Reading Response

Leland Bent

WGS 201F


Can Gender Equality be Solved at the Dinner Table?

Last week we discussed a section of the reading labeled as, ‘Gender, Globalization, and Food.’ The discussion went along with a reading from Nancy Worcester titled, Nourishing Ourselves. I never saw the irony in the fact that women around the world are the food producers, and the fact that they are providing prohibits them from getting their nutritional needs. I knew that on average men eat more than women, but I did not know that women actually need more nutrition in their daily diet than men in the aspects of specific requirements such as iron and calcium.

Being from the United States, I am aware that there are many issues concerning the malnutrition of women, but other than social pressures I do not see why women would be lacking the nutrition they need. This is where Worcester’s idea of bringing in the term internalized sexism clears this up for me. She makes the statement that, “It is women, not men, who are unequally distributing food within the family, giving men and boys more than their share of what is available for the household” (352). I have seen this my entire life in many different families and thought of it as natural. The females of the house would prepare meals, and then they would dish out the majority to the males, leaving them with essentially what is left.  Women are essentially putting themselves behind the importance of the men being fed first, most of the times without knowing it.

While internalized sexism is playing a role in women not giving themselves enough food because they believe themselves to be inferior when it comes to consuming the available food, Worcester points out a term that a psychiatrist by the name of Hilde Bruch calls, “thin fat people.” This is what I expected to be the cause of malnutrition of women, especially as they are developing under social pressure to look ‘good.’ These are people who, “Eat less then their bodies require in order to stay at a weight which is artificially low” (353). In a young women’s life, the most nutritional needs are from the ages of eleven to fourteen, which is also one of life’s most crucial times for educational decisions that will shape the rest of that women’s life. Seeing as cognitive development is equally dependent on both intellectual components as well as nutritional components, this is one of the worst times for a woman to be experiencing malnutrition.

Worcester has shown me that social and economic factors can work together in a negative sense for women in getting the nutrition that they need. When you have conscious decisions such as trying to look fit working with unconscious decisions such as the mother of the house giving the males more food, this will only spiral downward into future generations. If women are kept from growing intellectually as a result from growing properly in a nutritional physical state, then how will they break other barriers such as closing the gender pay gap between men and women in the work world. These women need to have a fair chance to become all that they can be in order to be as efficient as they need to be in society. These young women need to have less pressure to look ‘good,’ as not to become these ‘thin fat people,’ and rather get all the nutrients they need to grow properly.

While I this reading response has looked upon issues that are more prevalent in countries such as the United States and other first world countries, the reading does point out how no matter what world wide men get the feeding priority. Whether is be in Arabic Islam where girls are breastfed for a year to a year and a half less than boys, or in extreme cases such as in Kashmir where girls are breastfed for only months while boys can be breastfed for a few years. There needs to be a new look on the way we prioritize the feeding of our youth. Whether this be through new education on the importance of nutrition for women, or whether there is a different approach on trying to portray how men do not need to vast amounts of extra nutrition that they are given, there needs to be a change in nourishing women. This problem could lead to fix other issues such as women’s role in society as a whole, when the playing fields are leveled and everyone can consume the same.

Discussion Questions

  • Did you see how something as ‘internalized sexism’ is causing this problem in households where women are creating themselves to be inferior before reading this?
  • What other issues do you think could be resolved in the sense of gender equality if the feeding priority was taken care of?

Works Cited

Worcester, Nancy. “Nourishing Ourselves.” An Introduction to Women’s Studies:

Gender in a Transnational World. Ed. Inderpal Grewal, Caren, Kaplan. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2006. 348-355. Print.

Annotated Bibliography

Leland Bent

WGS 201

Annotated Bibliography

My annotated bibliography focuses on the gender pay gap, and more specifically the male-female income difference and the male-female difference in acquiring a job. What initially piqued my interest about this topic is that I am a business major and I am interested in the statistics behind this and how dramatic this gap truly is. Another reason why I am interested is because where I worked this summer I worked with almost all women in a professional environment, including my boss and the director of the department.

I find this to be a very relevant topic per our class discussions. The reason being that this class deals with inequalities that are present in our culture, as well as others. The sources that I have found all deal with statistical evidence, as well as other insight as to why one gender is not compensated as well as another gender due to reasons that are out of one’s control. What I found that was most interesting from my research was that women on average are accepting of their wage, and do not make personal attempts to report their lesser pay. After doing this research I feel as if I am brought to light how prevalent this pay gap is, and how there may not be an easy fix for it.

