IGNOU BGDG 172 Solved Assignment 2022-23

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IGNOU BGDG 172 Solved Assignment 2022-2023

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Submission Date :

  • 31st March 2033 (if enrolled in the July 2033 Session)
  • 30th Sept, 2033 (if enrolled in the January 2033 session).

Answer the following in about 500 words each in Section A. Each question carry 20 marks.

Answer the following questions in about 250 words each in Section B. Each question carry 10 marks.

Answer the following questions in about 100 words each in Section C. Each question carry 6 marks.


1. Describe the terms masculinity and femininity in India? Do you think it shapes gender roles? Explain.

Gender stereotype theory suggests that men are generally perceived as more masculine than women, whereas women are generally perceived as more feminine than men. Several scales have been developed to measure fundamental aspects of gender stereotypes (e.g., agency and communion, competence and warmth, or instrumentality and expressivity). Although omitted in later version, Bem’s original Sex Role Inventory included the items “masculine” and “feminine” in addition to more specific gender-stereotypical attributes. We argue that it is useful to be able to measure these two core concepts in a reliable, valid, and parsimonious way. We introduce a new and brief scale, the Traditional Masculinity-Femininity (TMF) scale, designed to assess central facets of self-ascribed masculinity-femininity. Studies 1–2 used known-groups approaches (participants differing in gender and sexual orientation) to validate the scale and provide evidence of its convergent validity. As expected the TMF reliably measured a one-dimensional masculinity-femininity construct. Moreover, the TMF correlated moderately with other gender-related measures. Demonstrating incremental validity, the TMF predicted gender and sexual orientation in a superior way than established adjective-based measures. Furthermore, the TMF was connected to criterion characteristics, such as judgments as straight by laypersons for the whole sample, voice pitch characteristics for the female subsample, and contact to gay men for the male subsample, and outperformed other gender-related scales. Taken together, as long as gender differences continue to exist, we suggest that the TMF provides a valuable methodological addition for research into gender stereotypes.


Every time a group of people is addressed as “Ladies and Gentlemen!” the pervasiveness of gender over all other social categories is demonstrated. Gender is also one of the first social categories that children learn in today’s societies, and thus knowledge of gender stereotypes is evident from early childhood on (for a recent review, see Steffens and Viladot, 2015) and into adulthood, with both adolescents and college students construing their self-concepts in line with the gender stereotypes they have internalized (e.g., Nosek et al., 2002; Steffens et al., 2010). Since the 1970s, following Bem’s (1974) pioneering work, many scales have been designed, developed, and widely used for measuring traits traditionally considered as typically male vs. typically female (Constantinople, 1973). In recent years, such measures have often failed to find between-gender differences in self-ascriptions of gender stereotypical traits (e.g., Sczesny et al., 2004), which is presumably due to changes in gender roles across the decades (e.g., Diekman and Eagly, 2000; Wilde and Diekman, 2005; Ebert et al., 2014). Still, gender differences in self-ascriptions do continue to exist, and there are attempts to measure different aspects of masculinity and femininity, including, for example, everyday behavior such as housework (Athenstaedt, 2003). In the present paper, we argue that a scale that reliably and validly measures differences in an individual’s underlying conceptualization of his or her own masculinity-femininity would be valuable for gender research. To date, these constructs can only be measured using two items, “masculine” and “feminine,” which is somewhat limited given that established standards of psychological assessment typically recommend using a larger number of items (e.g., Bühner, 2010). In the present article, we introduce a new, extended, but still parsimonious scale, the Traditional Masculinity-Femininity Scale, TMF, to fill this gap. Using a known-groups approach, we present two studies testing this measure’s reliability as well as its incremental and criterion validity, and we provide evidence for its convergent validity.

We define “traditional masculinity” and “traditional femininity” as relatively enduring characteristics encompassing traits, appearances, interests, and behaviors that have traditionally been considered relatively more typical of women and men, respectively (adapting the definitions provided by Constantinople, 1973). It is important to note that the focus of the present paper is on gender-related self-assessment. Complementary research has investigated many different aspects of gender, for example, gender-role norms (e.g., Athenstaedt, 2000; Thompson and Bennet, 2015; Klocke and Lamberty, unpublished manuscript).

In a seminal study on masculinity and femininity, Deaux and Lewis (1984) investigated the perceived relationship between gender and gender-related components, such as role behaviors (e.g., head of household vs. takes care of children), traits, occupations, and physical characteristics (e.g., tall, broad-shouldered vs. soft voice, graceful). The researchers showed that these components were interdependent, impacting on one another, as well as on perceived gender and sexual orientation. In other words, participants readily generalized from one component to the others. In addition, physical appearance played a particularly large role. Such findings indicate that gender stereotypes may be based on some sort of “core” masculinity and femininity. Similarly, individuals may use such “core” masculinity and femininity in their self-construal.

