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Constructing Sex

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About the document

Aubrey K.
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documents in English
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presentations
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2 pages
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  1. Introduction
  2. The article The Medical Construction of Gender
  3. The theory of John Money and deciding the sex of an infant
  4. Its supports a traditional view of sex and gender and the mainstream opinion
  5. Conclusion

The social construction of gender is evident in today's world: girls are given pink clothes, Barbies, and they are encouraged to express their emotions. Young boys on the other hand are told to play sports, and they are reprimanded when they cry or when they express interest in toys considered ?girlie?. While there may be biological differences between the sexes, at least some of the personality differences between the sexes are due to the way children are socialized. However, if you had asked me if a child's biological sex was constructed two weeks ago, I would have said no: sex is biological, and gender is constructed. However after reading ?The Medical Construction of Gender?, I realized that just as we narrowly construct gender, we also restrict acceptable manifestations of biological sex to two: male and female. Thus, our society limits what is normal by coding anything that does not fall into the socially constructed category of normal as abnormal or deviant.

[...] Constructing Sex The social construction of gender is evident in today's world: girls are given pink clothes, Barbies, and they are encouraged to express their emotions. Young boys on the other hand are told to play sports, and they are reprimanded when they cry or when they express interest in toys considered ?girlie?. While there may be biological differences between the sexes, at least some of the personality differences between the sexes are due to the way children are socialized. [...]


[...] Thus the sex of an intersexed child depends heavily on whether the infant's penis can perform normally: decision to raise the child with male pseudohermaphroditism as a male or female is dictated entirely by the size of the phallus'? (Kessler, 58). Therefore, our societal expectations of what a penis should look like and how it should perform shape the decisions of medical personnel when it comes to determining the sex of an intersexed infant. A baby with ambiguous genitalia deviates from what is considered and is immediately forced into a medically constructed state of ?normalcy?. [...]

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