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Food Work in the Family and Gender Aspects of Food Choice Essay

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Updated: Apr 11th, 2022

In contemporary society distribution of the work about the house remains traditional “Family food work is highly asymmetrical; women almost always do the majority (or all) of the work” (“Food Work in the Family9). Things have not changed a lot. The previous lessons reveal the main ideas of that distribution and add some additional information about the appreciated appearance of a man and a woman, the way people take it and how society influences the determination criteria of being a good man or a woman. Social appreciation of a slim woman leads to some obvious results “52% of girls begin dieting before age 14” (“Women, Food, and Body Image” p. 19). Women became obsessed with the idea of being thin which was enforced by society. Similar processes occur to men. However, they are more concerned about the notion which “is said to be the ‘masculine ideal’” (Newcombe, McCarthy, Cronin and McCarthy 392). Society has strict demands for men, offering special patterns of behavior which prohibit such things as dieting, health food and some other notions. This fact results in rising level of mens problems with health, however media still continues talking about these ideals.

Having analyzed the information given, it is possible to come to certain conclusions. First of all it deals with the allocation of the food work. Facts show that women “perceive their disproportionate contribution to foodwork and other household work as fair” (Beagan, Chapman, D’Sylva and Bassett 655). There are several reasons for such belief, such as lower paid working hours, presence of a free time and traditional recognition of the work about the house as womans work. There are, however some mens attempts to share this duties with women but they are also of doubtful nature as usually woman is this person “who keeps an entire plan in mind” (DeVault 139) and it is difficult for man to understand her. Moreover, she chooses to cook herself as she can control the dishes and prepare something especially for her. It can be the part of her diet, as usually women are dissatisfied with their bodies, no matter how old they are and they have to keep to a diet (Paquette and Raine 1047). Things go easier with men as they just eat everything and if they cook, they prefer to make dishes not taking into account tastes of the family or some other aspects of the food. They just make dishes which are nutritious and correspond with the idea of masculinity.

Having obtained a lot of information about the issue of the work distribution in a family and gender aspects which predetermine a food choice, it is possible to understand the main idea which is appreciated in society and how people try to follow it. Being a part of contemporary society, men and women are affected by mass media which creates some ideal image of a man and a woman. They are not able to ignore it. That is why women prefer to eat healthier and low-cal food in order to have a slim figure. This fact also makes them cook, as they believe they would create more useful food. Men however, choose some harmful products in order to underline their masculinity and studied indifference to questions connected with their health. This influence their number of deaths and life length. However, even these two notions are the part of the masculine ideal which man try to follow. Our society influences greatly the choice of the food we eat.

Works Cited

Beagan, Brenda, Gwen Chapman, Andrea D’Sylva and B. Raewyn Bassett. “It’s Just Easier for Me to Do It: Rationalizing the Family Division of Foodwork”. Sociology 42.4 (2008): 653-671. Print.

DeVault, Marjorie. “Conflict and deference”. Feeding the Family: The Social Organization of Caring as Gendered Work. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, pp.138-163.. Print

Food Work in the Family. 2014.

Newcombe, Mark, Mary McCarthy, James Cronin and Sinead N. McCarthy. “‘Eat like a man’. A social constructionist analysis of the role of food in men’s lives” Appetite. 59(2012): 391-398. Print.

Paquette, Marie-Claude and Kim Raine. “Sociocultural context of women’s body image”. Social Science and Medicine. 59.5 (2004): 1047-1058. Print.

Women, Food, and Body Image. 2014.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "Food Work in the Family and Gender Aspects of Food Choice." April 11, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/food-work-in-the-family-and-gender-aspects-of-food-choice/.

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