What Is Feminity?
Femininity is an ethical category that combines the set of qualities that are expected from women, such as emotions, vulnerability, and fragility. All these features full men with a desire to protect and defend the women.
Study psychology of men and women, and how they differ from each other is directly related not only to the person as a species representative but to society as a whole.
- How much money should a woman earn?
- And how much money should a man earn?
- Who should take care of children?
- And who should move forward on the career ladder?
- How should household responsibilities be divided?
And other important questions that arise in our society. This shows the topicality of the mentioned problems, especially for those people who are concerned about them.
Issues, related to the characteristics of the individual's sex and psychological differences, are the most actively discussed in the community. The role of men and women in the public sphere today is undergoing significant changes.
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Nowadays this question excites the minds of many social psychologists who anticipate the reassessment of "gender" values. There are disputes and controversies among the scientists towards the different directions of gender psychology.
There are meaningful and logical differences in opinions, judgments, and actions provided by the "male" and "female" group on the social-psychological level. Whether these differences are largely due to fundamental biological ones between men and women, or they are more due to the culture of a society where they are.
Are these differences determined by views and, accordingly, ruled by laws and regulations?
In this research paper, I will attempt to answer these questions based on a detailed study of the experimental data, and put the emphasis on women and femininity.
Femininity and Conformity
Due to changes in the cultural, social, political, legal, moral, and ethical spheres, the modern highly dynamic understanding of the many social and cultural situations undergoes a substantial transformation, including the concept of femininity.
Numerous reforms largely affect women. The last ones had to take primary responsibility for establishing the families. In many cases, they refuse to work in an appropriate position due to their education or training.
It was rightly pointed out in one prominent winged phrase: "A woman has won the right to the biography". This is particularly evident in the last decade.
Now the axiom can be understood as the position that the differences in gender are not specified and are not fixed by nature, they are made by a human, changed and shaped through the culture in the socialization process, as a cultural and social construction. Anthropologists, ethnographers, historians, and sociologists examine the differences in the social roles that exist in different societies in terms of gender. They rightly argue that biological sex can not be the main explanation for the rigid social differentiation (J. Butler M. Mead, G. Ploss, P. Berger, T. Luckmann, and others).
The social model of women and/or men, femininity and/or masculinity is created (constructed) by a society that determines their position and role in it. Femininity and masculinity are not biological facts. They are the cultural-specific beliefs of the individual, which organize the social being in some way.
The femininity as a philosophical category can be defined from the household to the socio-symbolic and religious positions. During the social and mental evolution, it has been changed as a counterweight to the masculinity. It is reflected not only the scale of the social values but also the extent of its progress and democratization. Even the most primitive and prevailing notions of femininity reflect a complex set of ideas: not only about the purpose of women in society, not only about her rights and duties but also set the behavioral norms. These ideas develop the ritualistic and aesthetic forms that must be used by women in order to fit the social category (Halpern, 2000).
At the level of everyday consciousness, femininity is connected, first of all, with a woman as biological sex, physically weaker than men. In many cultures, women should perform the will of men. However, it could be seen, that it is a social construction the concepts of femininity and a woman are not identical, appealing to the broader context of this concept.
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Scientific and Theoretical Approach to the Problem of Femininity
According to Williams and Best, men, unlike women, are generally considered ambitious, rational, independent and unemotional, while women are gentle, sensual, emotional, and sociable (Williams & Best, 1986). These ideas about men and women are common in our culture. Humorist Dave Barry said that women want to be loved, listened to, wanted and respected (Taylor, 2008).
Changing the paradigm of women took about a decade, but it was, apparently, quite radical. Woman overtook a man in work and social status, becoming "the most advanced." Turning to history, you can find many statements of representatives of the "stronger sex" towards the "courageous femininity" (Dunphy, 2000).
Are the expressions of masculine femininity the law or a specialty of the time that affects the role-based self-expression? Definitely this question can not be answered. Many factors affect the shape of self-representation and self-realization of women. It can not be pointed out the certain properties of femininity that are important social construction. Designing of women is carried through various institutional channels: family, religion, nationality, ethnicity, politics, government, the arts, etc.
