Biological Explanations of Gender

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  • Biological Explanations of Gender
    • Typical Sex Chromosome Patterns
      • The human body contains 23 pairs of chromosomes. Each pair carries genes that control different characteristics. Biological sex is determined by the 23rd chromosome pair.
        • XX - female. XY - male.
    • Atypical Sex Chromosome Patterns
      • Klinefelter's Syndrome, XXY:            Caused by an extra X chromosome. Biological male with appearance of a male however less body hair; undeveloped genitals; long legs in relation to torso; infertile. Affects between 1 in 500-1000 males. Psychological effects include poor language skills affecting reading ability and passive temperament.
      • Turner's Syndrome, XO: Caused by absence of X chromosome. Biological female, with appearance of female, however ovaries fail to develop; short, squat body with webbed neck. Affects 1 in 2500 females. Psychological effects include higher than average reading ability; lower than average spatial ability, visual memory and math skills; difficulty in social adjustment.
    • Studies
      • Money and Erhardt (1972) - Bruce
        • AIM: Reassigned   sex of child to see if he could be successfully socialised as a female. METHOD: Boy accidently castrated as a baby, Money advised gender reassignment and treat him as a girl. However he reversed his earlier plastic surgery to become male and got married to a woman.
        • RESULTS: Initially Money reported the case a success, and took this as evidence for his theory of neutrality. However later revelations suggests that it was not successful. CONclusion: Biological influences ore important than socialisation, being treated as a girl did not affect Bruce's male identity.
    • Hormonal Influences

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