Â Â ARTICLES FOR ASSIGNMENT (READ IN ORDER) ONLY USE THESE ARTICLES!
- (Note that this article incorrectly defines trans — it is presented in an overly narrow way by tying it to some form of transition.)
- Describe changes over time in the extent to which childrenâ€™s toys are made and marketed in gender-typed ways. (2-4 sentences)
- Were you surprised by these historical patterns? Why/why not? Explain. (3-4 sentences)
- According to the readings, why does heightened gender-typed marketing among childrenâ€™s toys matter (i.e., what is the effect of this practice for childrenâ€™s development)? (1-2 paragraphs)
- What is an alternative way to organize childrenâ€™s toys (that is not gender-typed)? (2-3 sentences)
How changes in childrenâ€™s toys relate to larger social shifts:
- As you read, despite progress toward gender equality during the second half of the 20th century, messaging in childrenâ€™s toys and marketing was simultaneously increasingly gender-typed, presenting an interesting paradox. Some scholars suggest that one explanation for this trend is that as women gained social and political power (e.g., an increasing presence in the labor force, higher education, and the political realm), toys have come to embody an ideological backlash to this progress. That is, as the roles of men and women become more similar in larger society, there is a greater need to distinguish between masculinity and femininity within the culture, and to emphasize that the traditional aspects of gender roles have not been abandoned.
- What do you think about this explanation for the documented trends in gender-typing children’s toys? (You are presenting your subjective evaluation here.) (3-4 sentences)Â
- OPTIONAL: You are welcome to assert another possible explanation or counter-argument for this trend.Â
- In your opinion, what are the (a) merits AND (b) limitations of Alex Myersâ€™ argument presented in the Op-Ed regarding Mattelâ€™s â€œgender-neutralâ€ dolls? (1-2 paragraphs)
- Explain what you found most surprising, interesting, and/or important while completing this assignment. Â Be sure to specify what it was and why it captured your attention. (1-2 paragraphs)