Health & Medical Sexual Development & Reproductive Health Discussion

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”Do you think that “traditional” gender roles are appropriate in American society today? If you think that some are appropriate and some are not, pick one example from each category and explain your feelings about their appropriateness or inappropriateness.”

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As a medical professor, my role is to facilitate the educational journey of medical college students by designing assignments that encourage critical thinking and provide opportunities for reflection on various societal issues. In response to the provided question, the discussion will focus on the appropriateness of “traditional” gender roles in American society today, highlighting specific examples from both categories and offering personal insights on their appropriateness or inappropriateness.


In evaluating the appropriateness of “traditional” gender roles in American society today, it is important to consider the evolving nature of societal values and expectations. While some traditional gender roles may still hold relevance and validity, others may be deemed inappropriate based on the principles of equality and freedom of choice.

One example of a traditional gender role that could be considered appropriate in American society today is the notion of women as caregivers within the family unit. Historically, women have been primarily responsible for nurturing and caring for children, ensuring their well-being and development. This role has often been considered appropriate due to the unique biological capabilities of women, such as pregnancy and breastfeeding, which enable them to provide essential care for their children. Moreover, research indicates that a secure attachment bond with a primary caregiver, often the mother, promotes healthy socioemotional development in children. Therefore, supporting this traditional gender role acknowledges the biological and psychological advantages that women possess, contributing to the overall well-being of the family unit.

On the other hand, an example of a traditional gender role that may be deemed inappropriate in American society today is the expectation of men to be the sole breadwinners and providers for the family. This expectation places undue pressure on men, limiting their choices and potentially hindering their personal and professional fulfillment. Furthermore, it perpetuates gender stereotypes and creates an environment where men may feel inadequate if they do not conform to this expectation. Acknowledging that both men and women are capable of contributing to and supporting their families financially is crucial for promoting gender equality, breaking down societal barriers, and challenging narrow definitions of masculinity.

In summary, evaluating the appropriateness of “traditional” gender roles necessitates an understanding of the broader social and cultural contexts. While some roles may be deemed appropriate due to biological or psychological differences, others may perpetuate inequality or restrict individual choice. Promoting gender equality, freedom of choice, and the recognition of individual capabilities can help reshape societal norms and foster a more inclusive and equitable American society.

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