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  1. Gender and Sexuality Biological, Social, and Cognitive Influences on Gender Gender Comparisons and Classification Gender Development through the Life Span Exploring Sexuality Sexuality through the Life Span

  2. Biological, Social, and Cognitive Influences on Gender Gender and Sex • Gender- Characteristics of being female or male. • Gender role: set of expectations prescribing how females and males should act, feel, and think. • Gender typing: process by which children acquire thoughts, behaviors, and feelings culturally appropriate for their gender. • Sex- Designates the biological aspects of being female or male.

  3. Biological, Social, and Cognitive Influences on Gender Biological Influences • Chromosomes— 23rd pair with X and Y • Hormones: • Estrogens • Influences development of female physical sex characteristics and helps regulate menstrual cycle • Androgens • Testosterone promotes development of male genitals and secondary sex characteristics • Examples of conditions from unusual levels of sex hormones early in development: • Congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH) • Androgen-insensitive males • Pelvic field defect • Failed sex reassignment

  4. Biological, Social, and Cognitive Influences on Gender Evolutionary Psychology View of Gender • Differing roles in reproduction placed different pressures on males and females • Key gender differences in sexual attitudes and sexual behaviors • Males — competition, violence, risk-taking • Females — parenting effort, selection of successful mate

  5. Biological, Social, and Cognitive Influences on Gender Social Influences • Differences due to social experiences: • Social role theory: gender differences result from contrasting roles of men and women • Psychoanalytic theory of gender: claims child identifies with same-sex parent by age 5 or 6 • Many disagree, claiming gender learned much earlier (even in absence of same-sex parent) • Social cognitive theory of gender:gender development results from observation and imitation, use of rewards and punishments for gender-appropriate behaviors • Mothers’ socialization strategies • Fathers’ socialization strategies

  6. Biological, Social, and Cognitive Influences on Gender Cognitive Influences • Cognitive development theory of gender: • Children’s gender typing occurs after they think of themselves as boys and girls; gender constancy must be achieved first. • Once consistently conceived as male or female, children prefer activities, objects, and attitudes consistent with this label. • Gender schema theory: • Gender typing emerges gradually in gender schemas of what is culturally gender-appropriate and inappropriate • Gender-typed behavior can occur before children develop gender constancy • Schema: cognitive structure • Gender schema: organizes world in terms of male and female

  7. Gender Comparisons and Classification Gender Stereotyping • Broad categories that reflect our impressions and beliefs about females and males: • Traditional masculinity and femininity • Males – instrumental traits • Females - expressive traits • Roles and traits – unequal social status, power • Stereotyping varies with culture • Stereotyping of occupations

  8. Gender Comparisons and Classification Young Children’s Judgments about Competency in Stereotyped Occupations

  9. Gender Comparisons and Classification Gender Similarities and Differences • Physical differences: • Females- • have longer life expectancy • less likely to develop mental or physical disorders • Resistant to infections, more elastic blood vessels • Female brains are smaller, have more folds. • Areas of brain involved in emotional expression show more activity in females. • Males- • Higher levels of stress hormones causing faster clotting and higher blood pressure. • Sexually Dimorphic Nucleus is larger in men. • Area of parietal lobe functioning in visuospatial skills is larger in males

  10. Gender Comparisons and Classification Cognitive Similarities and Differences • National standardized tests • Boys slightly better at math and science • Girls better at reading and writing • Overall, girls superior students to boys

  11. Gender Comparisons and Classification Socioemotional Similarities and Differences • Aggression: • Males more physically aggressive in all cultures • Females more verbally aggressive; use relational aggression more than men • Self-Regulation: • Males show less self-regulation, can lead to behavioral problems • Controversies over psychological differences • Overall meta analysis: • Gender differences: small to nonexistent • Physical aggression differences were moderate • Largest difference in motor skills favoring males • Males more sexually active than females

  12. Gender Comparisons and Classification Socioemotional Similarities and Differences • Gender in context: • Gender varies across contexts • Males more likely to help in perceived danger • Females more likely to volunteer to help with child • Girls show more care-giving behaviors than boys • Males more likely to show anger towards strangers and turn anger into aggression • Cultural backgrounds influence socialization

