Biological approach to gender (Genes and Hormones and the Evolutionary approach)

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1. What is the David Reimer case study?

  • Chromosomal male (Bruce) suffered a botched circumcision and was raised a female (Brenda) before re-assigning himself back to male after puberty
  • Chromosomal female (Brenda) was raised as a male due to ambiguous genitals.
  • David Reimer studied a psychologist, Dr Money.
  • David Reimer was assigned the female gender after being born chromosomally male and the case was successful, with David remaining female.
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2. What is the tend and befriend theory?

  • Suggests that women are better with relationships and cope in an emotional way in stressful situations
  • Suggests men act more emotionally than women when under stress.
  • Suggests that men are better with relationships and cope in an emotional way in stressful situations
  • Proposes that both genders use "tend and befriend" when under stress

3. Give one A01 point that explains the evolutionary approach to gender development in terms of division of labour.

  • Division of labour developed to ensure survival in the EEA because if a woman was pregnant she would be physically unable to hunt- therefore the man would have to and different gender roles developed.
  • Division of labour made no impact on survival rates - neanderthals survived despite division of labour not existing between them.
  • Division of labour did not exist in the EEA and was a more recent social idea that developed due to sexist beliefs.
  • Division of labour made no impact on survival rates.

4. Give one A01 approach to the role of genes and hormones in gender development in females.

  • The absence of testosterone causes oestrogen to be produced and puberty to be triggered.
  • Without the Y chromosome the testes do not develop and instead ovaries do, which produce oestrogen and stimulate puberty in females.
  • Testosterone triggers puberty in females.
  • Quadagno found that female monkeys exposed to testosterone were more aggressive

5. What did Reiner and Gearheart (2004) study?

  • The Batista family
  • Chromosomal males born with no penis (found that of 14 raised female, half re-assigned themselves by puberty)
  • Girls born with CAH (exposed to testosterone) showed little difference in gender to a control group of non CAH girls.
  • Bananas


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