Women: how would you describe being a "modern" woman today? | INFJ Forum

Women: how would you describe being a "modern" woman today?

Discussion in 'Relationships and Sociology' started by Gaze, Oct 13, 2010.

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  1. Gaze

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    Women: How would you describe being a modern woman today?


    How do you think age, culture, beliefs, norms, etc. factor in?
     
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    #1 Gaze, Oct 13, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2010
  2. Soulful

    Soulful life is good

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    It's incredible how much this varies by region and culture.

    I'm not sure that I have an answer to this question. I've struggled with my own notion of womanhood, or with my own experience, and at best, I am working to come to terms with who I am as a person.

    I know there are expectations about who and how women should be and live, some of which are hypocritical and double-edged swords types of expectations, but then again that can be said about most social expectations.

    I think part of being a 'modern' woman in Western culture is the idea of being independent and self-reliant.
     
  3. OP
    Gaze

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    Could you elaborate? How do YOU define being a woman today?
     
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  4. OP
    Gaze

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    Question edited: :)
     
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  5. Peppermint

    Peppermint Well-known member

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    A modern woman is independent, capable of being self-sufficient, realizes the value of education and is a self aware human being with an ability to make good (in context) choices. Same goes for a man, really.
     
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  6. OP
    Gaze

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    So men and women are considered the same, treated the same, experience the world in the same way, etc.? No differences?
     
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    #6 Gaze, Oct 14, 2010
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  7. Peppermint

    Peppermint Well-known member

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    No.

    What I said is my general view of what a modern individual would be like.
    That is, more or less an ideal form of some (would be) shared characteristics.
     
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  8. OP
    Gaze

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    Ah, ok. Well, i was hoping to get a more specific description based on what each person feels about being man or woman today. I think most people are probably aware of the general expectations or rights of each person.

    I was curious about the specifics of gender, aspects which we are not often discussed.
     
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  9. Peppermint

    Peppermint Well-known member

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    Yeah, I am aware of the differences, but I'm more inclined to reconcile them in viewing people as individuals rather than members of a gender.

    I think that similarities are greater than differences. I know that is more of an idealistic outlook that doesn't hold up in the reality of many different cultures, religions and lifestyles though.
     
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  10. OP
    Gaze

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    I was hoping to get a sense of the way women today would describe what it means to be a woman, from a personal perspective since each person will probably have different or unique perspectives, rather than assuming that we all think, feel, or understand things the same simply because we are women.
     
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  11. OP
    Gaze

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    What bugs me about expectations of woman today is that you're expected to be overtly and overly, confident to indicate that you're confident and capable. I see arrogance being used to convey intelligence and competence. Apparently, a truly confident woman walks around with a "don't mess with me" vibe. :p And if you seem too open or expressive or not very competitive; if you're too accommodating, you're probably not as competent or aware. Because if you really knew or understood how things were, you'd act like an arrogant know it all too. I mean, is this what we want confidence to look like?

    Just an opinion . . . feel free to counter :)
     
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    #11 Gaze, Oct 14, 2010
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  12. Soulful

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    I'm not sure if I can answer this. In short, I don't. I identify as a person. I struggle in identifying as a woman beyond knowing that I am biologically female. It's not that I don't want to define myself as such, it's just something I struggle with.
     
    #12 Soulful, Oct 14, 2010
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  13. Galileo

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    Great question.

    As for the answer I'm not quite sure, and I'm not even sure I really identify myself as a female in the feminist sort of way.

    I kind of think that just because women can now have a life full of career and advancement doesn't mean that the women who do should look down upon any women who stay at home and look after their children and have no higher aspirations than that. Women who think that women should be as unfeminine as possible also annoy me. people should just be what they want and not stop other people from being who they want to be either.

    I'm a feminist as much as I am in favour of equal rights for any group within society, gays, the disabled or whatever.

    That said, recently when I was in switzerland the last time I encountered a lot more sexism than I thought would be possible for a forward western nation, until I learnt that they only let women vote in 1995...My fiance is always so shocked when he sees women smoking, or when he sees them dres....provocatively? I'd say. However I just make a point of dressing up as much as possible on so and so he can get used to the idea and repeating that women are just as allowed to do whatever they want as men are.
     
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  14. Peppermint

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    In my culture, where conservative, chauvinistic and patriarchal values are the most prevalent, there is no such a thing as a "modern" woman, or a man. Not by any half sane standard anyway...

    It is largely depressing to be a female.
     
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    #14 Peppermint, Oct 14, 2010
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  15. InsEYEd

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    My idea of a "modern" woman..

    Obviously, the biggest difference between the old concept of a woman and the new concept of a woman is independence - women have completely entered the workforce. Personally, though, I view my work as part of what makes me an individual. As a woman, I still feel inclined to be taking care of others and birthing children. It is important to note that I do not feel this way because I am told to feel this way -- I have tried multiple lifestyles. Regardless of the fact that new and mixed genders are recognized in society today, I believe there is a role for the 100% woman. To be a true modern woman, in my opinion, is to be successful at work and still be a caring person, there for the family.
     
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  16. Nixie

    Nixie Resurrected

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    !!!

