Abstract

While global efforts to close gender gaps have taken great strides in the past years, broad cultural views and social institutions still exist to place women at a subordinate level to men. It is a common scenario to trivialize a woman’s achievements or power in instances when she does not conform to gender norms taken as “a given” in a cultural context. A few elementary examples of such social inequality could include unequal pay at the workplace or menstruation in cultures where it is considered a defilement of a woman’s body instead of a female bodily process. In most of these cases, we are privileged to be biased and hold our prejudices against the case both knowingly and unknowingly. Keeping this as the foundation of my research, I want to explore the analysis of a universal subordination of women to men in every culture regardless of the complexity of a particular culture basis the most universal distinction between humanity and other animals - the body and the mind. Such analysis has been made in the academic realms where Sherry B. Ortner, an American cultural anthropologist, examines the intriguing assumption of women appearing to be closer to nature and men being more aligned with culture. She elaborates on physiological, psychological, and social dimensions that corroborate the cultural view of women being closer to nature and thus inherently occupying a lower ground in culture or instead, sitting at an ‘intermediate’ position on that scale. I want to take the nature-culture relationship as a framework to create a more nuanced view of the argument to make the larger public of both men (to educate) and women (to identify) aware of their biases and prejudices in this context. I feel that putting these ideologies open discussions on the givens of the conventional gender norms.

Publication Date

5-28-2022

Document Type

Thesis

Student Type

Graduate

Degree Name

Visual Communication Design (MFA)

Department, Program, or Center

School of Design (CAD)

Advisor

Mike Strobert

Advisor/Committee Member

Adam Smith

Campus

RIT – Main Campus

Share

COinS