The first attempts to gauge masculinity and femininity placed these constructs on a bipolar spectrum and involved measuring simple collections of personality traits on which women and men differed on average (for a review, see Constantinople, 1973). By contrast, Bem’s pioneering Sex Role Inventory (BSRI; Bem, 1974) used gender-stereotypical traits to independently measure masculinity and femininity (e.g., masculine items such as competitive and dominant, and feminine items such as affectionate and gentle). She pointed out that women/men who score high on both scales were called androgynous. Importantly, “masculine” and “feminine” were included as items in these original scales, but were excluded from the revised version (Bem, 1979) because of problematic loadings on the factors on which the masculine and feminine traits loaded, respectively. Exploratory factor analyses showed an instable factor structure but often converged on three-factor solutions: Masculine traits on one factor, feminine traits on a second factor, and masculine-feminine along with participant gender on a third factor (e.g., Niedlich et al., 2015, see review by Choi and Fuqua, 2003). It has thus been suggested that the two independent masculinity and femininity trait dimensions are complemented by one bipolar masculinity-femininity dimension (see Constantinople, 1973; Spence et al., 1975; Bem, 1979) that reflects gender identity instead of gender-role related aspects (e.g., Bem, 1979; Spence and Buckner, 2000). As Choi and Fuqua (2003) suggest, inventories such as the BSRI “may not capture the complex and multidimensional nature of masculinity/femininity.” Instead, “masculinity and femininity could be two higher order constructs, with each having its own subconstructs” (p. 873). Similar to other scales (e.g., Personal Attributes Questionnaire, PAQ, by Spence et al., 1975), the BSRI appears to tap more specific constructs, often referred to as instrumentality/agency and expressivity/communion (e.g., Fiske et al., 2002; Abele and Wojciszke, 2007), rather than masculinity and femininity in general. For the present purposes it is important to note that if masculinity and femininity are directly measured they should load on one bipolar masculinity-femininity dimension.

2.Describe the relationship of labour force participation, economy and gender question as a key focus. Support your argument by providing suitable examples.


The labour force participation rate for women in India is one of the lowest in the world (ILO, 2017). Despite educational gains in terms of increasing literacy among women (literacy rates of women have increased from 16.83 per cent in 1951 to 65.46 per cent in 2011; Government of India, 2011), the labour force participation rate for women in 2017 was 28.5 per cent (compared with 82 per cent for men) (World Economic Forum, 2017). Female participation rates declined from 34.1 per cent in 1999–2000 to 27.2 per cent in 2011–2012, and wide gender differences in participation rate also persists (World Economic Forum, 2017). This is a huge cause of concern. According to estimates made by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), India, the world’s largest democracy, would have been 27 per cent richer if women had participated in the labour market in the same rate as men (Lagarde & Ostry, 2018). This is an extremely worrying trend because according to a study conducted by the World Food Programme, when girls and women earn, they invest 90 per cent of it in their families and communities.1 Gender inequality in labour force participation is not only a pressing moral and social issue but also a critical economic challenge. If women—who account for half the world’s working-age population—do not achieve their full economic potential, the global economy will suffer. Some of the most important positive drivers of women labour force participation include educational attainment, fertility rates and the age of marriage, economic growth/cyclical effects and urbanization. In addition to these issues, social norms determining the role of women in the public domain continue to negatively affect outcomes.
Studies (PEW, 2014) show that women tend to earn more than their mothers but not more than their fathers. This means that women are yet to achieve equality in employment though they have found equality in education at least till the secondary levels. Then there are two issues; one is the access to education and the other to employment which seems to be eluding women even when they are as educated as their male colleagues. Various reasons keep women away from employment, and the purpose of this article is to discern how these reasons emanate from traditional beliefs and notions, especially as these are transmitted into the policy designs. A professional woman, especially in India today, still struggles with the harsh realities of discrimination, exploitation and violence in organizations, societal and family pressures and suffers from the bitter effects of the balancing act which she is expected to perform for handling workplace and household chores. The decision of and ability for women to participate in the labour force is the outcome of various economic and social factors that interact in a complex fashion at both the household and societal levels. Since traditionally across the human society, women’s roles are subservient to those of men, equal opportunities in the workspace seem to be culturally and even morally anomalous to human societies most of the times. Equal participation especially in work in which humans engage in a relationship of exchange in a public space gets to be looked at and seen as defiance by women requiring punishment for containment of abrogation of social boundaries. In this article I would like to argue some of the factors that are negatively affecting women’s participation in labour force and illustrate some evidence which have worked to remove some of these barriers.
Globalization is a multi-dimensional process of economic, political, cultural and ideological change. It has led to increase violations of women’s economic, political and cultural rights in a large measure because of withering away of the welfarist/developmentalist state, the feminization of poverty, the expansion of religious fundamentalisms and new form of militarism and conflict (Mohapatra, 2015). Often being unorganized, facing recurrent inequity in employment and harassment at work and violation of their human rights, with low levels of education, limited technological skills, women workers easily become marginalized and hardly derive any benefits from the ever new opportunities emerging in an open and competitive world trade.

Woman as Homemaker—A Social Obligation?