In a society, there is always the image of perfect women. The ideal of women is offered by the poets and artists, politicians and fashion designers. Movie and theater bring to the world the image of a woman, who in this time, in this society is the most preferred. In the creation of social and cultural construction of femininity, in each case, the literature era can play a significant role. Despite the fact, that in our literature throughout its development the names of women writers revealed, the overall of the femininity construction is built predominantly with male representation.
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Fiction, video and film, television, and other media, political processes, public opinion and collective relations – all these impact on the social construct of femininity.
The woman, who is aware of its uniqueness, the public does not share the prejudices and preconceived notions. She should be guided only by her solely reason, by her own personality. As the Mona Lisa, she should smile softly at the sight of the naive efforts of feminists who act with the shadow of masculine strength, try to sacrifice themselves for the sake of their own femininity! Like the rest of female representatives, real woman sometimes comes highly irrational, but, unlike the other women, never behave illogically. This femininity, which is always there, but eternity remains at a distance, is a strange, inexplicable and wondrous mystery!
How sad it is that in the pursuit of freedom, most of the women sacrifice the femininity and lightly exchange that mystery for the fashionable idea of ??equality.
If a woman wants to be free, this does not mean that she wants to be from her own femininity, but she wants to get rid of the popular perception that she is something worse than the man and the point view that to be a mystery means to fall prey to the fate.
Within the historical formations, it was changed the "nature" of women, shifted the character traits of the sexes. Processes of change in society and ideology contributed to the process of changing genders.
Top of the social history of gender put Karin Hausen in the program work "nature of sexual polarization is the reflection dissociation between work and family life" (Davis, 2003).
Acute ambiguous characters of male and female, as is proved by Hausen, was "invented" in the last third of the 18th century. It was made in order to justify objectively the repression the women from work to the sphere of family life. This was done with the help of the relevant arguments essentially feminine tendencies and ethical purpose of women.
"Female" and "male" start point to the opposite sides of the existence. The material body is only a manifestation of women's potential, and it is the manifestation it is called a "woman". Obviously, this means that she as a spiritual being is embodied in one pole of awareness of the physical, settled in the physical body of the woman. Moreover, the pole of awareness is not only what it is called the "feminine" because it also has the potential, having the nature of femininity.
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All this implies that the overall goal is to implement this potential into the development of awareness of what means to be a real woman. It could be said that to be a real woman means to develop fully the potential femininity in physical appearance. Obviously, without the proper interaction between the male and female principles of consciousness, in the end, this comes to disorder, similar to the one which prevails in the world today. The unknown is always a mystery and the mystery of a woman can not be resolved until the end. The unknown can be consistently turned into the known thanks to the cooperation between the male and female principles. Men are able to reach their full potential of masculine and women can fully reach their feminine potential only in this way.
Universal gender roles for men and women do not exist. Margaret Mead based on her observations in the expeditions. Despite the fact, that every culture to some extent determines the roles of women and men, the nature of which, there is presenting a consideration that particular sex may be revealed only as one aspect of the character of every person (Mahowald, 1996).
To summarize all the above said, it can be assumed that there was a revolution, which has played a very important role: the differentiation of the genders and the emergence of gender-class that is represented by the women. Also, there was a change of studies about women. After analyzing the history of the formation the women's concepts of the femininity, it could be said that it is a category was formed by the history, society, literature, also, through the significance of the femininity in the culture and a big jump from the matriarchy to the modern gender concept.
Ideology, politics, religion, the arts, particularly literature are the instruments that are actively involved in the formation of femininity.
Separation and distinction, theories, and research and not only this, during the whole history woman, had to endure, but she found the strength to overcome all men's theory. She still remains a mystery to the men and, at the same time, clarifies her existence. She adapts to all kinds of changes in the world, and thus she proves that she is a significant figure in our existence.