University Culture Lecture 5 by rt3463df


									University Culture Lecture 5/6
  (lecture 5 was cancelled)

  SEXuality...the other can of worms
• Ongoing class assignments
  – Paper
  – Newsletter
  – Portfolio

• SEXuality - who/what puts the SEX in sexuality?
   20%                Mid-term Paper (Due Feb. 25)
• One of the main issues studied by sociologists is the concept
  of power. Choose one on-campus situation or event you have
  witnessed, have been involved in, or wish to learn more
  about. Apply both Dorothy Smith’s concept relations of ruling
  AND Michel Foucault’s concept episteme to better
  understand that situation or event.
• Take your idea to the library’s information or reference desk
• 3 pages of single-spaced TEXT (not counting cover page and
  References page)
• Use two “academic” references (journals, texts) and one “pop
  culture” reference (newspapers, flyers, videos, youtube™,
  radio shows, posters, ...)
• Be consistent in using an official format guide (APA, MLA, ...)
  Writing Centre 491-6202, Burke 115
10%Newsletter Contribution (Due Mar. 9)
• Our class will create one newsletter during the
  term. Ask a university graduate what they wished
  they had known, done, or not done during their
  undergraduate degree.
  – Submit:
     • 1. your question
     • 2. their response, which will be considered Anonymous in our
     • 3. a couple of your own sociological interpretations of their
 20%            Student Portfolio (Due Mar. 25)
• This is an ongoing journal/scrapbook assignment
  throughout the term. Totalling at least 5 pages, collect
  articles, photos, sketches, or other university culture
  artifacts and tape, paste, or staple them onto computer
  paper. This could help you isolate your paper topic.
• Widen your commonsense and sociological knowledge
  about your university experience concerning issues which
  might otherwise remain underground, undervalued, or
   – For example, you might become interested in several issues
     including PAWS, Campus Security, and eco-groups. OR, your
     portfolio entries might focus on one situation, such as being a
     foreign student at SMU.
• Generate 5 sociological questions relating to some of your
  scrapbooking entries and write/type them on the final
  page prior to final submission.
                 ON TO THE READING
• When we consider gender to be either and exclusively female or male
  (based on primary sex characteristics), that excludes many people
  and their experiences, hopes, and dreams. That is, we pin gender
  labels on sex and sexuality labels. So, we’re talking about three things
  here, at least: gender, sex, and sexuality --- the latter of which is one
  intersection of how we use the first two.
• It does serve some people to attach ideals to gender; but, does it
  serve wider society? Not always. It is worth approaching gender, sex,
  and sexuality from many perspectives because it calls into question
  the large institutional forces which dictate our gender, sex, and
  sexuality: family, religion, health, work, education, sports...
• One social site to gain a different perspective on gender is gender
  transitioning (recall the video on Mark Angelo Cummings from the
  last class). Remember: as researchers we must get as close as
  possible to others’ experiences
    Ideas about gender are generally
  dependent on our ideas about sex of
• Dozier flips that around to help us better
  understand gender by asking:
  – What if our ideas about sex depended on our
    ideas about gender?
                             • Dozier: “Sex, gender, and
                               sexuality, then, are all to
                               varying degrees socially
                               interpreted, and all contribute
                               to an overarching concept of
       TODAY’S READING         gender that relies on both
                               perceived sex and behaviors
Dozier, R. (2005). Beards,     and their attribution as
     breasts, and bodies:
                               masculine or feminine” (p.
 Doing sex in a gendered
      world. Gender and        300).
 Society, 19 (3), 297-316.

