounted for one fifth of the university students and resident colleges in the United States. The legal status of women was so unfair and unequal to women; men virtually owned their wives the same way as he did with his possession. Moreover, women were prohibited from working for the recommended time, prevented from holding different jobs such as supervisory positions. Discrimination, were at its highest, many retail and manufacturing stores declined to issue women with credit cards. Moreover, laws concerned with crime, welfare, abortion and prostitution displayed bias against women. Teaching, writing and domestic work or factory labor were the only acceptable work positions available to women. Politically, women in the United States had no right to voting since 1920 and their roles were minimal in this area.

In the contemporary world, many things have changed regarding women affairs in the United States. In education, women’s gains in educational leverage have superseded those of men over the last forty years. Younger girls and women are more likely to hold a graduate degree and more likely to graduate from college than men. In high schools, girls have been performing higher than boys on reading assessment. Moreover, there has been an enormous gain in the collective participation of women in the work force. This includes state departments such as the defense, World Affairs, Legislation, Education and others.

The number of women working as officials, administrators and managers has been rising over the past years. Women in politics have certainly revolutionized politics in America; the second majority of the American voters comprise the women. Most women have been able to battle out electives posts such as the Senator ship, Governorship and even the Presidency and have won significant milestones in the American politics. Women have stepped up their advocacy by forming movements such as the council of women and girls that advocate for equitable distribution of opportunities in the relevant field for the women. There is no doubt that the ground between men and women have immensely reduced. Many women have indulged into politics, space exploration, academia, law, scientific discoveries, and politics and engaging in national issues.

Things socially constructed are occasionally not inherently present in a community. This means that they created by the people of a society and held together by the authority and power through a collective means. Masculinity and feminism are social constructs that impact on everyone despite a person’s sexuality, gender or sexual preference. Femininity refers to the sets of roles, behaviors and attributes associated with women and girls. While masculinity is the possession of characteristics appropriate to man. The society already describes what feminine and masculinity should look like at home, marriage and in the society. Moreover, the society has placed both masculinity and femininity on opposite ends and offered us no spectrum on the same. This is because there is the existence of both masculine females and feminine males, and it is clear that this is not well represented in the polar opposite concepts in peoples’ brain.

Constructionists’ point of view is that both feminine and masculine behaviors are as a result of learning the norms in a given culture rather than an imprint of one’s genetic materials. Predominant social construction portrays masculinity as harmful to boys since it makes them behave like a man box and prevent them from undergoing a range of emotions. Boys are forced to be tough, aggressive, forced to play sports, should have money, no feeling, succeed and take charge. Constructs such as Females body builders possessing the attributes of males have made it easier to understand the whole concept of both femininity and masculinity.

The history of the lesbian, gays, bisexuals and transgender (LGBT) could be dated back to 1950s and 1960s when they were referred to as homosexuals and homophiles. In the 1970s, the lesbians’ feminists called for mass actions seeking for recognition within the larger community and society as a whole. After the famous Stonewall riots in the late 1970s, there was a change of perception and the majority of lesbians and gay people became less accepting of the transgender individuals (Simon, 2009). It is in the 1990s that people became outspoken about the LGBT with equal respect within the movement. Each community of the LGBT has been struggling to develop their own image and identity including how they will align with the other gender and sexuality based groups. In the 20th century, a lot more has changed with regard to the LGBT. There has been immense support towards this community in terms of association. The rights of this community have over the past been championed by the Western nations.

There have been heated political debates in America leading to Obama supporting the same sex marriages. Religiously, we have witnessed the ordainment of several rebels and ex catholic publicly announcing their marriages to the public. Moreover, many professionals not limited to judges, teachers, and political figures have admittedly to be either in the LGBT or are supporting their ideology.

The LGBT have many issues that impacted on their day to day activities and lives in the United States. The following social issues are relevant these group: Discrimination has adversely impacted on this Community. Many civilians have prejudiced against this group in different settings such as the in the employment, use of public accommodations and housing. Public condemnation from other institutions, countries and people has not made it easier for them. Intergroup conflicts between this group and other individuals with different sexual orientation have been witnessed particularly the murders and torture of the LGBT affiliation. The issue of ethical values and morals as indicated in religious institutions such as the Catholic and books such as the Holy Bible and Quran do not support the LBGT. Issues of equality based on sexual orientation have not gone un pointed rights and freedom of association of the members of this group have many times been taken way.

Political issues such as the legalization of the same sex marriages have recently risen up with both the protagonists and the antagonists debating on its status and the consequences it will impact on the American Society. Radicals on the left state out that the reason of vast social problems related to sexual orientation is inequality while the radical feminism point out the need for mandatory changes in the United States in pursuit of equality among all the male, female, straight and gays. On the other hand, the liberals emphasize the significance of individual freedom. Hence all people should be free to express their sexuality as long their preferences do not harm others. They hold the government to address social problems such as rape, domestic violence and sexual harassment. The conservatives believe that sexuality should be guided by the morals of right and wrong. They oppose and condemn homosexuality and other vices such as abortion and premarital sex.

These issues have been improved by the formation of Organizations that advocate for the rights and the freedom of the members from this particular group. Many have succeeded in empowering this group by ending homophobia and racism, advocating for the passage of the Employment non discrimination Act and promoting Equality.


The LGBT have championed what they so call rights of the minorities, they have used many different channels to ensure they have been heard and their demands acted upon. This means that the society we are in is extremely dynamic and not rigid for any social construction. Coincidence, that this election year period, one of the significant topics will be the issue of the LGBT. Few weeks ago, President Obama himself supported the issue of the same sex marriage in his reelection bid statement.


McAnulty, R. D. (2006). Sex and sexuality: 1. Westport, CT [u.a.: Greenwood Press.
Simon, R. J., & Brooks, A. (2009). Gay and lesbian communities the world over. Lanham, Md: Lexington Books.

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