- Chapter 2: Bodies
- Chapter 3: Families
- Chapter 4: Education
- Chapter 5: Work
- Chapter 6: Health and Illness
- Chapter 7: Media
- Chapter 8: Politics
- Chapter 9: Interpersonal Violence
- Chapter 10: Integrating Feminist Sociological Insights
Chapter 2: Bodies
In Chapter 2, "Bodies," we make visible the myriad efforts undertaken at individual and institutional levels to produce appropriately gendered bodies, revealing the many ways that historically specific knowledge shapes bodies and our experiences of them. Our discussion of intersexuality in the focal point illuminates the body as a site of gendered practice reflecting the global system of gender and its intersections with race, class, sexuality, (dis)ability and age. We explore the potential for social justice with regard to bodies by challenging body fascism and suggesting how to work toward the democratization of body forms and domestic and global arrangements which ensure and protect the sanctity and integrity of all bodies.
Chapter 3: Families
Chapter 3, "Families," illustrates the social construction of family to create and maintain gender disparities, including the practice of women taking their husband’s name when they marry and the distribution of work within families. You have the opportunity to explore how gender relationships within families vary depending upon other systems of inequality, such as race, class, and sexuality. The chapter enhances your ability to recognize the impact social policies have on social justice in families and increases your understanding of how to create social justice within your own relationships as well as in family policies.
Chapter 4: Education
Chapter 4, "Education," shows how educational institutions reinforce the social order, but, due to the efforts of activists to reform education, it has become much more egalitarian over the past century and a half. The chapter examines how educational systems still segregate girls and boys structurally and symbolically, providing them with differential skills in reading, math, and the sciences, and curricula that emphasize and legitimate men’s status as historical figures, leaders, and authority figures. The focal point on the oft- cited concern of schools failing boys reveals the complexity of gendered disparities and the continuing significance of race and class in education. We conclude by discussing how to make schools more socially just.
Chapter 5: Work
Chapter 5, "Work," explores how gender is entrenched in conceptions of work, how creating social justice means changing how we think about work, the impact of global capitalism, and the effects of race, class, sexuality, and (dis)ability on creating, maintaining, and changing a gendered economy. Another aspect of this chapter is how the significant gains and losses by women and marginalized men over the past half century are incorporated and resisted in the workplace and what this means for social justice. We conclude by recommending the development and support of policies that provide decent work for all people.
Chapter 6: Health and Illness
Chapter 6, "Health and Illness," illuminates health disparities among different types of women and men that are the outgrowth of differential access to healthcare and the androcentric orientation of healthcare knowledge and provision. Given our concerns with social justice, we move beyond biomedical definitions of health as freedom from illness in individuals to recast health in terms of public health. As with other sites of gender analysis, those who suffer the inequalities of race, class, and sexuality, as well as global inequalities in wealth across nations, experience poorer health. We argue that social justice in health requires not only universal affordable access to healthcare, but also a reconfiguration of commonly held ideas about healthcare and work toward social justice in other institutions.
Chapter 7: Media
Chapter 7, "Media," reveals how media simultaneously create, reinforce, and challenge the gender order. Concerns with profits yield subject matter that reinforces gendered arrangements as they intersect with race, class, sexuality, (dis)ability, and nationality. You will grapple with the significant power of mass media, including how it contributes to the maintenance of the gender order as well as its potential to advance social justice.
Chapter 8: Politics
Chapter 8, "Politics," addresses the significance of gender in the world of politics. Formal political institutions remain the bastion of men, who occupy the lion’s share of powerful political positions domestically and globally so that political issues are largely framed in terms of men’s interests. Women’s alienation from formal politics results in their involvement in informal politics. Within the realm of informal politics women have struggled for social justice. These informal strategies have often borne fruit, resulting in significant domestic and global policies that work toward social justice.
Chapter 9: Interpersonal Violence
In Chapter 9, "Interpersonal Violence," you face the challenge of uncovering gendered assumptions in definitions and conceptions of interpersonal violence. You will also investigate how violence, which is often understood and treated solely as an individual act, is structured by the social order. The focal point on rape links violence with power and dominance in terms of not only gender but also race, class, sexuality, (dis)ability, and place in the global economic order. To strive toward social justice, we need to work toward cultures of peace rather than cultures that promote violence.
Chapter 10: Integrating Feminist Sociological Insights
The concluding chapter of the textbook, "Integrating Feminist Sociological Insights for Future Investigations and Actions," draws together all that you will have learned so that you are in a position to conduct your own gender analyses. This integrative chapter will remind you of the conceptual framework used throughout the text and how that framework helps you understand "what to look for" and "where to look" for the social construction of gender, gender inequalities, intersectionalities, relational global analyses, and social change and social justice. The chapter concludes by explaining how gendering processes are part of a complex web of global interrelations.