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Political Spectrum. Continuum Measures social or economic issues In the USA, these positions vary by state. Range of Political Ideas. Far Left---Left—Middle—Right—Far Right Extreme Liberal-----------------Extreme Conservative Political Attitudes Change over Time

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political spectrum
Political Spectrum
  • Continuum
  • Measures social or economic issues
  • In the USA, these positions vary by state
range of political ideas
Range of Political Ideas
  • Far Left---Left—Middle—Right—Far Right
  • Extreme Liberal-----------------Extreme Conservative
  • Political Attitudes Change over Time
    • Mid 1960s, majority of population leaned left
      • Civil Rights
      • Women’s Rights
    • 1980s, majority shifted to right
      • Anti-ERA movement
      • Moral majority
variations in political ideas
Variations in Political Ideas
  • By time
  • By Region
    • Massachusetts and Minnesota
      • Liberal
    • Indiana and Texas
      • Conservative
  • By Ethnicity and Religion
    • Jewish Liberal
    • Asians Conservative
social liberals
Social Liberals
  • Lean to the left
  • Shape their own lifestyles, Free to Decide on Moral Questions
  • Favor expanding opportunities for women
  • Pro-Choice
  • Propose rights for gay men and lesbians
social conservatives
Social Conservatives
  • On the right (side of the continuum)
  • Respect the traditional family
    • Marriage forever
    • Children
    • Men at work, women at home
  • Criticize too much individualism
  • Favor Pro-Life
  • Look to the past, tradition, for answers
existing political system
Existing Political System
  • Both Liberal and Conservatives want changes to occur within the current system
  • Radicals, those “off the spectrum,” want change of the system, itself
    • Extremely liberal or extremely conservative
statistical breakdown
Statistical Breakdown
  • Extreme Liberal
  • Liberal
  • Slightly Liberal
  • Middle
  • Slightly Conservative
  • Conservative
  • Extreme Conservative
decision making
  • Social
  • Economic
  • Political debates about moral judgments about how people should live
    • Feminism
    • Abortion
    • Homosexual Marriages
    • Death Penalty
  • Liberals
    • Favor expanding opportunities for women
    • Pro-choice
    • Greater rights for homosexuals
  • Conservatives
    • Want women to stick to , embrace, and enjoy traditional roles
    • Pro-Life
    • Homosexuals should choose traditional roles
    • Endorse Death Penalty
  • Decisions about how a society should distribute its material resources
    • How much control government should have
    • How much social inequality there should be
  • Liberals favor government regulation of the economy to reduce inequality
    • Free-market, laissez-faire is BAD
    • Higher minimum wage and high taxes on rich to pay for social services for the poor
  • Conservatives want limited government role
    • Market sets wage levels
    • Want lower tax rates so people keep more of their earnings and take responsibility for themselves
politics by demographics
Politics by Demographics
  • High Education, Good Wealth lead to “good” social position
    • Tend to be Liberal, more tolerant of difference in lifestyles
  • Little Education, Little Wealth tend to have “lower” social position
    • Tend to be conservative on social issues
    • Tend to be liberal on economic issues
  • Very little difference in the way men and women vote or make decisions. Social position determines political ideology.