  13. Gender Comparisons and Classification Masculinity, Femininity, and Androgyny • Androgyny—presence of masculine and feminine characteristics in same individual • Bem Sex-Role Inventory: • Instrumental, expressive traits • Context influencing gender role is adaptive • Gender-role transcendence— people should be evaluated as persons, not in terms of femininity, masculinity, or androgyny

  14. Gender Development through the Life-Span Gender Development in Childhood • Children form many ideas about what the sexes are like from about 1½ to 3 years of age • Boys receive earlier and more intense gender socialization (e.g.: ‘boy code’) • Children show clear preference for same-sex peers

  15. Gender Development through the Life-Span Gender Development in Adolescence • Transition point; changes in puberty • Gender-intensification hypothesis: • Psychological and behavioral differences between boys and girls become greater during early adolescence • Increased socialization pressures to conform to traditional gender roles • Mixed messages and special problems

  16. Gender Development through the Life-Span Communication Between Men and Women • Rapport talk • Language of conversation, a way to establish connections and negotiate relationships • Preferred by women • Report talk • Language designed to give information, including public speaking • Preferred by men

  17. Gender Development through the Life-Span Adulthood and Aging • Women’s Gender Development: • Women often try to actively participate in others’ development- • Emotionally • Intellectually • Socially • Women maintain competency, self-motivation, and self-determination in relationships • Men’s gender development: • Male roles are contradictory and inconsistent • Can cause role-strain in • Health • Male-female relationships • Male-male relationships

  18. Gender Development through the Life-Span Gender and Aging • Parental imperative: • Mothers and fathers adopt different gender roles so they can raise children more effectively • Older women face double jeopardy of ageism and sexism • Older men become more feminine, less active, and more sensitive in relationships

  19. Exploring Sexuality Biological and Cultural Factors • Biological: • Sexual behavior is influenced by sex hormones • Sexual behavior is so individualized in humans that it is difficult to specify hormonal effects • Sexual motivation also influenced by cultural factors • Cultural factors: • Range of sexual values across cultures is substantial • Sexual scripts— stereotyped expectancy patterns for how people should behave sexually • Traditional religious script— sex is accepted only within marriage; sex is for reproduction and sometimes affection • Romantic script — sex synonymous with love

  20. Noncohabiting Cohabiting (married) Men Men 1% Never A few times a year A few times a month Women Women 3% 2 to 3 times a week 4 or more times a week Exploring Sexuality The 1994 Sex in America Survey

  21. Exploring Sexuality Sexual Orientation • Heterosexual attitudes and behavior: • Different categories for frequency of sex • Married couples have sex more often • Most couples enjoy traditional sex • Adultery is exception, not the rule • Men think about sex more than women • Most lead conservative sexual lives • Attitudes and behaviors of lesbians and gay males: • Bisexual: sexually attracted to both sexes • Research on biological and hormonal differences on sexual preferences unclear • Area of hypothalamus governing sexual behavior 2x larger in heterosexual males

  22. 0 Exclusively heterosexual behavior 1 Largely heterosexual but incidental homosexualbehavior 3 Largely heterosexual but more than incidental homosexualbehavior 3 Equal amounts of heterosexual and homosexualbehavior 4 Largely homosexual but more than incidental heterosexualbehavior 5 Largely homosexual but incidental heterosexualbehavior 6 Exclusively homosexual behavior Exploring Sexuality The Continuum of Sexual Orientation

  23. Exploring Sexuality Sexual Orientation • Attitudes and behaviors of lesbians and gay males: • Gender differences appearing in heterosexual relationships also occurs in homosexual relationships • Gay and lesbians experience life as minorities in dominant culture, with bicultural identity

