In which: a cis-hetero-white-male tells me a thing about the innate nature of gender
As a graduate student nearing completion of both a master’s of sociology degree, as well as a graduate certificate in women’s and gender studies, I was unprepared for this exchange in my history course on Women in America to 1890.
"Where do we get gender?" the professor inquires. I look around at my 12 other classmates, who are a mixture of graduate and undergraduate students…when no one responds I offer, "Gender arises from a hierarchical social discourse constructed via all the major institutions of society—family, church, school, polity—and is inculcated through gender socialization. It’s socially constructed and regulated by a set of privileged norms."
Dude-Bro: ”But it’s innate…I mean, my wife was designed to hear the pitch of our son cry; I literally cannot hear him. You’re telling me that’s not from biology?”
Me: ”You’re not talking about gender.”
Dude-Bro: ”Yeah, well—you push out a baby, then maybe you’ll understand.”
P.S. Already a mother, and I ain’t got time to teach you nothing, son.