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Disscusion - Essay Example

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Summary
Devor elaborates that children gain knowledge of their culture’s social descriptions of gender, and gender distinctiveness, during the same period they learn exactly what gender conducts are fitting for them. They develop impressions of themselves as exclusive persons whilst…
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Disscusion

A name given to these social misfits is ‘berdache’. According to Devor, the tension bound by the notion of ‘me’ and ‘I’ is called self and gender identity are at the core of the development of self (89).
Cofer, being both Puerto Rican and white says that, in her early years, she was referred to as blanca (white). She was lighter than her mother but darker than her father (61). Cofer narrates that while getting kicked out of a store, the storekeeper called her dirty brown, saying it was her natural color (67). She ran home to wash her hands with hot water and soap, and her skin remained the same color. Even though, the ‘I’ knew she was clean, the ‘Me’ part reminded her that she was the color of coffee with milk in it. She had big eyes, and a round face and she knew she was pretty, yet at Catholic school, the pretty white girls were especially the teachers’ favorites. The ‘I’ confided in her that she lived a well enough decent life with her parents. However, the ‘Me’ chided her about Ted’s father’s comments that, being Puerto Rican, they lived like rats.
The notion of ‘I’ should surpass that of ‘Me’ because society will never be pleased. It is somewhat like a gaping black hole that sucks out most of the good about an individual and leaves emptiness. In as much as society guides in shaping the general gender norms of individuals, it should not be given too much power. An individual knows himself/herself better than anyone else, and society will be more concerned about tearing apart the negative rather than building on the positive.
From Cofer’s story of her body, the issue of race and color is clearly evident, and she goes to great lengths to clarify the impact it had on her life while she was growing up. Many a times, she felt small and sorely inadequate, especially in sports and her ... Read More
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