                             • What does this mean?
                    The study:
• On the changing behaviors and interactions of
  Female-To-Male (FTM) transitioners and how those
  are perceived by others; interviewed 18 born-
  females who transed to better understand the
  relationship between perceived gender and sex
   – Used snowball technique: one person told him about someone
   – Methodology also included grounded theory: seeking patterns in
     the interview data
   – Research assumption: masculinity and femininity are not
     necessarily innately linked to male and female, respectively;
   – Also, the study emphasized the importance to include the body
     in transgender interaction studies.
• He was also an “insider” - “I believe being trans identified
  gave me easier access to trans people and made it easier for
  interviewees to confide in me not only because they felt
  more at ease but because I had familiarity with common
  cultural terms, customs, and issues” (p. 304).
   – Very reflexive research
             Discussing some key quotes
• “In the United States, the term “gender” is
  increasingly used as a proxy for the term “sex”
  (Auerbach 1999). My own small rebellion against
  this tendency is to respond literally: When asked        • His own
  to indicate sex, I reply female; when asked for            reflections
  gender, I reply male. Perhaps I am doing little to
  change concepts of gender and sex, but at least I
                                                             indicate what
  am on mailing lists that target my diverse                 C.W. Mills calls
  interests! At the same time that the public seems          sociological
  to be increasingly using “gender” as proxy for
  “sex,” gender theorists are more clearly                   imagination...
  delineating the relationship between sex and
  gender. However, because gender and sex are
                                                           • being informed
  seemingly inexplicably connected in most aspects           about and being
  of social life, theorists have difficulty in retaining     reflexive in your
  these delineations throughout their work” (p.
  298).                                                      research is OK!
• Intellectuals have been creating, critiquing, and advancing
  concepts of gender for the past 30 years. Generally,
  gender is defined as the socially constructed correlate of
  sex. The concept of gender as socially constructed has
  been theorized extensively and illustrated in a variety of
  arenas from the playground to the boardroom (Fausto-
  Sterling 2000; Kanter 1977; Kessler 1990; Lorber 1994;
  Messner 2000; Thorne 1993; West and Zimmerman
  1987). However, many definitions positing gender as an
  ongoing accomplishment rely on sex as the “master
  status” or “coat rack” on which gender is socially
  constructed (Nicholson 1994). Although there is a general
  consensus that gender is socially constructed, theorists
  have too often relied on sex as its initiating point” (p.
   Note the reference to West and Zimmerman...this is how
    academics communicate with each other and beyond
“Typically, sex is assigned based on
  genital inspection at birth, but
  biological sex is a complex
  constellation of chromosomes,
  hormones, genitalia, and
  reproductive organs. The study
  of intersexed and sex-reassigned
  children illustrates that social
  notions of sex are employed
  when biological sex is ambiguous
  (Fausto-Sterling 2000; Kessler
“Because sex is an organizing
  principle of most societies,
  people are forced to be one or
  the other, even when “only a
  surgical shoehorn can put them
  there” (Fausto-Sterling 1993, 24).
  Given this, sex is both a physical
  attribute and socially
  constructed” (p. 298).
• The more the FTMs were
  recognized socially
  physically and behaviorally
                                Other findings:
                                  These transmen [why is this a
  as male, the more                  spelling error in MS PowerPoint?]
  comfortable they were              felt that being perceived a man
  with expressions of                was enlightening
  traditionally female            Informant, Joe: “I remember one
                                     time walking up the hill; it was
  behaviour, such as putting         like nine o’clock, and this woman
  on nail polish. This macro-        was walking in front of me, and
                                     she kept looking back, and I
  level indication meant a           thought, ‘What the hell is wrong
  reduction in the                   with that girl?’ And then I stopped
  hypervigilance at a micro-         in my tracks. When I looked at her
                                     face clearly under the light, she
  level over time:                   was afraid. So I crossed the
   – Informant, Pete “It was         street” (p. 307).
     very apparent how            BUT, there are more pressures once
                                     judged as male: pressure to
     masculine a woman I             conform to misogyny at work, for
     was…and now it’s like           example. This is compounded by
                                     homosexuality, effemininity, race
     I’ve turned into this           or ethnicity.
     flaming queen like 90
     percent of the time” (p.     What social facts are at play here?
“When sex is ambiguous or less
  convincing, there is increased reliance
  on highly gendered behavior; when sex
  is obvious, then there is considerably      • Who
  more freedom in behavior. For this            decides?
  reason, sex is not the initiating point for
  gender. Instead, sex, whether biological
  or constructed, is an integral aspect of
  gender” (p. 304).
“’Doing gender’ (West and Zimmerman 1987) in a way that
   validates identity relies on both internal and external
   factors. Being able to look like one feels is key to the
   contentment of many FTMs. More than interacting with
   the social world as a man, comfort in one’s body can be
   a chief motivator for FTMs, especially when seeking
   chest surgery” ( p. 306).
           End of Dozier article
                             • This article is an excellent
• Reliance on sex              example of a mini-honours
  categorization has           thesis:
  become the norm when          – literature review (showing
  exploring gender --- in         strengths and weaknesses of
  both commonsense and            existing theories)
  sociological approaches.      – Study
                                – Analysis/Findings (when
                                  applying the lit review to the
                                – Discussion/conclusion
                Next class
• Sexuality on campus
• Guest

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