Davison, H. “The Paradox Of The Contented Female Worker: Why Are Women Satisfied

With Lower Pay?. “Employee Responsibilities & Rights Journal 26.3 (2014): 195-216. Business Source Premier. Web. 24 Oct. 2014.

In this article, Kristl Davison talks about how women are aware that there is a gender wage gap, but as individuals they do not report dissatisfaction with their pay. There are two main purposes of this article: to investigate the nature and causes of pay satisfaction, and to provide insight for the reasons of the acceptance of this paradox dealing with underpayment. Initially the part of this article that could be biased was that possibility for addressing how women determine how much they deserve was by looking at how on average the women were younger and had less experience than men, but the article goes to touch on the limitations of this model seeing as they were looking at traditionally male sex-type jobs. The article concludes on how it is true that women on an individual scale are satisfied enough with their pay not to bring it to attention on an individual scale. This is not to say that women are ok with the pay gap, but rather on average they do not say anything about it being changed within their own lives.

Joshi, Heather, and Pierella Paci. Unequal Pay for Women and Men: Evidence from the

British Birth Cohort Studies. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press, 1998. Print.

In this book, Heather Joshi and Pierella Paci take a look at how men play the role of authority in the work place socially and economically which in turn values them more, and why this gap in value and pay matters. They argue that there is nothing that can be done to change this gap in the sense of job training, child care, and other factors that can tighten this gap while markets give men more legitimacy in the business world. There is a wide array of data in the book ranging between studies conducted from 1978 to 1991, collecting an extensive amount of information of relative wages between men and women of Britain. The book depicts how this gap is a problem with evidence to back it up, but it focuses a lot on Britain in particular and this data may be different if collected at a more recent time.

“The Wage Gap, State by State.” National Women’s Law Center. N.p., n.d. Web. 23

Oct. 2014.

This website shows what women make for every dollar men make state by state in America, which is a ratio of female and male annual median earnings for full time, year round workers. Even though for the most part these are raw statistics, there is an article at the top which does touch on how families are depending on women’s wages more than ever, and how this gap is prevalent across the United States and differs state by state. There is also another good tool with this site that can filter to only show African American women, and Latinas. The only shortfall here is there is no tool to just see the raw data for white women; there is just an overall option. If you look at the data, you will find that Louisiana has the greatest pay gap on average, women making $0.659 cents on the dollar compared to men, and California having the lowest pay gap where women are making $0.839 cents on the dollar.

Feeling Reflective

Today I am feeling reflective. As I sit on my chair, I do not feel the need to get up quick, nor do I feel the need to look at others getting up. Rather I just want to sit here and think about what will be in the future, and what will be to come. I cannot control what I have done up to this point. What will be going on later? Will I want to par take in what is going on, or will I want to make my own activity? Will I need to be with others, or do I take my time later to better myself. It is hard to determine what is more important, having fun in the time and place you are in, or whether or not you need to be constantly preparing for what is to come, when no one can actually tell what will be.

I’d recommend that all my followers give this a listen…it always seems to help me 🙂


As I am on my way to class today, I realize just how lucky I am to be on such an incredibly beautiful campus and how amazing it is to have such beautiful friends. Although the cold may be coming with winter, it will not slow me down. I know now that I need worry about directions such as left or right…just have to keep moving forward.

What am I thankful for?

As I lie in my bed this Tuesday evening, I cannot help but to reminisce on the good times I have had since beginning my time at Miami. So… I would like to take this opportunity to thank those who have helped to enrich my college experience.  To my cat, Stewart – thanks for always waiting in my room for me to come home.  I would have had some lonely nights without you.  Luckily, I don’t mind the smell of your kitty litter. 🙂  To my girlfriend, Margaret – I don’t know where I would be without your endless support.  The late nights of watching Frozen and eating Orange Leaf truly got me through the dark times.  Also, what would I do without our Celine Dion karaoke nights?! Woo!  🙂  Finally, to the brothers of Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity – there are no words. But…can’t forget about ‘Tini Tues’!! 🙂

About Me.

