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Gender Development, Adolescence and Adulthood

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Presentation on theme: "Gender Development, Adolescence and Adulthood"— Presentation transcript:

1 Gender Development, Adolescence and Adulthood

2 Where does gender come from?
Biological and Social Influences

3 What’s the difference between sex and gender?
Name Address Sex? Name Address Gender? Male Female Biology determines all sex differences, but only some gender difference.

4 Where does gender come from?
Biological influence A few of the behavioral differences between genders can be explained by biology, but a great many cannot. Social influence: Gender Socialization Does it begin before birth? Gives you stuff to ‘hang’ on your gender schema 9-11 months – recognize gender difference 3-4 years - gender identity (am I a boy or a girl?) 5-7 years - RIGID gender roles Midlife (45+) – gender roles relax

5 When does adolescence begin?
Biological influence: Puberty Until Puberty: Androgens/estrogens equal in boys and girls Puberty: A person becomes capable of reproducing. Androgens (“male” hormones) are now higher in boys; estrogens (“female” hormones) in girls, but we still both have both.

6 What happens in adolescence?
Biological influence: Brain Changes In addition to visible physical changes of puberty, the BRAIN changes. Growth of new brain connections, “pruning” of unused brain connections, especially in pre-frontal cortex (judgment, controlling impulses, planning, emotional processing)

7 When does it end? 18-25: Are you an adult? “Yes and No”

8 Are adolescents angry, rebellious, mean to their parents and low in self-esteem?
Actually – no. Children of “baby boomers” are close to their parents, are confident, have friends and a “sense of purpose” in life, but...

9 Do adolescents have any problems?
More often than at other times in life: moody, disagree with parents, break rules and take risks. Some gender difference: Boys more often externalize (aggression) and girls more often internalize their feelings (withdrawal, eating disorders).

10 Erik Erikson’s Stages and “Crises”
Trust vs Mistrust: first year Autonomy vs shame and doubt: toddler Initiative vs guilt: preschool Competence vs inferiority: school-age child Identity vs role confusion: adolescence Intimacy vs isolation: young adulthood Generativity vs stagnation: middle age Ego integrity vs despair: late adulthood Erikson: For best results, resolve each crisis on time and in order! But Erikson knew, not everyone does – and things are different in different cultures.

11 Life Transitions and the “Social Clock”
Different cultures and different historical periods have different “social clocks” (that tell you when to get married, when to go to school, when to retire or have children) and some are more flexible than others, but we still see some patterns and transitions in adult life…

12 Emerging Adulthood: 18-25? 30? +?
Clearer in some cultures, but in ours, when do you become an adult? Move a lot Lots of risky behavior Still free and exploring (unless restricted by parenting, poverty, religion, culture, etc.)

13 Middle Adulthood: 35-65 “Prime of Life” for both men and women
Healthy Psychologically and physically Productive in work Connected to family and community Decline in estrogen/testosterone More extreme in women – menstruation ends Lower sperm count for men, and some disorders – like schizophrenia – more common in children with fathers over 50

14 Late Adulthood (Old Age)
When does it begin? Later and later all the time. Are older people lonely, depressed, forgetful, and slow thinkers? ….No!

15 Late Adulthood (Old Age)
IF you remain active, Numeric and verbal ability remain steady into 80s Slight decline in verbal memory; greater decline in spatial orientation, perceptual speed Fluid intelligence (deductive reasoning, problem solving) and crystallized intelligence (content) stay the same or improve! Problems like depression, senility, weakness often caused by medication interactions or inactivity (mental and physical)

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