gender gender versus sex children ’ H u m a n i t i e s

gender gender versus sex children ’ H u m a n i t i e s


For this paper you will write a formal academic essay in which you select a primary source as a starting point (intellectual context) and respond to that source with an argument of your own. You will establish your own project, carve out your own niche, and approach the discussion from any angle that interests you most. To do so, carry out small, focused research task to find information that helps clarify, illustrate, extend, complicate, or qualify your primary text/topic (the primary text will in some way establish a starting point for your topic). The goal is to synthesize what your sources say so you understand the topic better: you must identify connections among your sources and blend them into a coherent whole that articulates ideas of your own, as opposed to simply reporting what other authors have said. In the process, you will contribute to the larger conversation, put in your oar, and take your own stand on the topic.


2.5-6 Pages, not including the works cited page.

3.At least one article from those assigned in class.

4.At least three sources are required, though more will help you to develop your conversation.

5.MLA format.

Evaluation Criteria: Successful papers will

  1. Signal the topic, and give some indication of how the paper will proceed (project statement).
  2. Smoothly integrate information and evidence from at least two sources to help support your argument.
  3. Analyze HOW and WHY these connections illustrate, clarify, extend, or complicate claims found in your primary text, and use this analysis to come to a conclusion of your own. In making your argument, you will use claims or synthesize claims from the sources that you find to help make your argument, and in the process of making your argument, provide full explanation of ideas.
  4. Address an academic audience unfamiliar with your topic.
  5. Use an effective structure that carefully guides the reader from one idea to the next. Pay particular attention to body paragraphs, making sure you have strong transitions/metadiscourse that connections the larger pieces of your paper, topic sentences that control your paragraphs (and ideas), and transitions/metadiscourse that connect individual paragraphs as needed.
  6. Make sure that you answer the “so what, who cares, why does it matter” question: from everything you have read, what is the significance of the topic you’re researching? Who cares, and why does it matter?
  7. Be thoroughly edited so that sentences are readable and appropriate for an academic paper, including meticulous attention to grammar as well as MLA formatting & citation.
  8. Writing mechanics:
    1. Paragraphs focus on single ideas.
    2. Transitions between paragraphs are smooth.
    3. Quotations and references from text are properly integrated and accounted for. You can consult and use the templates in “Synthesis Describing Relationships” and “The Art of Quoting” when composing your sentences.
    4. Grammar, spelling, and punctuation are correct

Here is a list of gender topics for this assignment. You can choose from this list or find another topic in the class readings that is not listed here. Regardless, your topic must come from the assigned readings. One useful way to come up with a thesis is to ask yourself an opinionated critical question about one of these topics. Your answer to this question will then be your thesis. For example, a question could be “Who makes better homemakers, men or women?” The answer could be “Men make better homemakers than women because they are strong enough to carry multiple items at once, they are handy around the house, and they are effective disciplinarians.” (Do not use this thesis as your own, and this thesis represents a 5 paragraph essay, an essay that is too simple for this level class.).

Gender as a social construction

Changing one’s gender

Gender versus sex

Children’s understanding of gender

Adults’ understanding of gender




Body postures, speech patterns, and gestures

Power imbalance

How to be a “real man” (the Guy Code)

Males’ and boys’ influences (father, older siblings, coaches…)

Consequences of a male acting feminine

Insults used to put down a feminine male


Necessity to prove heterosexuality

The Boy Code (learning the Guy Code at an early age)

Necessity of males to avoid showing emotion (stoicism)

Violence as only acceptable form of emotional expression

Consequences of males suppressing emotions

Sexism in rap music

African American pain/need for dominance over women

Changing gender norms and behaviors

Women as alphas

Gender roles and sexuality

Body image and Advertising

Violence in Advertising

Advertising and Dehumanization

Advertising and sexual aggression

Sex and Advertising

Objectification of male or female body

Male physical violence against women

Emotional violence against men

Rhetorical violence/aggression in language regarding gender roles

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