Gender division in the Family , division de genero en la familia, Apuntes de Sociología de la Familía. Universidad de Salamanca (USAL)

Gender division in the Family , division de genero en la familia, Apuntes de Sociología de la Familía. Universidad de Salamanca (USAL)

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Gender division in the family

Carmen de la Gándara Velázquez



1.Concept definitions


3.Emergence of social roles

4.Origin and causes of the division

5.Division of housework's

6.Domestic work in new forms of family

7.Conclusions (ME FALTA ESTE PUNTO)


1.Concept definitions

First of all, since my point of view is important to know some basic concepts about

family and gender because this point can help us to understand that there are differences

between women and men and that these differences created divisions of genre and


-Family: According with the definition of family since a sociological perspective , The

family is the social basic unit of the whole social structure, based on the bows of

conjugal and consanguineous kinship, which are established by the route of the

marriage and the procreation of the children. from her other social formations are born,

the social primary network that exercises the intermediary's paper between the

individual and the society. The life and the form of the family comes determined for the

economic social commanding regime and for the character of the social relations in his

set, the familiar relations are like a subsystem that they integrate as a totality and there

is related to a system more wide that it is the society in general.

The interpretation of the family like group is represented as a small system of affective,

interpersonal and intimate relations.

The life of the family, it is characterized so much by the development of material

processes, which include the biological natural, economic relations and of consumption

that they assure the subsistence of his members, since for spiritual processes, that they

include elements of psychological character: affective processes, ideas and feelings of

each one of his members.

There are multiples definitions, according to the function there is several definitions,

function biosocial, economic, cultural and spiritual.

According with the definition of the dictionary of sociology to Salvador Ginner, it is

designates to a social group constituted by persons linked by the blood, the marriage or

the adoption characterized by a common residence, economic cooperation, reproduction

and care of the descent.

According to G Murdock there are four functions, sexually, procreation, socialization

and economic cooperation.

But the performance of these functions they change in the time, societies and social


-Gender: the gender is a social construction that is learned since the childhood.

Feminism: "Movement that demands for the equal women rights than for the men. ”

Male chauvinist:"Attitude of dominance of the males with regard to the women. ”

Hembrism: the opposite to the male chauvinist

Sexism: "Preponderant attention to the sex in any aspect of the life. ”

So the sexism against the men is hembrism and the sexism against the women is male


Since the domestic tasks are associated with the feminine thing, the women keep on

realizing more domestic work because this is part of the construction of its identity of

genre, of its femininity.


Family is an institution very important in the society that foresees that it keeps on being a

kind as economic mattress , family is not also a giving love, education and the main

socialization instruments. One can observe that for countries in the southern hemisphere the

role of families has been maintained and constitutes the basis of society.

The family is the main supporter for individuals, what´s more is the main values and ideas

giving ,so the education given by a family can keep on mind and form values patrons in the

individuals when they are adults. For this reason the education in the family is so important.

3.Emergence of social roles

According to psychologists, the emergence of social roles is giving by learning schema theory

that consist in one artificial or exaggerated distinction between masculine and feminine by

looking at the world. The social-role theory tells that we learning at the model , the

evolutionary perspective explain that the role as a solution to the best adaptation and the

biological perspective: influence of masculine and feminine roles (evolutionary and historical)

and changes by current social and cultural influences.

4.Origin and causes of the division:

As I mentioned before the gender is a social construction that everybody learnt since

childhood by family , group of age and social media, sometimes, the gender and the sex

do not correspond each other.

The gender perception is full of stereotypic, Since the domestic tasks are associated with

the feminine thing, the women keep on realizing more domestic work because this is

part of the construction of its identity of genre, of its femininity. the women learn that it

is expected from them precisely for a profile specializing in the domestic tasks, and it is

a question of a complex process reinforced by diverse institutions, in diverse levels.

The family structure is still unequally distributed in his sexual roles, in the exercise of

the power and of all those social actions that determine his dynamics.

Provided that the family is a social institution, the structure of the family is governed by

a juridical regulation and default of obligations and rights that relatives distribute of

unequal form between the members and that regulate the conducts and determine the

hierarchical organizations of roles and status. There exists some regulatory order that

legitimizes his existence and the family is defined better as structure when the order is

of the juridical type. In agreement to F. Engels the familiar institution is of historical

character and is determined by the economic base of the society . In his work " The

origin of the family, the private property and the State ". The dialectical relation

between the degree of development of the work strengths of the company and the type

of social relations of production with the types of social relations of production with the

types of family, the form of marriage and the social organization that the primitive

communities assume. It is with the latter step of the development of the family, ensued

from the appearance of the property deprived on the means of production, which appear

also the features of the transmission of the inheritance for paternal route, happening the

man (father) to occupy the dominant place inside the family and relegating the woman

to a secondary plane, aspects that still today demonstrate in the contemporary family.

