Sociology of Gender – Toys and Gender Stereotypes

SOC 363: Sociology of Gender
Exercise #1: Toys and Gender Stereotypes Due on D2L by Tuesday, March 9, 2021
Purpose: Write a reflective essay in which you examine gender stereotypes, gender schemas,
and gender socialization by reflecting on toys and their marketing.
Preparation: You will need to read through Chapters 1-4 of our textbook, the short article by
Elizabeth Sweet (“Toys are more divided…”) and the article by Emily Kane (“No way my
boys…”), as well watch the video clips posted on D2L, including the TED talk by Sweet. Other
materials posted in the content modules on D2L will be useful to you too.
Questions for reflection: How are toys a reflection of the social construction of gender in US
society? To what extent does the marketing of toys and the encouragement/discouragement of
their use shape the gender identities and development of children? Based on your experiences,
how easy/difficult is it to access/locate toys that are not marked in some gendered way? To
what extent do you see gender stereotyped toys as a problem, and why? To what extent do you
think gender stereotyping could change, and how?
– Correctly use the language and terms of Gender Sociology (from D2L content, lecture, &
readings) in your discussion.
– You must cite and discuss readings from the course (e.g., assigned readings—from D2L
learning modules), but do not use material outside our course materials.
– Minimum length: 2 full pages (800 words) of narrative, typed, double-spaced, 12-point font,
maximum 1-inch margins.
– Write your essay with complete and grammatical sentences in organized paragraphs. Read
and edit your paper before submitting it!
– Follow rules of citation and references: provide page numbers (or paragraph locations) for
direct quotation or paraphrasing; and provide complete reference at the end of your essay (not
included in minimum length).