Authour: OHIA, BEN-FRED Ph.D

Sex difference is a divine initiative that is meant for the optimum development of humankind.
However, Society has capitalized on certain characteristics of the sexes as well as exploited same for the oppression of particularly the female gender. This, womenfolk regard as crime of patriarchy against matriarchy. This work seeks to examine the social conception of gender
signification and proposes that meaningful progress depends on the willingness of the genders to engage in honest dialogue.
Keywords: Issues and prospects, Sex difference, Gender dialogue, Interrogation, Gender signification.

Human life is structured in relation to the aspirations and expectations or constraints which the Society designs for the two sexes. Emile Durkheim calls this phenomenon “Social
Fact” due to the coercive influence it imposes on people (p. 7). According to Eakins and Eakins (1978), sex refers to the biological difference between “females and males” – differences in the
genetic and reproductive functions” (p.4). The society has invented certain attributes around the
sexes to sustain the ethics of each system. The male and female beings are assigned distinct
characteristics and are evaluated differently, depending on social worth. This work proves the
nature ofsex difference and interrogated itsimpact on genderrelations within intellectualspace.
Society’s Social Perception of Sex Difference
To a larger extent, the Society determines an individual’s responses to reality. Eakins and
Eakins (1978) corroborate this notion when they stated that “Our Religious, Educational and
political Institutions promulgate attitudes along sexist biases…patterned behavior from our
unwritten but ever present culturalfiles of whatfemales do and whatmales do” (p.5).
The above confirms the comment by Hess et al, (1985) that “the character of our
relationship with others is strongly influenced by nature of our environment” (P.178). Their
survey shows one outstanding consequence of fragmenting human beings along gender roles.
“We become gendered persons living in the gendered world, thinking gendered thought.
Depending on the culture, these gendered roles can overlap or be so different that men and women
have difficulty in understanding one another’s experience” (p.193). This affirms Webster’s
definition of gender as “socially constructed difference which forms the basis of inequality,
oppression and exploitation between the sexes” (p.72).
From the foregoing, it is obvious that individual responses to reality are more or less
external manifestation of gender roles which have been internalized over a period of time. A
research conducted by Rosencrantz et al (1968) on sex role stereotype reveals that the male is
readily accepted as being active, aggressive, ambitious, dominant and independent while the
female is to be gentle, emotional, quiet or talkative, caring but insecure (p.291). Okereke (1998)
affirms this when she shows the differential treatment colonial education meted to both sexes. It Ohia, Ben-Fred (Ph.D), Department of Ogba Language, Federal College of Education (Technical), Omoku, Rivers
State, Nigeria.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *