Gender Norms, Values, Identities, and Roles: Mohave vs. Western Society
There most likely is no American aged above ten who does not know 'Pat', the androgynous fictional character on Saturday Night Live, whose audience could not distinguish as either male or female. There is no doubt that people in today's society would not question a person's gender or sex unless it deviates from that which is considered 'the norm'. The norm, in our society, is that a person has to clearly fit into either of two sex groups; male or female, which are binary opposites of each other. Categorizations such as transsexuals are a relatively new (modern) constructs. Many non-western cultures, however, do not apply this kind of binary thinking; they recognize that more categories exist. To this end, most native cultures have more than two institutionalized gender/sex categories. This text explores one key anthropological example -- the Berdache, also referred to as 'the two-spirit people' in traditional American tribes. What stands out in the end is that the strict gender/sex schema adopted by western societies only gives rise to ambiguities that cause unnecessary harm to intersex individuals who cannot be classified as either female or male.
The Two Spirit Gender Category
This is a third gender category among the traditional American tribes. The Europeans could not comprehend the behavior and features of these individuals because, to them, one could strictly be either male or female, and not both. Since intersex individuals somehow blurred these lines, they were branded 'two spirit' people (Eskridge Jr., 1993). Of fundamental importance is that this is a gender rather than a sex category, given that it is based on culture and not genital appearance (Eskridge Jr., 1993). These individuals are gender variants; they neither take on typical gender roles nor cross fully to the opposite...
A male (female) gender variant is a male (female) who displays a feminine (masculine) character in their hairstyle, dressing, and interests (Martin, 2013).
The Roles, Norms, and Values of the 'Two Spirits' within the Mohave Community
The Mohave tribe is found in the south west desert, along the California/Nevada border (Martin, 2013). The Mohave culture has two gender-variant roles in addition to the usual male and female roles. Hwame is the name given to a female gender variant, whereas the male one is referred to as Alyha (Nanda, 1999). The Alyha and Hwame would start acting strange around the time when puberty would normally occur. Essentially, the Alyha would begin avoiding masculine duties and preferring to play with dolls or engage in domestic chores, whereas the Hwame would abandon these for more masculine activities such as shooting bows and arrows (Nanda, 1999). If this continued long enough, the child's family would prepare for a transvestite ceremony, in which the child's initiation and inclination would be announced to the community. Alyhas got married to males, and at times made better wives than females (Nanda, 1999).
Alyha and Hwame were accepted by the community; rarely were they teased or ridiculed by other people. Everyone seemed to understand that they, like any other person, had no control over their inclination, and that it was something they could neither resist nor help (Nanda, 1999).
As a matter of fact, they were highly respected because they were believed to possess spiritual power and an incomprehensible understanding of both sexes
Alyha and Hwame clearly demonstrate two additional gender roles separate and distinct from the usual male and female (Nanda, 1999). The community recognized them as different from men and women, although they imitated their typical roles. Alyha had relations with men, and Hwame with women, but the community did not view them as homosexuals like westerners would (Nanda, 1999).
In the Mohave, and other cultures that have the two spirit gender category, gender and sex are distinct and separable. Sex is determined by the appearance of genitals; whereas gender is determined by the roles an individual is inclined to perform (Nanda, 1999).
Gender and Sex in the Western society
Westerners hold that both sex and gender are social constructs determined by society, such that an individual dresses and chooses a hairstyle on the basis of what the society expects of their sex (Nanda, 1999). To this end, gender and sex are, from a western viewpoint, inseparable (Nanda, 1999). When a nurse in the delivery…
Although the boy's loudness resulted in a sanction from his father there were none forthcoming from customers around them. This suggests that a certain level of tolerance and flexibility is granted to children when regarding social norms -- they are less familiar with them. Also, the boy was under the impression that it was feasible for him to get onto the roof of the library, while the father recognized
Norms of Behavior Behavioral theorists have long recognized the influence of norms upon behavior, and for decades at least, practitioners have tried to use the media, group opinion leaders, and small-group or other interactive activities in sexuality and HIV education classes to change norms and to thereby change behavior. In addition, for a variety of reasons, people have tried to increase connectedness between youth and their families, schools and faith communities.
The second time, I sat down next to a woman who was sitting alone. The woman turned and looked directly at me and furrowed her brow just a bit as she was turning away. I could hear her sigh as she shifted over dramatically as if to avoid being too close. She was reading a book and listening to headphones. Although she glared at me at first, she refused to
Norms Psychological Observations and Norms: Comparison in terms of Multicultural and Traditional Research Methodology In the field of psychology, research methods vary significantly based on the sources of information that are focused on, how that information is samples, and the types of instruments that are used in data collection. Generally, methods vary in terms of whether they collect qualitative, quantitative data, or both. This research methodology further contains both multicultural and
norms and values surrounding marriage and family. In the fifties, life in the United States was good. Posterity was evident throughout most levels of society and there was little reason to question or even consider the importance of marriage and family. The dawning of the sixties, however, beginning with the Cuban missile crisis, the upheaval over Civil Rights, and the assassination of President Kennedy brought discontent and soul searching
For example, at the end of a history class' unit on the Revolutionary War, a summative test would asses how much the student had retained about this critical period in the nation's history. It would measure the student's effort and the teacher's relative success in imparting knowledge to the student. In contrast, a formative assessment like a quiz measures what is currently being taught in class. It measures the student's