Gender Inequality in the Work Place
Gender inequality and The Work Place The society in which we live has been shaped historically by males. The policy makers have consistently been males and therefore it is not surprising that our society reflects those biases which exist in result of this male dominating society. One might think that gender inequality in the work place is rooted in what shapes future employees and employers. Whoever said men and women are equal?
Women have always taken a back seat to men in American society. This is not only found in the United States, but in other countries as well. The problem of men and women not being equal can be traced back to the Declaration of Independence. The Declaration of Independence proclaimed that all men are created equal. There was no mention of women being equal, only men. At the time of the drafting of the document, the men had all the power.
The document was even drafted by a man; Women were confined to the home to take care of the domestic housekeeping duties. Sociologist Perspective In my research on work place inequality, I read a perspective from a sociologist named Sandra Bem who focuses on gender. However, unlike most female sociologist, Bem chooses not to focus on the differences between males and females, but rather on their similarities.
She says that polarized gender socialization, the way that we assign masculine or feminine characteristics to things such as walking and talking to make males and females appear to be different, keeps us from realizing that the sexes are more alike than they are opposite. Men and women have the same needs for food, clothing, shelter, affection, belonging and so on. Whether by choice or economic necessity, woman have entered the paid labor force in numbers recent years, and so they should be entitled to equal pay and respect.
Although many people who know these statistics are optimistic about the gain women have made in the United States specifically in employment, it should be noted that women’s positions as a social category in the labor force is lower than men’s in term of status, opportunities and salary. Feminist researchers have used the advancements of women into top-tier management jobs as a litmus test for how well women are faring in the labor force as a whole. Studies continue to confirm that women hold a small percentage of the top positions. Causes of Gender Inequality in the Workplace
The causes of gender equality in these positions stem from four stereotypes; Sexism : American cultural belief that women are best suited for jobs that emphasize service, nurturing, housekeeping, men best suited for careers of high-level decision making and authority, Lack of qualifications: Men typically have more education and job experience than women 28% of men age 25+ have completed at least 4 years of college 27% of Women Men have more job experience because women loose time during pregnancy and child care, The glass ceiling: subtle and unconscious discrimination that prevents them from reaching higher and better-paying positions for which they are qualified. Women and minorities make up 30% of middle managers in U. S. but less than 1% of chief execs, networking: Men use golf clubs, other rec places where women were discouraged from going. The Functionalist Perspective
According to functionalist Talcott Parsons (1955), gender inequality is inevitable because of the biological division of labor: Men are generally stronger than women and have certain abilities and interest. Parson said, men find themselves more suited to be goal oriented and women to expressive. Other functionalist explanations of gender inequality focus on the human capital that men and women bring to the workplace. According to human capital explanations, what individuals earn is based on choices they have made, including choices about the kinds of training and experiences they accumulate. For example, human capital analysts argue that women diminish their human capital when they leave the labor force to engage in childbearing and child care activities.
So this is why they have less experience. It takes two to tangle that’s unprecedented. Conclusion/Solution Inequality has kept in place because of beliefs and practices that have been drilled into people’s minds for so long. When will women be treated as equals to men in the work place? I don’t see a change happening in the near future. Women are slowly being treated more as equals to men but the gap will never narrow to complete equality. Women should, not only be treated as equal in the work place, but also in everything else as well. Whether it is a computer scientist, an athlete, or a president of the United States, women should be treated as equal to men.
Gender discrimination has gone too far and we, as a society, have to draw the line. We can’t change past issues, but we can certainly change the future. Work Cited: “The Declaration of Independence. ” The Declaration of Independence. N. p. , n. d. Web. 10 Feb. 2013. Greenbuam, Vicky. “Seeing through the Lenses of Gender: Beyound Male/Female Polarization. ” English Journal 88. 3 (1999): 96-99. Web. 10 Feb. 2013. Kendall, Diana Elizabeth. Social Problems in a Diverse Society. Boston: Pearson, 2013. Print. ——————————————– [ 1 ]. Web. 10 Feb. 2013 [ 2 ]. Greenbuam, English Journal 88. 3, 1999 [ 3 ]. Kendall, 2013. [ 4 ]. Kendall, 2013, Pg. 94