Earlier and during the industrialization the patriarchal system was receiving more and

more force where the man was working out of the hearth and the woman there did not

have the option to decide and had left relegated the husband and to take care of the

children and of the hearth, therefore one of the strongest bases of the patriarchy and the

sexist differences in the societies is the family.

Martín Serrano affirmed that “The genre violence is not restricted to the relation in the

couple, also it fulfils its functions of control, of abuse and of development of the women

in the interactions progenitors-children in the dynamics of integration, in the groups of

pairs of friends, in the labour relations, in the commercial use of the public

communication” and that the allocation of asymmetric rolls between the genre is innate

to the family model, which only works when this asymmetry remains. and with her the

consistent dependence of the women be mothers, wives or daughters”, this scheme that

arises in the families recurs in the companies and in the society.

Division of housework's

According to the model of the century XX to man breadwinner the genre asymmetry

rolls man and woman is divided in productive /reproductive. There are two groups of

theories that have different explanations. The micro perspective explain the decisions

family and the interaction between the members on the share-out of the tasks inside the

housekeeping and the theories on relative resources. According to Becker and the new

economy of the hearth the specialization of the women is the result of the human capital

and the characteristics of the labour market, women have less educational level, its

labour income is less.

Since the point of bargaining ,Lundberg and Pollack 1996 believes in the theories of

negotiation. The decisions hearth do not take in unit but very member prefers and must

negotiate to come to a balance; this bargaining power depends on the contribution to the

hearth of the individual, measured in terms of income.

With the incorporation of the women at the highest educational levels and to the labour

market on time finished, its bargaining power inside the hearth increases, what would

imply a decrease of its time dedicated to the domestic work in favour of a more

egalitarian share-out.

The factors that influence the negotiation capacity are basically the same resources

raised by Becker: education and income and other factors that are immediate are the

available time ,and share capital (aptitude to modify the share-out of the productive and

reproductive work if the human capital of one of the members of the couple is

penetrated to other. The time dedicated to the home labour is the labour situation, the

more dedication to stipendiary work, the less implication in the domestics task, the

women who work on time finished do less percentage of tasks than the women who do

not work According to Gershuny, when both members of the couple have jobs , they

have more just share-out with differences that depend on the type of market share and of

the available time. In the case of men the result are not clear, which work less hours out

of house realize more tasks the descent in the proportion of domestic work that the

women carry out is due to the fact that they do less, and not to that the men do more, in

some cases, the worker women increase the contribution to the domestic work when its

couple remains without work and this one is been difficult of explaining from the theory

of the relative resources.. .

To know if the tasks division is egalitarian, it is interesting to us to know who takes

charge of every task in major measurement, and not only how long he devotes himself

in whole to the domestic work inside the couple.

The care of the children sometimes is included in domestic tasks and sometimes not,

due to the emotional component. Fathers used to spend less time to care of children than

mothers, according to Kruger, mother spend more time making activities and develop

more affect than fathers , and dedicate less time to find a better job and selfdevelop and

participate less than fathers in social life.

In the case of children, if the family have a high educative level the children participate

more than others whose family don´t have such a good level.

6.Domestic work in new forms of family

Not married couples distribute the domestic work of form more egalitarian than the

married one, the explanations for this empirical regularity are diverse ,couples that live

together have a few values of genre more egalitarian than the couples that prefer to

marry. they show change in the division of the tasks towards more traditional rolls when


Same sex couples are more egalitarian because they would allow us to distinguish the

weight of factors related to the resources opposite to the socialization. In these couples,

both members are of the same genre, therefore they have been socialized in similar

values and there is much more probable that there have similar ideas on the division of

domestic labour ,major heterogeneity of rolls and similar identities of genre.


We can conclude that the family is the most important institution and is the base of the

company, in the family values are obstinate and culture that later is transmitted in

society because of it is important a familiar egalitarian and equitable base. In addition

the divisions ,have origin in the history with the arrival of the capitalism and in a culture

that supports the roles of kind and the patriarchy one.

It is important to outline the differences in the division of kind in families with an

educational high level and in not married pairs or of the same sex, this type of family

presents minor degree or none of division of kind and a more just and equitable

distribution of the tasks. The gender is just a social construction but have an important

power in the society and some people assume their gender as something natural and that

they must do and according they must be their behaviour, but this is not true. This is a

problem to the society and make easier the expansion of gender division, in the family

as in consequence in the society involving inequality in jobs , violence in family , male

chauvinism, not acceptation of homosexuality and transgender people. So the culture,

the age cohort , the educational level , and the employ , the gender, and the kind of

couple can determinate the grade of equality in the family.

The gender discrimination affect negatively to women and men, but specially women

cause don´t have the same rights that men.


Rodríguez Fernández, N.:"Un acercamiento a la familia desde una perspectiva

sociológica", en Contribuciones a las Ciencias Sociales, Mayo 2012,

Giddens, Género y sexualidad.

Notes of the last course of Social Inequality

Salvador Ginner ,Conceptos Sociológicos Diccionary

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