Gender Inequality Essay

2112 words - 9 pages

“Father Knows Best”, a popular sitcom in the 1950s, was a program where the archetypal father’s wisdom was solomonic and his judgment was left unquestioned. A patriarchal social hierarchy was maintained in the idealized post-war family. The 1950s in the United States were the golden age of masculinity, as books like The Modern Woman: The Lost Sex, to decree motherhood as the duty and civic responsibility of women, became best sellers (Rhode, 1947). Luckily, the United States has unshackled themselves from the imposing views of the mid-20th century, now fully accepting female leaders and workers as contributors to the economy. Yet, there is still a struggle and the modern mindset remains ...view middle of the document...

The social and economic aspects of some countries encourage this gap. Absolute equality is yet to be defined, and the dictionary definition for it is, ‘the status of being equal in status, rights, and opportunities’. Ranking of gender equal countries is based off of this definition and the ability to meet certain benchmarks based on economic, political, education and health-based criteria (“Global Gender Gap”). For the purposes of this paper, the definition of equality is the integrated atmosphere that promotes participation from all fields of humanity, and regards people as individuals of talent and creativity, without reference to gender, religion, or race. It is obvious that the countries that score highest on social trust also rank highest on economic equality, namely, the Nordic countries, the Netherlands, and Canada. These countries have put a lot of effort in creating equality of opportunity, not least in regard to their policies for public education, health care, labor market opportunities, and gender equality. Nordic (the five Nordic countries are Iceland, Norway, Finland, Denmark, and Sweden) social policies have been proven successful, as they have ranked in the Top 10 on gender equality out of 136 countries for the past 10 years, and have been assigned the accolade of “paradise for women” (“The Nordic Region a Gender Equality Paradise”). Conversely, one of the most influential countries in the world, the United States, falls just below the top 20, providing great evidence for necessary change (“Global Gender Gap”). At the bottom, Middle Eastern and North African countries show dismal effort to change gender policies and cultural bias. So what is it that Nordic countries are doing right? What can the United States do to adapt to the cultural and social diversity that is being created and move away from unequal habits? What can be learnt from the persecution of and violence towards women in the Middle East and North Africa? How can the spectrum of gender inequality be shortened? Women make up 50% of the human capital, the collective skills and knowledge of individuals that can be used to create economic value, in the world (The World Bank). Global progress is needed in the human rights sector across the board. Looking at economic inequality, the lack of opportunities for women-based social policies and the cultural discrimination towards women in various countries, it becomes clear that gender inequality is still very much a problem in the world today. To effectively drive forward change through awareness, the problem of social bias of men at the expense of women needs to be reframed so there is an understanding that everybody is better off when gender equality exists in society and that both masculine and feminine traits and characteristics should be equally valued in all aspects of life.
The wide gamut of gender inequality has been created by historical stereotypes, customs, and social policies which have evolved in some areas and...

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