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Discuss the Bio-Social Approach to Gender Development (8+16 Essay

  • Submitted by: rhiashortcake
  • on April 17, 2015
  • Category: Psychology
  • Length: 771 words

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Below is an essay on "Discuss the Bio-Social Approach to Gender Development (8+16" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Doctor Money believed that social factors override biological factors in gender identity. When you are born you are identified by your gender (genitalia), from this children are exposed to different labels, e.g. boys being associated with the colour blue and girls being associated with the colour pink and different treatments, e.g. rewarding appropriate behaviour (girls playing with dolls) and punishing inappropriate behaviour (girls playing with cars). Money predicted that if you are mislabelled at birth and subjected to inappropriate labels and treatment before the age of three, then the infant would then acquire the identity of the gender that they were labelled.
Support comes from the case study of David Reimer who was born a boy but after circumcision went wrong he was raised as a girl until his early teens. Doctor Money reported that David assumed the role of Brenda and adopted a female gender identity. However, the reality is that David never truly assumed the female identity, wanting to play with boy’s toys and being referred to as ‘cave man’ at school due to masculine tendencies. As soon as he found out he was a boy he instantly acquired that gender and went on to live as a boy at the age of 14, implying that biology is the overwhelming factor. However, as this was a case study it makes it hard to generalise to the rest of the population. This can also be criticised as being highly unethical, this is because the trauma this situation caused led David and his brother to both commit suicide having a damaging effect on the family’s life. Also, Doctor Money then went on to take advantage of the mother and published invalid results on the case and did further research on 6 others who also ended up committing suicide.
This approach can be criticised by Reiner and Gearhart for failing to take into account individual differences. They studied 16 genetic males who were born with no penis, two were raised as males and remained as males and the remaining 14 were...

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