A group that is sociallycategorized as different from the norm in society are often negatively vieweddifferently and face harsh treatment. Stereotypes are introduced to society ata young age, even before someone is born such ashen parents are expecting amale or a female at birth. In society, we all have a “shared set of languagesor rules” (Dennison 1.16.2018). This creates a system called gender codes inwhich the gender binaries are enhanced. In which we are expected to look, act,and behave a certain way in society.
However, when someone disrupts the binarybetween what it means to be a male or female, the risk of being viewed as an”imposter” and being more prone to stereotypes becomes more prevalent (Dennison1.16.2018). Children are beingexposed to the different norms of society at a young age. For example, in thearticle, “Talking to Boys the Way We Talk to Girls”, Yang focuses on the ideathat there are different ways that parents are communicating with their sonscompared to their daughters. In the article fathers “are more focused onachievement” (Yang 2017) for their sons compared to daughters who are treatedwith a focus on the loving care and emotions (Yang 2017).
This enhances thestereotypes that are set upon our society. This shows that it is moreculturally acceptable for males to focus on the “masculinity” aspect of theirpersonality rather than “femininity”. Parents are raising their children, basedon what is socially and culturally acceptable to society. An expressive cultureexample from the class that showcases how stereotype threats play a role ingender codes is bathrooms. Bathrooms are a type of infrastructure in whichgender binaries are presented on the door (Dennison 1.
16.2018). This is often aplace of violence dueto reasons that if your identity does not fit the sign on the door, it willprobably a place of harassment and violence (Dennison 1.16.2018). Bathrooms areonly enhancing the stereotypes that enhance the gender codes that are used insociety. It is supporting the idea that there is a clear difference between howsociety views a male and a female.Magazine Covers are often used as a type of media todistribute stereotypes about gender.
Magazine covers create the norm about howa male and a female should act. However, for the individuals who challenge anddisrupt gender codes, this leads to stereotype threats. Whenpeople begin to disrupt the binary norms or in general begin showing qualitiesof the other gender. Such as the author of this comic strip described hisyounger self-having hobbies that, “were perceived as feminine-likecooking, dancing, singing” (Humphris 2017).
He would become embarrassed abouthis interest and often stopped doing those hobbies. Due to the ostracizingnature of society which often leads to stereotyping threats and people beingviewed as “imposters” that do not “fit” in society (Dennison1.16.2018). There are a set of expectations in society, and people are afraidof living up to that negative expectation. Overall, people should be able todecide the type of person they want to be and other people’s genderexpectations should not affect that decision. Society and people inpower create these stereotype threats and creates these gender binaries.