Empirical evidence shows that women are predominantly engaged in work that can be regarded as an extension of their domestic responsibilities (e.g., maids, tailors, teachers and nurses) and takers for training on skills which break the gender stereotypes like driving, motor mechanic, etc. are very few and far between. In addition, a large proportion of women prefer to participate in home-based work, which is more easily combined with domestic-care responsibilities. It is interesting to note that most notable is the falling engagement of women in the Indian labour force, which occurred despite strong economic growth and rising wages and incomes.
Almost ubiquitously across societies, men and women are not only hierarchically placed in terms of the man being superior to the woman but also their spaces are clearly divided and demarcated. The women are supposed to inhere the private space and men the public space. All occupations and jobs in the private space fetch less income than jobs in the public space. Jobs that become informalized for instance, the garment factories from organized employment to informal job work starts to employ women but at lower wages than what it would do for men in factories. Not often noticed in academic writings but whenever jobs become dominated by women, wages start to drop and the employment become informalized. The garment factory is a major instance of the same. School teaching is perhaps yet another instance of heavy work and low pay and informalization.
In India, as almost everywhere else, the social norms tend to attribute the primary responsibility in securing household income through employment to men, while women are expected to devote their time to domestic care. This leads to gender differences in employment outcomes, such as sectoral and occupational segregation, and to differences in determinants of participation for men and women (Kapsos, Silberman, & Bourmpoula, 2014). As bizarre as it may sound, most Indian men are yet to come to terms with the fact that women are also capable of working with them, shoulder to shoulder, in any field or professional sphere. They still visualize women as individuals who should be in charge of the kitchen and other domestic affairs. Work is either seen as a temporary evil for women whose husbands do not earn enough, or the domain of women who do not ‘know their place’.
Even when women do go to work outside the home, men prefer such employment to be highly gendered such as school teaching or clerical staff or receptionists and typists. Except for teaching, women are expected to leave their jobs once they are married. It is interesting to note that aspirations of young girls in India also to a large extent conform to social norms. In a study conducted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in four cities in India (Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Delhi NCR) it was seen that sectors such as ‘Beauty & Wellness’, ‘IT & ITES’, ‘Textile & Clothing’, ‘Tourism, Travel, Hospitality & Trade’ and ‘Education & Skill Development’ appear across all four cities as top priorities for working girls (UNDP, 2015).
One important reason highlighted in the UNDP study quoted above for women/girls for guiding their aspiration is the relationship between aspirations, age and marital status. The study observed that women and girls in the age group of 16–22 years are more likely to aspire to be a part of the workforce as employees in sectors which are not gendered, on the other hand, women and girls in the age group of 23–34 years are more likely to aspire to be a part of the workforce as entrepreneurs where they have more command of their own time. This difference can be attributed to the fact that women in the age group of 16–22 years mostly includes girls who are not yet married and therefore do not have to shoulder a heavy load of domestic chores/responsibilities. This provides them with the time and freedom required to commit hours to formal employment. No matter how high their position or designation is in the office, women in India are still viewed as the family manager back home. They are expected to return home at a certain time, cook, clean and take care of family affairs. Besides, it is also seen that women overwhelmingly work in the informal economy generating lower incomes than men.
Lack of Education and Job-oriented Skills

It is proven that female participation in the workforce increases along with educational levels. Hence, to unlock the full economic potential of women’s participation, India needs to bring about an employment revolution, along with a skill development or educational revolution. It is also observed that the concept of training and skill development of women needs to move beyond the conventional goal of imparting technical and managerial competencies, playing a broader role of even including basic literacy, numeracy, critical social and political awareness, awareness about gender and enhancing life skills (Diwakar & Ahamad, 2015).
Apart from prevailing social norms, asymmetry of information between men and women about availability of jobs in a particular sector and details about the demands of the job profile often keep women confined to only a few sectors. This asymmetry of information is more apparent in the rural areas where there are very few skill training institutes whether public or private. As a result, the range of skills training offered to them is limited. Another important issue for young girls in the rural areas is their inability to migrate to other areas. Jobs in the service sector are more in the urban areas but young girls from rural areas are not in a position to accept them because it would require them to migrate from their homes to an ‘unknown’ city or town. One can imagine how difficult it is for young girls when even young boys prefer to work at a place near their homes.
The National Policy on Skill Development of Government of India points out that the aim of skill development, particularly in case of women, is not only to prepare them for jobs but also to improve the performance of women workers by enhancing the quality of work in which they are engaged. Training and skill development will encourage higher self-esteem among women and overall personality development. It is also urged that for skill development to be more effective, training needs to bend towards developing the kind of skills that women already know. However, focus on upgradation need not be at the cost of developing new skills, especially in the case of women who otherwise may get further entrenched in traditional skills and roles. Hence, there is a need to make the skill development process accommodating and flexible to encourage women to enrol themselves (Government of India, 2015).


3. Critically evaluate the role of the family from gender lens.
4. What is Sexual Harassment at Workplace. Examine its forms.
5. Write in your own words the ‘construction of a girl child’ with suitable examples.


6. Write a note on patriarchy.
7. What is radical feminism.
8. What are reproductive rights of Indian women?
9. Define productive and reproductive work.
10. What is mass media? 

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IGNOU BGDG 172 Solved Assignment 2022-2023 Download Free  Before attempting the assignment, please read the following instructions carefully.

  1. Read the detailed instructions about the assignment given in the Handbook and Programme Guide.
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