feminism as the study of gender with goal of equality
Feminism,as the Study of Gender with Goal of Equality
  • History of modern feminist movement began in the USA in the 1840s
    • “Spin=off” of Anti-slavery movement
    • In 1840s women could not own property or keep earnings or vote
    • 1848, Seneca Falls, NY
      • National Women’s Suffrage Association
      • Extreme liberal views for the time
      • 1920, Nineteenth Amendment gave women the right to vote
  • 19th Amendment did not equalize men and women in society
    • Workplace equality
    • Reproductive rights
three types of feminism
Three Types of Feminism
  • To solve the problem of patriarchy
    • Liberal Feminism
    • Socialist Feminism
    • Radical Feminism
theories about gender
Theories about Gender
  • Biological
  • Sex-Role
  • Social Constructions Theories
continuum of feminism
Continuum (of Feminism)
  • Radical ---Socialist---Liberal---Conservative
  • M and W who think people should be able to freely choose and develop their talents and ideas
  • Reform approach, social institutions
  • Goal: M and W free to enjoy the same rights/rewards/opportunities
  • Objective: Pass the ERA
Support laws that combat prejudice and discrimination
  • Endorse policies like maternity/parental leave, childcare facilities in the workplace
  • Don’t expect the same social standing
    • Believe that different people have different talents and
    • Believe that talent and effort raise some people above others
  • There should be no barriers in people’s way of life based on sex
  • Not reformist: Doubt that the existing institutions can end patriarchy
  • Support a Marxist-style Class Revolution so we can have equality for all
  • Believe that Capitalism oppresses women because it forces them into domestic “slavery” and to accept low/no wages
Capitalism forces women to be dependent upon men (for economic security)
  • Somewhat Important to abolish capitalism and replace it with some sort of social collectivity where all people share domestic tasks
  • If the work is shared there will be no class difference, no domination of one sex or group by another
  • Revolution is necessary before any economic conditions can change
  • Patriarchy is based on concept of gender, so the idea of gender must be abolished in order to bring about equality
  • The roots of gender differences are biological. . . only W can have children
    • Motherhood is the reason for inequality
The family is not an economic unit but a form of institutionalized heterosexuality, limiting women to home and childcare
  • New technologies give people power over reproduction and childcare (bottles, in vitro fertilization)
  • Heterosexuality and Family are no longer necessary for reproduction
all three left positions
All Three Left Positions
  • All agree that patriarchy must be dealt with, all agree that change is needed
  • Disagree on how to make the changes
  • We could be at the edge of a gender-free society
  • (Right wing)
  • Adhere to Essentialism
    • Gender DOES matter—not just a social construction; it’s biological and real
    • Valorize in the differences (feminine vs. masculine)
      • Women are better nurturers, human relations, so they are more effective than men in certain venues like decision-making and conflict resolution
Core biological difference between men and women, and that difference MATTERS
    • Tend to uphold stereotypical beliefs
    • Views have support in brain, physiological, and psychological research
    • Females almost always take care of young children
      • Girls get immediate access to gender identity
      • Boys develop social relations based on perceived differences from the caretakers
Boys develop gender roles based on individual autonomy (independence)
    • Independence is more important than personal connections
    • Autonomy and separation matter: creates masculinity
  • Girls develop gender roles based on social or community relations
    • Connections matter more than independence
    • Interdependence and caring for others matters
Men b/c of testosterone
    • More aggressive
    • Sexually dominant
    • More war-like
  • Women b/c much less testosterone
    • More peaceful
    • Caring and nurturing
  • Essentialism was the 60s Radical Feminist view
  • Family was understood to be the basic social unit (of larger family, city, state, nation)
    • Defined as paternalistic and hierarchical (patriarchal)
    • Perfect democracy (at the same time)
      • Equality would emerge (from an imperfect model?)
Men had authority over women
    • Grandpa held authority over in-laws and women
    • Children had no rights, girls less so than boys
  • Essential feminists of the 60s tried to identify a little world of democracy inside the traditional family
    • Rationalized that the deepest sense of self and identity was determined in the family, concluding that the family life led to the success or failure of its individuals
      • Personal = Political
      • Heroes/ Business Leaders come from the family
Girls and Women are just as valuable, are equally important, to the family b/c of their separate roles
  • Culture still says (2002) that the family is important to success of society (and its individuals)
abortion controversy
Abortion Controversy
  • Liberals: Legal access to abortion is the key to women having control over their bodies (economy, career, etc.) during childbearing years and for their entire life.
    • Establishes independence from men when they (women) have more income earning opportunities.
Conservatives: Killing of unborn children; the issue is a matter of life and death
    • Nothing to do with economics or independence
mild statistics
Mild Statistics
  • A typical woman receiving an abortion:
    • Is in her 20s
    • Has already had one
    • Is probably white (58%)
    • Is unmarried (81%)