Gender Identity

Submitted by: Submitted by

Views: 265

Words: 1167

Pages: 5

Category: Philosophy and Psychology

Date Submitted: 08/06/2012 12:17 PM

Report This Essay

Gender Identity


October 23, 2011

Tanya Harrell

Gender Identity

Gender Identity is a personal belief or conception of oneself as male or female and in most cases is self identified. It is very rare that a person will see him or herself as both or neither. By age three, gender identity is usually developed and can be extremely difficult to change after that. Two questions that remain about gender identity are, “Does the environment, in the form of postnatal learning experiences, shape our self-concepts as males or females? Or does gender identity reflect an intermingling of biological and environmental influences?” (University of Phoenix, 2005, p. 175). Regardless of how individuals identify their gender, the one thing that remains the same is how it completes that person.

Gender Identity develops through a process of differentiation through biological, social, and cognitive learning factors over a period of time. When a child is in the beginning stages of life, a male and a female fetus are undifferentiated, meaning they have a similar physical form. During the second month of prenatal development, the fetus begins to take the physical form of either a male or a female. The genetic code begins to create changes in the gonads, genital ducts, and the external genitals. “By about the seventh week of prenatal development, strands of tissue begin to organize into seminiferous tubules. Female gonads begin to develop somewhat later than male gonads. The forerunners of follicles that will bear ova are not found until the fetal stage of development, about 10 weeks after conception. Ovaries begin to form at 11 or 12 weeks.” (University of Phoenix, 2005, p. 173). The physical aspects of a person have a lot to do with gender identity because the way society looks at men and women, but the physical is not always what makes a person feel whole. Often times, a baby will be born with the physical parts of a boy, but at a young age the boy...