Gender Norms : Male Dominant Body Language

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Violating Gendered Norms Gender norms are a set of rules or behaviors assigned to each gender by a culture or society. Men and women are expected to uphold these requirements, and are policed by their peers to make sure that they are maintaining them as well. I chose to violate and reflect upon the female gendered norm of using submissive poses while standing or sitting. Women tend to cross their legs while sitting in an attempt to take up less space and make their bodies smaller. Instead, I chose to sit, stand, and pose dominantly like most men tend to. My experiences and research revealed how in society women are expected to take up less space and be more submissive, while men are allowed to take up excess space and be dominant. In order to better understand what male dominant body language looked like, I did some research before testing it out on both strangers and friends. Dominance is generally displayed by making the body appear larger and taller than usual (Carney). Dominant body language is used by men because they, “feel the need to gain as much power and control as they can,” (Taylor). Standing upright, with the chin up and chest out, as well as placing the hands on the hips and the legs apart helps to create a more dominant pose. Some people also stand while others sit, or stand on a higher step to increase their height. Our book, Gendered Lives, discusses Kinesics, or face and body movements, and territoriality, otherwise known as personal space, and how they
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