Are men and women truly opposing forces to one another? Have inequalities forced us farther away from closing the gap between men and women? Let's examine how history has cultivated our opinions. First, in the past, the definitions of sex and gender seemed to be the same. They were noted to be male equal to "masculinity" and female equal to "femininity". But the truth is "sex is typically used to refer to the biological markers of maleness or femaleness" (Newman, p. 53). This is indicative of our chromosomal placement XY or XX respectively, sex glands, and physical characteristics. "Gender designates the psychological, social, and cultural aspects of masculinity and femininity." "People are not born with gender; they cultivate it over time as they learn the cultural expectations associated with being a boy or girl, a man or a woman" (Newman, p.53). Traditionally men's role has been the 'bread winner' and the female's role has been 'homemaker'. Over the centuries these gendered characteristics have changed. Today thanks to women's movements women are in the same 'roles' as men, and they are slowly making their way to the top. Women make up 46.7% of the labor force in 2011, and in 2010 women were 31.5% of all lawyers (Statistical Overview of Women in the Workplace, 2011). Also please see slides 14-22. Next look at how the institutional, interpersonal, and internal contexts shape us and our gendered beliefs. "Institution is the set of rules and relationships that govern the social activities in which we participate to meet our basic needs" (Ore, p. 8). Our families, educational systems, and media contribute much to how a male or female is to act. Fathers or coaches will sometimes say "don't be a sissy! You throw like a girl!" The media "portrays a dual stereotype. On one hand, we see images of the successful woman of the 21st century: the perfect wife and mother, the triumphant career woman. At the same time we see the seductive sex object displayed in beer commercials, magazine advertisements, and soap operas." (Newman, p. 91). Interpersonal context is the "categorization of difference in our daily interaction with others" (Ore, p. 9). Examples include: Boys calling other boys "sissy" for playing with dolls and girls not wanting to be around girls for playing football. This can cause a lot of internalization to the fact that their "group" does not want them around. Internal context the context in which we "internalize the values and beliefs established in institutional and interpersonal contexts" (Ore, p. 9). Because we see "men acting as men" and "women as acting as women" we think that they should be the stereotypical male bread-winner, women as the childcare provider, heterosexual, with children, and a house with a white picket fence. The truth is that in our current society: men dress like women, men are gay, women are lesbians, women are breadwinners, men are childcare providers, and the list goes on. Along with the United States women in both South Africa and Brazil have seen changes in status as well. For South African women wages were lower for women than for men as they did the same jobs, and women also had fewer benefits. A movement called the African National Congress Women's League (ANCWL, the same type of movement as the Feminists in the US) formed in 1943 and placed marches for women's rights but failed. This league reformed in 1990 and made gains to construct strong policies on women's rights and protection against abuse and exploitation (US Library of Congress). The current status of women in South Africa is to take pride in roles of mother, spouse, educator, and manager of the household (Wikipedia, 2012). Now in Brazil, as in the United States, women currently enjoy the same legal rights and duties of men (Wikipedia, 2012). They are equal in education, health treatment, marriage, and family. In contrast to the United States Brazil currently has a woman leader of their country, Dilma Rousseff, who "contributes to an imaginative reset of what women can be, and the authority and influence women can and should wield" (Torregrosa, 2012). In the past they did not hold the same rights as they gained the right to vote in 1932. Although Brazil has made strides for equality, women still lag behind in salaries, political influence, men traffic women for prostitution, and believe sterilization should be the main contraceptive for women. Lastly, there is hope that we can see each other as equals in the present and future. Like the great Martin Luther King said "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by their color of their skin but by the content of their character". We as a nation can further that by saying.....we will not judge by gender, sexual orientation, or class, but by content of character.