This article looks into the social construct of how we attach meaning to colors and clothing.  Gender is socially constructed that associates certain traits or behavior as feminine and masculine.  Pink has been associated with girls while blue with boys, this as this article explains, this was not always the case!  So our idea of gender changes over time and place.

The whole “nature vs. nurture”…  While I thin it’s a lot of nurture, I can’t ignore the possibility that it might be both.  For example, take the book As Nature Made Him: The boy who was raised as a girl by John Colapinto.  The infant boy’s penis was cut off when he was been circumcised, so the doctors advice to turn him into a girl and never disclose this to the boy.  The boy took estrogen hormones over the years and grew up as a girl, however, her attraction was for women… eventually the truth came out, as no matter how much nurture this boy was into the role of a girl, it didn’t work.

Anyway, this is an interesting article that tells you how dressing is gendered… and that in other times boys used to wear dresses.

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/When-Did-Girls-Start-Wearing-Pink.html?c=y&page=1

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2 responses

  1. brutenbe says:

    Something that has always fascinated me is gender (from a cultural perspective) – what is it, how is it defined, who decides on the definition, why do people follow that definition. Reading this article and following the history – in this country – of when and how colors were (arbitrarily) picked to signify the gender of a baby was not only educational, but fascinating.

    I found it so interesting that when prenatal testing became commonplace, and parents could know, ahead of time, what sex their baby would be, identifying the sex of that baby, through ‘color coding’, suddenly became very important to parents . Manufacturers then created more gender specific ‘color coded’ products for parents to buy, which reinforced the gender specific colors, and made the cycle loop and continue on. Wow, simple and complex all at the same time.

    This was a great article to read, thank you for posting it.

    -Brielle

    • Herminia Gomez says:

      Thanks Brielle,

      Gender is pretty intersting. I think its interesting that we associate boy and girl with specific colors… as if colors themselves had gender. And isn’t like that with everything? Cars… other products, etc.

      -Mina