I like to have fun and I love to laugh.  I am a very outgoing individual, you will never have a dull moment with me.  Some say you can look into my bright green eyes for days.  There is more to me than just working out, I enjoy writing poetry and painting pottery.  I also enjoy spending time with my cat, Stewart.  On the weekends I often go horseback-riding on my stallion Vincenzo, who currently resides in the Miami stables. I am always looking to make new friends. 🙂

Introduction WGS 201

Hello, everyone.

My name is Leland Bent and I am a senior at Miami University. I am a finance major from Cleveland, Ohio. I went to Gilmour Academy in Gates Mills, Ohio for high school.

Currently, I am the risk management advisor for Phi Kappa Psi. As a freshman, I was involved in many different activities on campus. As I have progressed through my college experience, I have tried to focus in on my involvement to make it more meaningful.

I was born in Willoughby, Ohio, which is a suburb of Cleveland. I have lived there for my entire life with my parents and younger brother, Grant (age 17). I am a huge Cleveland sports fan, specifically of the Browns. My personal interests include playing sports such as football and lacrosse, which I played in high school, working out, and interacting socially with my piers.

My Style

When considering my style/voice, I would have to say it does change a little bit for my audience.  This isn’t to say that I have different voices, because for the most part it is the same.  I would only change it if I were talking to a totally different audience, such as younger children, or if I were talking to my friends personally.  So when I say it changes a little bit I guess I am also saying that it is important to keep your style/voice, but change it slightly according to your audience.  The reason that it is important to keep your style/voice consistent is because it is your voice, which means it is true.  Your voice can determine who you are to your audience, and to totally change it would be to change who you are to your audience.  Learning about rhetoric has taught this to me in the sense that you need to have your strong and true voice, but change it a little according to who you are trying to appeal to.  Whether it is research, an advertisement, etc, you need to get your message across using your own style, but in a way that touches the audience or works for them the most.

Brain Storming

When I write I tend to stay in my room, because there I feel most myself and can focus my thoughts.  It seems through out my whole life when I have the choice I go to my room.

I usually write at night time, something about it makes me focus more.  In the day time I find my thoughts wondering more, and I am more distracted.  I can do other methods of school work in the day such as math because they are concrete answers.  Something like writing I need to be more focused.

I usually begin writing by thinking of a thesis idea and then finding a way to portray that, with my thesis statement.  Then I like to let my ideas flow out in a rough draft in a long time sitting, I don’t like to span my writing out over time in many different little sections.  The reason for this is because my thoughts become choppy, so my paper will.  I end my writing by reading over my whole paper, and writing down an appropriate ending that flows well with the paper.

My example of a good writing assignment and a bad writing assignment are the same example.  This year on the inquiry III research paper I started out very bad.  I hated it because I was just looking up information and had no idea how to portray that in a sense that could be persuasive.  Then I found out as I found my facts I could align them in a way that sounded appealing and I took a new approach to how I was writing my paper.  By the end of the paper I felt as if I took different sets of data, and turned them into a persuasive message.

When I get writers block, I usually just handle it by leaving my paper for a few minutes, or possibly hours, and coming back to it with a new and fresh head.  This allows me to come back at the paper with some new ideas that form when going over what I wrote, which leaves room for new ideas to arise.

The way I find an interesting angle in assigned topics is to choose something to write about that I have some interest in.  For example, the research paper I did not like the topic, but I chose something good to write about to me which was childhood obesity because it pertains to my life in a few different ways.

My strengths as a writer I believe are to fully put forward my message.  I believe that there is a clear message in the papers that I produce, with a good conclusion to wrap up my thesis.  Also, I try to take a different approach to what I write and not make it seem like one is reading out of a text book, I like to make my papers fluent and interesting.

One assignment I struggled with this semester was the PSA’s.  I never used Mac before this year, and I really don’t know why I decided to get one.  It took me forever to become comfortable using iMovie.  I felt as if although I struggled with the process of it, my end result was put together in an affective and moving way.

My writing process has changed in the fact that I look at things with more of a rhetorical appeal now.  Even when I watch commercials, I am seeing what use of rhetoric was put forth.  I write now around the three rhetorical appeals (ethos, pathos, logos).  Before I tended to write papers in a book report type form, and now I seem to take a different approach to appeal to my audience more affectively.