GenderInequality in the American Society
Gender inequality often entails practices that reveal the stereotypesand prejudices that are against a certain gender. On the other hand,social stratification refers to the way that the society will rankpeople based on a hierarchy that considers a number of factors suchas the race, gender, religion or even ethnicity. The analysis of thetopic helps in identifying the daily activities that arediscriminative in nature and tend to undermine especially women. Thispaper gives an illustration of the institutionalizedand legalized inequality in the society as well as how the sexualrevolution that led to significant changes in women empowerment. Itwill also analyze the present scenario, and the progress women havemade as well as what the future holds for them based on their recentachievements. Although women faced gender inequality in theearly 1950s, the 1960s saw the sexual revolution that paved the wayfor the women to take jobs, access education facilities, and politicsthat were once considered male-dominated areas.
The gender inequality came about as a result of the men viewing thewomen as being those known to take the lower positions. It wasevident that the patriarchy society decided to honor the masculinitywhile undermining femininity because of the women’s sex. Theassumptions that women were weak arose from their nature to beemotional and the way that most men assumed that their importance inthe society was only childbearing as well as the chores in thekitchen. The government had legalized and institutionalized theinequality since women could not access education facilities. Theywere even unable to vote or vie for a post in the election. Besidesthat, the lack of education meant that they could not find anylucrative job to act as a source of income in their lives (Brown,2011). They had to be submissive to their husbands and avoidany scenarios that somehow exposed their sexuality as well. Thesexual revolution launched by the Silent Generation was important infighting the inequality that existed earlier based on inequality. Infact, the generation was essential in the civil rights where theyagitated for a change in the way that the society viewed sexualityand defined women as well. The sexual revolution was successful sincemost of the sexism assumptions were erased as the governmentimplemented legislations that allowed women to vote, seek educationand find lucrative jobs as well (Brown, 2011).More importantly, the Baby Boomers were the first generation toexperience a society that was free from the intense sexismexperienced earlier.
In the recent history, the public perceptiontowards women has changed significantly. In fact, women are evenseeking the top positions in most of the organizations in the nation.Nearly, 5% of the CEOs of the Fortune 500 companies are all women.Besides that, 17% of the women are also on the corporate boards ofthe Fortune 500 companies (Chapter 1: Women in Leadership,2015). Such statistics proves the progresswomen have made compared to the 1960s where few women could accesseducation facilities let alone the employment. The political arenahas seen women being active in keeping various legislative seats.More specifically, the 2014 midterm election showed 100 womenentering the Congress with 20 in the Senate as well as 84 womenheading to the House of Representatives (Chapter 1: Women inLeadership, 2015). In the 1989-1991 elections,only two women were in the Senate while 25 women went to the House ofRepresentatives. Such a number shows the progress women have made inbeing vocal in the society as well. The public perception of womenhas improved with the society giving them the chance to prosper. Tosome extent, the prejudice and stereotypes still exist as most of themusic videos and Hollywood movies are portraying women as sexualobjects rather than responsible people. Some aspects of institutionaldiscrimination are still present, especially in the employmentsector. For instance, the pay gap shows that women are paid a mere77 cents for every dollar that a man receives in the workplace. TheCongress has 18.1% of women, yet the same women entail a half of theUS entire population (Chu & Posner, 2013).A look at Texas reveals that nearly 25% of the women do not have ahealth insurance. Such statistics prove the presence of institutionaldiscrimination in the society (Chu & Posner, 2013).
Evidently, the future is bright for the women since they areaccessing more opportunities. The current position of the women inAmerica cannot be compared to the earlier period where they did nothave equal opportunities to succeed. For instance, they could notaccess the educational facilities in order to gain more knowledgeskills and experience. Currently, women have even outshined men interms of college enrollment as well as the college completion rates.In 2013, 37% of women in the age bracket of 25 and 29 had abachelor’s degree while only 30% of men in the same age bracket hada bachelor’s degree (Chapter 1: Women in Leadership, 2015). Thefacts show how women have focused on improving their position in thesociety by seeking educational empowerment which is the way toeconomic empowerment and power in the society. Some 20 years backthere were no CEO women in the Fortune 500 companies while currentlythe number has risen to 26 women (Chapter 1: Women in Leadership,2015). They have also accessed managerial posts and other lucrativeoccupations such as law and medicine. More importantly, the women arebeing more vocal and taking positions that were once male-dominated.This scenario proves the morale they have in being successful in thesociety. The gender inequality needs the women to seek education andeconomic empowerment that will give them a voice in the society. Theywill not achieve progress through constant complaints of how they arebeing discriminated. Instead, having favorable legislations thatprotect them as well as the knowledge, skills and experience theyhave acquired will help them to a greater extent.
In conclusion, the sexual revolution helped in eradicating theinstitutionalized inequality and paving the way for women empowermentthrough education and employment as well. Before the 1960s, women hada hard time to fit in the society because of the discrimination thatthe patriarchy society exhibited. More specifically, the societybelieved that women deserved lower roles in the society such as thehousehold chores and childbearing only. In the process, they nevergained access to the educational facilities, seek employment or evenvote. However, the sexual revolution changed everything as they arenow taking a number of roles that were once consideredmale-dominated. The scenario has proved that women are more likely torise and be successful in the future. Based on the way they haveacquired positions in the corporate as CEOs and corporate managers.The way they have acquired degrees and masters all prove that theyhave resorted to economic and educational empowerment to achievesuperiority in the society. The Christians need to understandinequality from a sociological perspective in order to acknowledgethe way women had to struggle to reach where they are. They will alsojoin hands in reducing the stereotypes and prejudices of women.
Brown, C. G. (2011). Sex, Religion, and theSingle Woman c. 1950–75: The Importance of a ‘Short’SexualRevolution to the English Religious Crisis of the Sixties. TwentiethCentury British History, 22(2),189-215.
Chapter 1: Women in Leadership. (2015). Retrieved March 12, 2016,from PewResearchCenter:http://www.pewsocialtrends.org/2015/01/14/chapter-1-women-in-leadership/
Chu, A., & Posner, S. (2013). The State of Women in America.Retrieved March 12, 2016, from Center for America Progress:https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/women/report/2013/09/25/74836/the-state-of-women-in-america/