I am currently writing an ethnography essay for my university course, design and society. To get a better understanding of the topic of gender stereotyping, I would like to talk to some real parents!
I am really hoping here to find personal anecdotes and opinions in order to get beneath the facts and figures. My main interests in the topic are:
1. nature or nurture? are gender stereotypes (such as blue for boys and pink for girls or action toys for boys and baby's and dolls for girls) something that is innate within us from birth or something that is pushed upon us by parents, media, the toy industry and society in general?
2. What are the long term affects of having a definite line between genders? Does this cause confusion for children who grow up feeling they don't 'fit' what is expected of their gender?
3. How do parents react to this? Do they embrace the stereotype or are they fighting the pre defined roles. Is it a problem at all??
1. It cannot be innate, as in Victorian (?) times, pink was for boys. Blue was a feminine colour, associated with the Virgin Mary.
2. Excessive pinkification is a fairly recent phenomenon, possibly pushed by manufacturers in an effort of double sales (by making some toys 'unacceptable' to 50% of children, in the hope parents will buy twice). I do not think we can see what effect the intensification of the divide will have.