Thursday, February 18, 2010

I Need to Get Four Wheels of My Own

Is it or isn't it a gender thing. Any time I see a couple driving out together, the guy is always behind the wheel. As I started to focus my attention on gender roles that are conditioned into the mind's of boys and girls growing up, I immediately began to tie this pattern to the way in which upbringing plays a part in all this.

In my own family which likes to hold true to traditional gender roles, there always seemed to be an underlying belief that driving is more of a manly thing to do. That this fact shows in the notion that boys start to drive, on average before girls do and are usually apparently "better" drivers.
Some comments at Freakonomics spoke
of how this pattern relates quite directly to how patriarchal ideas inform men that they should be in control as a means of properly asserting masculinity. So, in a sense, the car is quite clearly a strong phallic symbol. One which affords a boy or man a feeling of dominance and power. Seldom can you find a brother that is secure enough in his masculinity to let you take the driver's seat just because.

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