Gender inequality, by definition, is the differences in status between men and women in society. It normally affects women more than men, because of their status in society. Many women are said to experience gender inequality within workplaces. This begs the question: why do gender inequalities exist? The most logical cause of gender inequality would be stereotypes. Men are pictured as being the quarterbacks, the breadwinners, needing to work to be able to support their family. On the other hand, however, women are pictured as the housewives, mothers and caretakers of the house. In modern society, the typical “housewife” ideals have changed. Ever since World War II, women are deciding to work and work, rather than stay at home, defying their stereotype. Even though during this time, women were encouraged to take the place of their men and work in the workforce, other factors kept them from working up the ladder, such as the wage-gap, responsibilities and the views of men on their roles in society, and sexual harassment; those of which enforce the promotion of unequal treatment due to the socially created norms that affect the workplace.
Tending gender equality,, there are an outstanding number of disadvantages that mainly transpire to women. Women that are in the workplace have many more disadvantages than men. One of them would be the wage-gap, as men consistently tend to receive a much higher pay than women, even though they share the same credentials and are equally qualified. The wage-gap has a great effect on the inequalities of gender in the workplace, mostly due to the stereotypical judgements people have about women working along their side. Men make a substantial amount more than women do, purely because of the gender that they represent. Women earn 78.3% of the amount that men do; even with similar qualifications and accolades, men earn a larger salary because of the ideals that men can do more than women (National Women’s Law Center). Because of the wage-gap, they are unable to dutifully complete their responsibilities, whether it is in the household, or personal expenses. With such a gap, their responsibilities or personal emotions/feelings could manifest as obstacles.
In the Wall Street Journal, several women were asked what as to what they considered to be the biggest obstacle in their careers. Many women claim that family issues hold them back from reaching upper levels. According to a recent study, 45% percent of women simply do not have a drive for higher positions, due to “discrimination, stereotyping, prejudice, family demands, and lack of opportunities” compared to the other “55%” (Emory, 2008″). In society, each gender is expected to have a certain role. In a family, women are usually expected to stay home and care for the children, as well as keeping the house clean and cooking for the working man. However, in the modern day, women play both roles, going out and doing work as well as taking care of the family. Women are mainly thought of being in the kitchen, and because of this it is very hard for men to picture them in a different light. “A woman’s primary attachment is to the family role,” Oakley says, “women are therefore less intrinsically committed to work than men and less likely to maintain a high level of knowledge” (Oakley, 1974; 28). Before women pushed for their equal rights of working, and having equal pay as men, this evidence goes onto explain the way that they lived as housewives and essential maids as people view them.
Many women are forced to deal with sexual harassments in the workplace. Sexual harassment is a big difficulty for women to succeed and proceed in the work force. A Huff Post article “The Huff Post poll found that one in five women said they’d been harassed by a boss, and one in four said they had been harassed by another co-worker. And although women were more likely than men to say that they had been victims of one or both types of sexual harassment, men also being sexually harassed- 6 percent said that they were harassed and 14 percent by a co-worker” (Huff Post 1). Women have to deal with not only with being suppressed and stereotyped, but sexual harassment as well. Because the harassment that these women face, they can rarely work at the same level as their male counterparts, as they stand above women, oppressing them and keeping them despite their supposed “equality”.
In conclusion, women in the workforce have always been oppressed and idealized different than men. They are payed extremely different compared to men, which keeps them from fulfilling their responsibilities to their maximum potential. Women are also viewed as housewives, and their family demands hold them back and keep them from acquiring higher positions. Finally, sexual harassment is a major factor in the oppressing and disparity that women face in the workplace. The fact that women are oppressed to the extent that they are is the reason that the world remains dormant and cannot progress the way it intends to.