    I think that many times we tend to swing toward extremes rather than look at balance. I mean look at the June Cleaver type of woman that was idealized not too long ago--the happy homemaker who bakes cookies and wears pearls with perfectly coiffed hair and nail polish. I think we tend to want to smash conventions in order to achieve changes rather than embracing the true ideals of what being a woman means. I love to bake cookies but I will never be confused with a homemaker type of woman. I don't think that there is anything wrong with being confident or having a strong personality as a woman. The thing is that it is also okay to have the softer attributes as well. We want to grow and expand our ideas of what it means to be men and woman from the rigid definitions of the past but seem bent on throwing out the baby with the bath water. There were traits that weren't seen as womanly in the past--to have a career, to fulfill one's own needs, to be strong, to be independant--those are worthy things. I just don't think that those pursuits have to come at the expense of becoming more male or less female.

    *BTW, gives off Don't Mess with me Vibe* :)
     
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  17. barbad0s

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    I think that women have always had the ability to be strong and independant and all that. It's not really the personalities of men and women that have changed. The differences lie in an individual's cultural context when it comes to what traits they can afford to or have advantages/disadvantages to expressing, and how much pressure an individual feels to act in response to this. Like some people have mentioned, some women may feel that it is advantageous to exaggerate traits such as aggressiveness. Being a woman now where I live, I don't have to worry about my rights being in disparity with men's. One other thing that I think has had a significant impact on many women in developed countries that I can relate to is that there are a lot more methods people can use for enhancing their physical beauty or appearance, which weren't available before. I have some personal feelings towards the entire idea of females/feminineness, but that's by association with feelings of ambivalence towards my mother that I've had since childhood, and unrelated to the topic of "modern"ness, so that's the extent of what I can come up with just from off the top of my head.
     
  18. barbad0s

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    Oh hai @Ame

    I gave this some more thought while in the shower.

    I think that there will always be people who prefer traits found in more "traditional" roles, and people who prefer those traits from more "modern" roles. In general, people will always have their preferences and will impose them on others. For example, one person could tell a girl that girls are supposed to not talk, make sandwiches, be small, be demure, etc, in order to be successful. Another person could say that a girl won't get anywhere in the world unless they are assertive, speak their mind, thwart traditional gender roles, etc. Yet another person could think better of traits mixed from these two extremes, like saying girls should be talkative and opinionated, but also be industrious and efficient. People will have an idea of what their surrounding culture is like, then pick and choose their own subjective things that attract them and suggest them to others. This sort of concept has probably gone on since the beginning of human culture and cultural change. I think it's something modern women may feel more pushed and pulled around with, because of globalization and high-speed media and communications being available to mass populations. There are all sorts of opinions floating around nowadays, and I think it's easy to feel overwhelmed from it all.

    @Ame I would love to hear your thoughts on this, as well as those of all others.
     
  19. #@&5&49

    #@&5&49 Well-known member

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    Well this is a resurrected thread. I could spend more time thinking about this but off the top of my head I think the lines between men and women's roles have blurred considerably. My folks were raised in a time when men and women's roles were clearly defined. So I was raised with those roles, but then going through the radical sixties and the feminist movements of the seventies I had to adjust my perspective of being a woman.

    My life today has many more choices than my mother had, and her life had more choices than her mother. Just as my daughters have more choices than I had. I have a career that my mother could only dream of having and my grandmother wouldn't have even dared to dream about. Women today have to create a whole new identity to define being a woman. Lots of women fought for that freedom, fought really, really hard. Now our daughters and granddaughters are experiencing the freedom we so wanted for ourselves. In some ways I think it was easier in the past because roles were more clearly defined. Those roles were stifling at times but nonetheless clearly defined. Women didn't have to wonder, search for, and create something that didn't previously exist like they do today.

    Some would say it's better to be lost in the current confusion than it is to endure the limited roles of the past. I don't know. My generation is somewhere in between the past and the future. How nice it must be to have the freedom to ask yourself things like; do I want to stay home and raise my children, or would I rather have a career, or do I want to do both. Imagine what it was like when the only choice you had was to stay home and raise children and there were no other choices, and if you wanted something that was different you faced some serious consequences.

    Just as it must be nice for men to have the choice of staying home and raising children while their wife works. I've known several couples that have changed roles like this. Then we get into things like same sex marriages and an endless array of redefining all roles, not just women's roles. Ahh, the times they are a changin.
     
  20. tfg345i4u5lw

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    I'm a man but I have an opinion on this issue that I want to express. If you are only interested in women's perspectives then you don't have to read it.

    I think modern women have a complex. They feel too pressured to be independent and I think most of the pressure comes from other women. Just because the modern woman has the choice to be financially independent doesn't mean she has to be. Also non-independent women should not be viewed as inadequate by other women for choosing that lifestyle. I often see single women who run around boasting about their independence and how they don't need a man. Really, it's hella obvious that they want a man and are lonely.

    I recently had a conversation with my sister about this issue. I have been helping her apply for jobs because she just graduated college. She told me that some of her friends talk down to her a little because she is not independent. I think her friends that do that are stupid Americans.
     
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