Research on women’s involvement in different spheres of society, such as family relations, politics, and economic domains, has been widely encountered. Traditionally, females were confined to house chores, and it restricted them from growing individually and showcasing their potential in society. Recently, women have been empowered and started showing their skills and talents in various domains. Today, females have attained the highest educational achievements, vied for electoral seats, participated in economic-oriented activities, and proven their previously ignored talents. The contribution of women to various sectors of society shows how gender issues have been battled, and the world is aiming for an equal representation across genders. The issue of gender roles in society has changed significantly with the gap reducing as more women get involved in the opportunities they were previously denied.
The levels of gender equality in society influence every aspect of the daily lives of women and men. It permeates into various social levels and influences how gender segregation occurs in private and public organizations. The formal volunteering of women in distinct sectors is different from men. Gender equality at the national level may cause differences in the volunteering trends between men and women. Such prospective guides explore the factors that shape sociopolitical activities and how they operate diversely across gender. While gender discrimination and segregation are still evident in specific social domains, findings from various researches show how women participate in society when opportunities for inclusion and participation expand.
Women across the world show their ability to shape outcomes in society. They form the culture, especially the moral values of the society. Their ability to influence the world has helped them to exhibit ethics on the influences and power over the political issues. The political impact has affected society, but the leaders fail to change the gendered power structure. They have also been unable to transform the traditional power structure that people practiced for many generations. Wemlinger and Meika note that “traditional gender roles in many countries mediate the types of organizations that women volunteer at or shape feelings about where women believe they should volunteer” (855). The continued existence of the gender roles within society calls for the analysis of the effects of the volunteering behaviors and how the changing roles affect the types of organizations people prefer to choose.
The patterns of fertility and parenthood are issues in society that gained more interest in gender relations. Researchers argue that when a gender relation moves from the male context, childlessness increases, and fertility issues decline. According to Hudde, “more gender equality meant less fertility. After a certain threshold is surpassed, the gender equity–fertility nexus changes its direction: more gender equality or gender equity means less childlessness and more fertility” (745). Hudde mentions researchers who provide insightful information on the formulation of the theoretical frameworks that link the changing roles of gender to the changing demographic behaviors. Thus, the limited knowledge about this fact allows minimal room to seek evidence.
The theories which explore the evolution of the U-shaped model in the contexts of fertility depend on the spread of the gender-symmetric standards and attitudes. The U-shaped theories argue that society moves from a situation where social agreements on gender relations were high to a world where gender equality is valued. Such situations tend to be categorized as powerful gender obligations supported with extended periods of uncertainty as well as normative confusion towards the case with new and superior gender roles. Such new phenomena are centered on more gender-symmetric norms and dual-career family models.
The normative change in gender roles tends to take ideal-typical paths. It can be the society experiencing slow shifts or transition from one model to another, causing ruptures. Some of the members of society adopt the new models while others remain with the old ones. For instance, Ansgar notes, “in the 1960s, most members of the society believed that the male breadwinner and female homemaker model is the right way to go. Gradual change begins, and people tend to favor more and more female employment and male involvement in the home” (747). Moreover, the author identifies that twenty years later, the situation has changed and many women today work part-time while attending to their other house chores. Smethers notes that “this is why we need to embed a culture of flexibility that enables employees to flex their hours and/or their location”. A few years later, the same society shares the model where both men and women take roles and divide the house bills.
The issue of gender roles has earned interest globally and its impacts on society are explored extensively. Shisong brings the contexts of gender roles and how the concept has evolved (4). Gender inequality has earned a major interest in the social system transitions and structural change. It is associated with the fertility decline and the developments in education. A new generation of women achieves increasing levels of education and implies a trend towards educational gender equalization. The trend indicates that there are substantial improvements in the social and economic statuses of women. It might also show a narrowing gap between men and women. However, one may find it interesting to learn that the gender income gap is persistent and keeps increasing.
The classical narrative approach is employed to stress the basic explanations for human capital and gender disparity. Shisong implies that “gender inequality is deeply rooted in traditional cultural norms” (3). These insights are supported by research findings, which indicate that gender role attitudes from the plowing agricultural system are persistent for over a long time. they have transformed the situation and promoted equality in the contemporary employment sector. These findings indicate that the traditional gender roles were coupled with undoubted continuity and kept affecting the development of the social setting.
