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Paper Information

Journal:   SOCIAL WELFARE   SUMMER 2007 , Volume 6 , Number 25; Page(s) 169 To 191.


Author(s):  RIAHI M.E.*

Objectives: The present study seeks to describe gender-related attitude of young men and women of Mazandaran province, and also to explain associations between this attitude and some socio-familial factors.

Method: The study is conducted via survey method; and data has been collected through self-administered questionnaire. The subjects of the study were 425 young men and women who were under training in the Vocational Training Centers in the Mazandaran province. Gender-related attitude is considered as dependent variable and measured with an investigator-made scale based on 12 questions concerning roles, tasks, and positions of men and women in the family and society. Some of these questions, for example, were about governing of important issues in the society, doing intellectual works, women employment, full obedience of women from men, management ability of women, etc. The overall reliability coefficient for the scale was .902, indicating very high internal consistency of the scale. Some socio-demographic and socio-familial factors (such as gender, place of residence, marital status, age groups, level of education, employment status, job-related attitude, and type of parents' behavior at home) have been treated as independent variables. To analyze the collected data, SPSS (version.12) has been applied.

Findings: The findings of the study indicated that the respondents were young men and women (16-25 years old), who mainly were residents of urban areas, unmarried, and educated nearly between 10-12 years (up to Diploma). These respondents mainly were unemployed, belonged to large-size and low/medium socio-economic status families. Furthermore, the study concluded that there are some significant differences between men and women respondents concerning gender-related attitude; For instance, 57/9 percent of men as compared to 17/2 percent of women were agreed that important issues of society have to be deposited only to men; or 53/4 percent of men as compared to 8/6 percent of women were believed that women have to obey men in the personal and familial life. Furthermore, 20/8 percent of men as compared to 75/1 percent of women were disagreed that men managers are successful than women managers. These different distributions of beliefs concerning roles, tasks, and positions of each gender in the family and society, can be an index of different gender-related attitudes of young respondents.

Results: men as compared to women had reported more patriarchic attitudes (traditional attitude towards gender roles and relations). Namely, on the whole, men were believed that a) important issues of the society have to be governed by men; b) women's ability in the intellectual activities, management, employment, settlement of personal and social problems is less than men; c) women have to work at home as a housekeeper only, or in such jobs as teaching and nursing; and finally d) women have to obey men in the personal and familial life. In contrast, women's beliefs concerning gender-related attitudes were mostly opposed to men; for example, they believed that women can govern important issues in the society; their ability in intellectual activities, management, employment, settlement of personal and social problems is equal to men; doing housework is not only women's obligation and they can be successful in all kind of jobs; and finally women can disobey men. Moreover, residents of rural areas and unmarried persons as compared to their counterparts in urban areas and married ones have reported more patriarchic attitude.

Applying T-test and ANOVA, some significant associations between gender related attitude and some socio-demographic factors such as age groups, place of residence, marital status, level of education, and employment status have been observed. Finally, the results of multiple regression analysis showed that formation and expressing of gender-related attitude can be under influence of such variables as gender, job-related attitude, and type of parents' behavior at home. There was a very strong relationship (r= .739) between gender-related attitudes and these variables, and 54/5 percent of variations in dependent variable can be explained by these three independent variables. In the other words, young men, those respondents who were believed in traditional labor division (job related attitude), and those respondents whom their parents were very severe and hard at home showed more patriarchic attitude than other respondents.

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