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Gender Roles: Past, Present and Future

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Ashley Bialek

Gender Roles: Past, Present and Future

As a child growing up, I can always remember watching every cartoon, film, or television show and wanting to be princess of girly character. The particular film that stands our most in my mind is the Disney film, The Little Mermaid. The film is about a young mermaid that has always been daddy's little girl, but wants to run away to have a life that she has never been able to. The you mermaid, Ariel, ends up running away to the human world, marries a prince, becomes a princess, and ends up saying goodbye to her dad. I think that Ariel portrayed the typical girl gender role. She sang and danced around and wanted to be a princess and do all and any "girly" type things that she could. I found this film to relate and impact the way I though about particular gender roles, between boys and girls because, it portrayed boys as masculine princes, who take care of girls and treat them like princesses. It portrays the girls as, girls that are close with their daddy's, and grow up to marry princes and become princesses.

Boys and girls toys for the most part I feel are segregated from day one. When baby boys are born they are bought trucks and dinosaurs and everything is blue. When baby girls are born it is the exact opposite, everything is pink, and the toys they are given consist of dolls and ballerinas. When you walk through a toy store the girls are drawn to the toys that are wrapped in pinks and purples and have frills and daisies. The boys on the other hand are drawn to the toys that are in blues and greens and feature goo and dirt. Typically the toys that I girl plays with encourage caring for babies, and cooking and cleaning. The toys that boys are given to play with are trucks and construction type vehicles and tools, which encourage very masculine type behaviors. Toys that I believe are geared towards both boys and girls are typically only toys that encourage learning, or one that motivate one to better themselves.

Times are forever changing and males are beginning to do things that they typically didn't and females are as well. As gender roles continue to change, in the future I think that more and more equality between males and females will be present. Growing up I was taught to express myself anyway I chose, whether it be to dress up and play with dolls, or ride bikes



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