  24. Exploring Sexuality Sexually Transmitted Infections • Gonorrhea • Syphilis • Chlamydia • Genital Herpes • HPV – causes genital warts • AIDS – sexually-transmitted disease caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) Protecting against STI’s: • Education and development of effective drug treatments • Only safe behavior is abstinence • Know your and your partner’s risk status • Obtain screening tests for STIs • Have protected, not unprotected, sex • Don’t have sex with multiple partners

  25. Exploring Sexuality Forcible Sexual Behavior • Rape: • Forcible sexual intercourse without consent; legal definitions vary by state • Victims reluctant to report rape; stats vary • 5% of rape victims are males • Date or acquaintance rape: coercive sexual activity with acquaintance or better known, a concern for colleges • Sexual Harassment: • Ranging from remarks to physical contact, blatant propositions to sexual assaults • Most victims are women in educational and workplace settings • Has serious psychological effects on victim • One person’s manifestation of power over another

  26. 50 40 30 Percentage of sample 20 10 0 Classmate Friend Boyfriend/ ex-boyfriend Acquaintance Other Offender Exploring Sexuality Rape Victim-Offender Relationships

  27. Sexuality through the Life-Span Child Sexuality • Majority of children engage in some sex play: • Usually with friends or siblings • Exhibiting or inspecting the genitals • Most motivated by curiosity • Sex play declines, but sexual interest remains high in elementary school years

  28. Sexuality through the Life-Span Adolescent Sexuality • Time of sexual exploration, experimentation, fantasies, and incorporating sexuality into one’s identity • Most have insatiable curiosity about sex • Majority develop mature sexual identity; most have times of vulnerability and confusion • Societies vary in response to adolescent sexuality

  29. Sexuality through the Life-Span Developing a Sexual Identity • Multifaceted, lengthy challenge to manage new feelings, develop identity and self-regulation • Great variety in orientations, interest levels, anxiety levels, activity, and reasons for choices in activity • Gay or lesbian identity: coming-out • Homosexual behavior in adolescence may not continue into adulthood

  30. Sexuality through the Life-Span Adolescent Sexual Behaviors • U.S. survey of sexual behavior: • Most have sex after age 15, 80% by age 19 • First voluntary partner for girls is about same age • Trend: adolescents waiting longer to have sex • Casual oral sex is common, increasing; believed to be safer and not really ‘having sex’ • Risk Factors, Youth Assets, and Sexual Problems: • Ineffective or lack of use of contraceptives • Early maturation linked to early sexual initiation; varies by ethnic group and SES • Lack of self-regulation

  31. Sexuality through the Life-Span Other Risks • Sexually transmitted infections: • 3 million U.S. adolescents acquire STIs annually • Africa: girls infected with HIV by adult men • Adolescent pregnancy: • U.S. adolescent pregnancy rates decreasing; but one of highest rates in developed world • Negative consequences for teen mother and child • Cross-cultural studies on sexual active adolescents

  32. 80 60 40 Births per 1,000 women 15 to 19 years old 20 0 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 Year Sexuality through the Life-Span Cross-Cultural Comparisons of Pregnancy

  33. Sexuality through the Life-Span Consequences of Adolescent Pregnancy • Health risks for mother and child: • Low birth rate in newborns linked to infant mortality, neurological problems, childhood illness • Young mothers more likely to: • Drop out of school; were low achievers in school • Have history of conduct problems • Come from low-income backgrounds • Live in poverty

  34. Sexuality through the Life-Span Sexuality and Aging • Emerging adulthood: • Time frame for sexual activity and singlehood • Most limit sex partners to 1 or two persons annually • Casual sex more common in ‘hooking up’ • The earlier the age of first sex, the more sexual activity in emerging adulthood • Religious adults have fewer sexual partners

  35. Sexuality through the Life-Span Sexuality and Aging • Middle adulthood: • Climacteric: midlife transition, fertility ends/declines • Women: Menopause late forties or early fifties; • Perimenopausal is transitional time • Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) • Men— less testosterone, less desire, possible erectile dysfunction (Viagra) • Late adulthood: • Men experience more changes than women • Orgasm less frequent • More direct stimulation needed • Erection problems more likely after 65 • Sexuality can be lifelong • Two-thirds of older adults satisfied