The high influence of male domination is an issue to explore to note the evolution of inequality. Gender discourse has significantly changed following the market reformation and transition in the different institutions. The reforms promote the emergence of a new phenomenon to explore, to determine whether the gender roles still affect the income disparity and allow the opportunity to elaborate the gender stratification theory. However, the existing works of gender income stratification have not analyzed the theoretical logic. The levels with which the gender roles affect the income gap between males and females is an issue vaguely determined through research. Shisong notes that “gender role attitudes have a significantly negative impact on income and especially on women’s incomes” (4). Further research identified that in America, high school students believe that gender role attitudes reduce the working hours for women. They also claim that in terms of paid jobs, but men and their income or working hours are not affected.
The concept of allocation of roles for men and women in the contexts of the division of labor and other work is a form of gender role attitude. Spante identified that the traditional gender roles have declined and egalitarianism has increased (184). Evidence points to the fact that the shifts to the industrial and influential postindustrial society lead to an egalitarian gender role. As a result, the past studies are concerned with gender roles and attitudes, and they depend on the measures provided in previous literature and surveys. The article implies that people need to consider how the change is measured. The transition in society can be measured only when the tool to assess is not altered over time. The constant evaluation may, however, produce flexible measurement, which makes it critical to change the value (Walter 830). In this case, the first principle refers to the fact that even the issue can result in fluctuation in the assessment. Thus, the change in attitude may be attributed to the change in measures.
The second law implies the chances that the functional equivalence of the evaluation is not admitted due to the reforms in their associated meanings. Social developments can cause a difference in the results of the evaluation. As a consequence, people need to violate the first principle and adjust the measures to read the same concepts repeatedly. One development that influenced the decline in the make bread-winner model is the education of women. Gender has invested more in education than the trends in the past. The same is linked to the increase of women in the labor force. Traditionally, limited academic knowledge prevented them from acquiring positions in the employment sector, where academic certificates were required (Spante 184). They can today approach a recruitment team and present academic qualifications higher than most men in contemporary society.
The change in women’s academic status has also influenced a change in their working hours and hourly wages. The qualifications provide them with the ability to seek the top positions in the corporate sector. Women have also joined politics and proven to have more capabilities than most male politicians. The states with women politicians have recorded positive impacts and progress and are likely to elect more women than males in their electoral seats. Such changes explain how women have today been empowered and influenced the decline in the gender equality gaps across the world.
To conclude, gender equality at the national level leads to changes in sociopolitical activities and their operation across gender. Society moves from a situation where social agreements depend on gender relations. The trend towards equalization in education indicates that there are substantial improvements in the social and economic statuses of women. Moreover, it shows a narrowing gap between men and women. Past studies identified that the traditional gender roles have declined and egalitarianism has increased. Women’s contribution to various sectors of society is an indicator that gender issues have been battled and the world is attempting to achieve equal representation across genders. Therefore, the world today appreciates that women can equally contribute to the different aspects of society development, as well as men.
Hudde, Ansgar. “Societal Agreement on Gender Role Attitudes and Childlessness in 38 Countries.” European Journal of Population, vol. 34, no. 5, 2018, pp. 745-767.
Shisong, Qing. “Gender Role Attitudes and Male-Female Income Differences in China.” The Journal of Chinese Sociology, vol. 7, no. 1, 2020. pp. 1-23.
Spante, Maria. “Digital Creativity: Learning by Story Driven Digital Production.” The International Journal of Information and Learning Technology, vol. 36, no. 3, 2019, pp. 182-191.
Smethers, Sam. “We’re at A Gender Equality Crossroads: Which Path Will the Government Take?” The Guardian, 2020.
Walter, Jessica, G. “The Adequacy of Measures of Gender Roles Attitudes: A Review of Current Measures in Omnibus Surveys.” Quality and Quantity, vol. 52, no. 2, 2018, pp. 829-848.
Wemlinger, Elizabeth, and Meika R. Berlan. “Does Gender Equality Influence Volunteerism? A Cross-National Analysis of Women’s Volunteering Habits and Gender Equality.” Voluntas, vol. 27, no. 2, 2016, pp. 853-873.