Do women express their feelings more than men? Popular stereotypes say they do, but in this provocative book, Leslie Brody breaks with conventional wisdom. Integrating a wealth of perspectives and research--biological, sociocultural, developmental--her work explores the nature and extent of gender differences in emotional expression, as well as the endlessly complex question of how such differences come about.
Nurture, far more than nature, emerges here as the stronger force in fashioning gender differences in emotional expression. Brody shows that whether and how men and women express their feelings varies widely from situation to situation and from culture to culture, and depends on a number of particular characteristics including age, ethnicity, cultural background, power, and status.
Especially pertinent is the organization of the family, in which boys and girls elicit and absorb different emotional strategies. Brody also examines the importance of gender roles, whether in the family, the peer group, or the culture at large, as men and women use various patterns of emotional expression to adapt to power and status imbalances.
Lucid and level-headed, Gender, Emotion, and the Family offers an unusually rich and nuanced picture of the great range of male and female emotional styles, and the variety of the human character.
This academic treatise deals with the relationship of family, gender, and emotion. Brody (Ph.D., Boston Univ.) has been involved for many years in the study of gender differences. Drawing on a wealth of research, she illuminates the ways in which men and women, boys and girls, develop and express emotions in the context of the family. Research across cultures and age groups is included but, interestingly, there is no mention of matriarchal societies. This in-depth research addresses many issues, from power in relationships to the physiological expression of emotion; evidence of contradictory findings is detailed. This is a valuable addition to the ever-changing frontiers of behavior research. With footnotes and an extensive bibliography; for upper-division undergraduates and above.?Margaret Cardwell, Georgia Perimeter Coll., Clarkston Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
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Harvard University Press
April 15, 2001
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