MEMO #2 Sociology 101 Introduction to Sociology DUE: Thursday, February 16, at the beginning of class Purpose: The objective of this

assignment is to demonstrate your understanding of the social construction of gender and the process of socialization into gender roles. Guidelines for doing the exercise: Visit either a toy store (e.g., Toys “R” Us) or a store with a large children’s toys department (e.g., Target, Wal-Mart). In your paper, be specific about the store where you did your “research.” Look for the girls’ and boys’ sections of the toy store/department. Take notes while at the store about the toy sections and about specific toys. Observe how both the packaging and toys themselves are similar and different. Observe and note how you can tell if a toy is intended for a boy or a girl. What you should write: 1) Be sure to define the following key terms, using the definitions provided in your Henslin text: socialization; sex; gender; gender socialization; and agents of socialization. 2) List the major agents of socialization in your childhood. Discuss those that you think have been most important for your gender socialization. Provide at least one specific example from your childhood. 3) Write about how toys are agents of socialization. Specifically, answer the question: How do toys socialize children into expected gender roles? Describe at least 3 toys. Be specific in your descriptions. Describe packaging, colors, and how the toys are intended to be used by children. Use these toys as examples to illustrate how toys play a role in gender socialization. 4) In your final paragraph, write about how you think gender roles learned in childhood may contribute to social inequality between adult men and women. Specifics: 1) Your memo should be 2 double-spaced typed pages in a 12-point font. 2) Memos are due BOTH in class and on WebCT. If I do not receive it in class, it is considered late. See the syllabus for my late policy. 3) Pretend that the reader is an intelligent person (e.g., your roommate; your mother) who is not enrolled in this class. Carefully define key concepts using your Henslin text and illustrate your arguments with concrete examples. Please write in first-person (e.g., “I observed at Wal-Mart...”)

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