The Gender Gap
Lori Iles, Nathan Casteel, and Sami Toa
October 06, 2011
The Gender Gap
“Of all the ways that one group has systematically mistreated another, none is more deeply rooted than the way men have subordinated women.” “All other discriminations pale by contrast.” (Wolf.1994)
When Alan Wolfe penned these words, he was surely speaking about the atrocities that have occurred and continue to occur to women all over the world. Women have been beaten, raped, killed, mutilated, imprisoned, abused, enslaved, and forced to endure subhuman standards to claim dominance and control over them. Women have certainly bore the brunt of this power struggle ...view middle of the document...
The flames tauntingly seep out of the opening, lapping at the walls, and perched to ignite the firestorm of change. A shift that will place women in their rightful place; equal to men.
While ‘sex’ refers to the biological differences between males and females, gender describes the socially constructed roles, rights, and responsibilities that communities and societies consider appropriate for men and women.(undp.org) The ascribed status of male or female is separate from the roles that are assumed as men or women. These roles are learned through observation and interaction with others, and they can be inherently different throughout many cultures that make up society. Many cultures still consider the roles of men and women extremely diverse, and give less or little importance to the rights of women. This difference manifests in various ways, but nonetheless, is a form of discrimination. Gender inequality is a social issue that affects every human on the globe and the situation is dire, as countless women become victims of thoughtless disregard every day.
The United Nations has placed gender inequality third on the list of Millennium Development Goals list, eight social issues that must be addressed for positive social progress. As the third goal, along with the promise to promote gender equality and empower women, the target is to eliminate gender disparity in primary and secondary education in all levels of education no later than 2015 For many years, the UN has faced serious challenges in its efforts to promote gender equality globally, including inadequate funding and no single recognized driver to direct UN activities on gender equality issues.
In July 2010, UN Women, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women was created to address such challenges. In doing so, UN Member States took an historic step in accelerating the organization’s goals on gender equality and the empowerment of women by merging with the important work of the UN system, which focused exclusively on gender equality and women’s empowerment. The main roles of UN Women are to support inter-governmental bodies in their formulation of policies, global standards, and norms, to help Member States to implement these standards, and to forge effective partnerships with civil society.
The Global Gender Gap Report index assesses 134 countries on how well they divide resources and opportunities amongst male and female populations and measures the size of the gender inequality gap. Thee he index calculates economic participation and opportunity, including access to high-skilled employment, educational attainment, health and survival, and political empowerment and representation. According to the index’s co-author Ricardo Hausmann, Director of the Centre for International Development at Harvard University, says "We have found that gaps are closing between women and men’s health and education – in fact, current data show that in the 134...