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September 27, 2007

What I learned

When we spoke in class about binary thinking, it really opened my eyes to how often that occurs. It's easy to come up with binary thought processes about things like gender, but I just never sat down and thought about how far it extends. It was definitely an interesting class hour.

What I've Learned

The last two weeks has enlightened me to some very intetesting points involving the discrimination against different races as well as people whose sexual preference deviates from the social norm. Many of the articles we read take place a couple decades ago, yet the same issues remain unsolved today. In Peggy McIntosh's White Privilege I realized some of the privileges I recieve from being a white woman. You really have to place yourself in other people's shoes to understand how the world percieves you. I also learned about the severe prosecution of homosexuals through the 20th and 21st century. I had no idea how extensive the raids and arrests were. Interestingly enough movements like the civil rights movement make it into history books, while movements involving sexuality differences tend to be left out. I think one of my favorite quotes applies here: "Those who don't remember their past are doomed to repeat it." With each new generation not learning about the feminists and GLBT movements the discrimination will continue.
>Carolyn

What I've Learned

The last two weeks has enlightened me to some very intetesting points involving the discrimination against different races as well as people whose sexual preference deviates from the social norm. Many of the articles we read take place a couple decades ago, yet the same issues remain unsolved today. In Peggy McIntosh's White Privilege I realized some of the privileges I recieve from being a white woman. You really have to place yourself in other people's shoes to understand how the world percieves you. I also learned about the severe prosecution of homosexuals through the 20th and 21st century. I had no idea how extensive the raids and arrests were. Interestingly enough movements like the civil rights movement make it into history books, while movements involving sexuality differences tend to be left out. I think one of my favorite quotes applies here: "Those who don't remember their past are doomed to repeat it." With each new generation not learning about the feminists and GLBT movements the discrimination will continue.
>Carolyn

September 26, 2007

What I Learned

During the past discussion in my group, I was exposed to a lot of new information about the difference between sex and gender. One fact that stands out very interestingly is that a person can have the biological body of a female, but the mindset of a man. We classify a lot of people by their appearances, instead of taking a moment to get to know their personality.

What I've Learned

So far in the class I have learned about the different sexual categories and gender roles people within society portray. I have learned to differenciate between sex, gender, and sexuality. Also, the idea of gender norms and how they affect people with varying sexualities have been explained. Race, gender and their ties when related to privelage have been another prominent theme thus far.

What I Learned

In the past few weeks I've learned about problems surrounded by class/sexuality,the inherent of black women, and white privilege how whites are generally viewed as superior in all categories whether its getting pulled over or jobs

What I've Learned

This past weeks discussion was interesting to be as we dipicted the difference between gener, sex, and sexuality. I found it interesting that someone can choose their sexuality. I never looked at it this way but once thnking about it the whole idea is truley chocie.

sex talk

Sex has become complicated, there are so many types of people, groups, and terms that has formed 'cause times are changing. It's weird seeing homosexuality grouped in the category with prostitution, because the only thing I see that's similar between the two is the unfair treatment they receive from laws and that both are related to sex, but what else is there? I like how the quotes from Michel Foucault has a hint of poetic style to them (ex. part 4).

September 25, 2007

Discussion Questions

1. Why is it important to think about sex separately from gender? Why do we need separate movements?
2. Do people in the outer limits of the sex hierarchy want to be in the "charmed circle?" Why or why not?
3. Is it just to limit the rights of consenting adults when it comes to sex?
4. Why is there so much stigma surrounding sex in American society?

What I learned

In week 3 discussion I learned that in binary thinking there is no room for gray areas-it is simply black or white; this or that. For example: gay or straight; male or female. these leave no room for options like bisexuality or transgender people.

What I learned 9/19

In discussion this week I learned that

gender is a socially constructed concept. I also learned that white privilege is the opposite end of the spectrum when it comes to racism. Most white people don't realize that racism does affect them but this is because it affects them in a positive manor. This idea coinsides with male dominance and patriarchy. These concepts often lead to binary thinking of the genders races.

September 24, 2007

What I've Learned

So far in the class I have learned about the different sexual categories and gender roles people within society portray. I have learned to differenciate between sex, gender, and sexuality. Also, the idea of gender norms and how they affect people with varying sexualities have been explained. Race, gender and their ties when related to privelage have been another prominent theme thus far.

What I've Learned

So far in the class I have learned about the different sexual categories and gender roles people within society portray. I have learned to differenciate between sex, gender, and sexuality. Also, the idea of gender norms and how they affect people with varying sexualities have been explained. Race, gender and their ties when related to privelage have been another prominent theme thus far.

September 23, 2007

What I learned on 9/19/2007

I learned that binary thinking and privilege for certain groups is holding our society back. These issues prevent us as people from growing together. Both concepts limit and deny certain people access to living happy lives.

What I learned...

I learned that white privilege coincides with many other types of privilege like male privilege and heterosexual privilege. I also learned that ignoring these other types of privilege may lead to binary thinking.

What I learned on Wednesday

I learned that in Ancient China, men used to wear what we would consider dresses. These gowns, however, were typical attire for males at the time. It is interesting to see how something like clothing can be prescribed a gender by a culture, and also how these gender readings can change over time.

What I Learned on Wednesday 9/19/2007

The two things I learned in discussion this week are (one) Binary thinking is oppositional thinking. (Two) I also acknowledged that white privilege is a much communicated topic here at the University of Minnesota but nothing other than acknowledgment is done about the situation.

September 21, 2007

What I Learned

One thing that I learned in discussion today is that sex and gender are not necessarily the same thing, and that gender is more of a social assignment or cultural construction.

Two important points in "A Black Feminist Statement"

1) Oprressions on black women are "manifold" (racism, sexism, heterosexism, classism, and so on) and "simutaneous".
2) Black feminist politics is antiracist and antisexist but not separatist.

September 20, 2007

What I learned...

I wasn't aware that you could have the sex of a male but have the gender of a female. My group discussed a situation in which a little boy was raised as a girl...it was a perfect example.

September 19, 2007

What I learned

I learned that binary thinking is a way of organizing the world in terms of dichotomies, and that doing so often leads to hierarchical thinking - with one side being inherently superior or inferior to the other.

Rachelle :-)

What I learned from discussion week 3

I learned that gender norms vary by culture and by era (men used to be able to wear dress-like clothes).

Discussion week 3

I learned today that just because a person is born a male does not mean that person will grow up and consider themselves a man. Part of our culture allows for people to decide what gender they feel most comfortable naming themselves.

September 17, 2007

Ranges of Medically Acceptable Infant Clitoral and Penile Lengths

In Suzanne Kessler's research of the intersexed, she finds that physicians use size to determine sex assignment of intersexed infants. Clitorises with the length of 0.2-0.9cm and penises with the length of 2.5-4.5cm are considered medically acceptable. Genitals within the range of 0.9-2.5 are considered unacceptable. Boys with penises smaller than 2.5 cm may be reassigned as girls.

--from The Five Sexes, Revisited

Moving Beyond Five Sexes

A few years later, in response to Suzanne J. Kessler's critique of the "five sexes" Anne Fausto-Sterling wrote another essay, titled "The Five Sexes, Revisited".

Kessler argues:

The limitation with Fausto-Sterling's proposal is that...[it] still gives genitals...primary signifying status and ignores the fact that in the everyday world gender attributions are made without access to genital inspection....What has primacy in everyday life is the gender that is performed, regardless of the flesh's configuration under the clothes. (13)

Fausto-Sterling responds:

"I now agree with Kessler's assessment. It would be better for intersexuals and their supporters to turn everyone's focus away from genitals. Instead, as she suggests, one should acknowledge that people come in an even wider assortment of sexual identities and characteristics than mere genitals can distinguish." (13)

The Five Sexes

In 1993, Anne Fausto-Sterling wrote an essay for The Sciences, titled "The Five Sexes". In this essay, she argues that the two-sex system is not adequate to show the full spectrum of human sexualities. Instead, she suggests a five-sex system: males, females, "herms" , "merms", and "ferms".

According to Anne Fausto-Sterling, "herms" are named after hermaphrodites, people who are born with both a testis and an ovary, "merms" are male pseudo-hermaphrodites who are born with testes and some aspect of female genitalia, and "ferms" are female pseudo-hermaphrodites who are born with ovaries combined with some aspect of male genitalia.

September 14, 2007

Discussion Questions for Week 3

Question Set 1
Do you have any questions about terms, ideas in the articles we have read so far?
Please post them under the subcategory, "Questions," to Week 3.

Question Set 2
How would you define gender?
How would you describe yourself in terms of gender?
Where do you see gender in our everyday life?
What are the most often seen gender categories on official documents?
What are the other options of gender categories which you have known of?

Question Set 3
What is binary thinking? Can you give some examples which you often see in your everyday life? (for example, binary thinking in terms of gender, race, class, and sexuality)?
How can we question those binaries?

Question Set 4
How to understand white privilege?
How to understand white privilege in terms of gender?
What can we do to unpack it in our everyday life?

September 13, 2007

test blog

test blog

September 10, 2007

Practice

I'm Andrea and this is my practice blog.

That's all for now. :)

September 9, 2007

Self Portrait

Please tell us about yourself.

Portrait 1
Why did you choose this course? Where do you come from? What do you think your gender is? Your race? Your sexuality? Do you have any skin-stories?

What is your favorite pastime? What is your plan for the future? One thing about you which other people do not know of......

Portrait 2
Let's suppose you are going to a cultural exchange program in China to share ideas of gender, sexuality, race, class. You meet with your paired friend, Xiumei, who was born in China, grew up in China, has never heard of the United States (That's impossible, but let's suppose. :-) ) How would you introduce yourself to her in terms of gender, sexuality, race, and class and make yourself understood by her?

Welcome

Welcome to the class of Gender, Power, and Everyday Life, a place for self discovery, friends-making, critical thinking, and social activism.