Femininity is not a word that we are encouraged to use these days. A lot of people would argue that femininity is the thing that keeps women obedient to men. However, there is a hidden assumption behind this term. The assumption is that masculinity is superior to femininity; that femininity is not a beautiful and powerful thing in its own right. I believe that women have something men do not have. Women have special qualities that belong to them as women, and they do not intend to suppress those special qualities. I think the world would be a much poorer place without femininity.
“What means to be a woman?” What first came to my mind was stereotypical. Passive, dependent, altruistic, intuitive emotionally open, and impulsivecis this what meant to be the ideal women in our society?
In general, men have more power in the public place such as economic and political order, while women have more power in the private place such as domestic life, family. The social whole will be best suited if each sex does those tasks for which they are best suited. In fact, men and women have biologically different capacities and interests (aggressive vs. maternal feelings, etc) In the role of the family, men have power in making decision and the women have control of housework.
I had encountered to see the different aspects of gender role in two societies. These two societies have their own values and beliefs that keep the man and the women different. However, the role of man is somewhat similar, though women have no similarities in a large scale. In Japan, women are considered to be gentle, modest, marry and take up housekeeping, support the entire family in any circumstances, and always graceful. One of the differences between two societies is the role of women at work. Japanese women who work at the firm are called “OL,” which is the abbreviation of “office lady.” Their role at the company is occupied with routine business such as making copies, serving green teas, go on an errand, cleaning up the desks, and throwing out the trash. This is the cultural norm of Japanese society. Women are not assigned to do jobs that carry responsibilities and efforts. They are not considered to be liable for important tasks.
Also, the role of women in the family is not considered to be important as men’s. Most of the families in Japan have very domineering husbands. Women do all the housework without the help from men. Women also do not have the control over money matter. On the other hand, the American culture considers women as equals to men. Women at work have their own offices, men and women share their roles in the family, and they both have control over money matter. These two societies have the norm that has been changing over the decades. Women’s role has changed. However, portray of women is somewhat typical and remains the same in a sense.
I believe that men and women are fundamentally the same and that all differences are the result of conditioning. Each of us is an individual, of course. The point is that femininity is something real. It is not something cooked up by society. It is no a cultural or historical accident. It is part of what we are. It is what makes us women rather than men, and if we prefer women to men, it is the thing we prefer.