Girlhoods Expectations and Implications

hThe expectations of the behavior of girls, and women’s are different than what is expected of men’s behavior. This unequal expectation creates a stigma for women that women who act like men are rude, demanding, or bossy. In the keywords essay “Girlhood” by Jacqueline Reid-Walsh the way literature is used to educate girls in how they should behave as women. Reid-Welsh quotes Vallone stating, “Books serve as fictive conduct manuals of girls, teaching normative values in terms of morality, behavior, and religious beliefs for white middle class girls.” From what is known about society’s expectations of women one can assume these behaviors fall under the category of being kind, quiet, pilot, and submissive. Upon Minnesota Senator, Amy Klobuchar, announcing her presidential candidacy reports of her being an difficult and demanding boss started to surface in the media. In a Vogue article entitled “Women Will Never Truly Be Equal Until They’re Allowed to Get Angry” https://www.vogue.com/article/women-equality-rage-politics by Michelle Ruiz the topic of women’s expectations and the reactions when these expectations are not met is explored. The article references a study that claims,“Girls are held to higher standards of self-control, self regulation, and politeness.” Klobuchar’s tough style of leading is seen as a quality to make her unfit for president where is Trump the current president previously had a T.V show revolving around his aggressive leadership style and this was not seen as to make him unfit to run a country. This is just one example of how men and women have different expectations of acceptable behavior when acting in roles of leadership.

In “The Journey Begins, a Kaya Story” by Janet Shaw Kaya is faced with similar with problems of expected roles of women when she asks Two Hawks to help her build a shelter but he refused stating that it was women’s work. Two Hawks behavior angers Kaya as her womens work was what was needed to be done as to provide protection for them as they tried to find their way home, but was still seen as below something for a boy to be doing. The expectations of girls, and their behaviors put them at a disadvantage as when they act outside of the norm it is often criticized and women are seen in a negative light even if it is normal behavior for a man to exhibit in the same position. This issue of expectations leads to inequality in treatment in professional settings as well as inequality in the respect received from peers.

Leave a Reply