Sample Class: Social Construction: What Are the Benefits and Burdens?

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Originally published on June 18, 2020

Have you ever wondered about why stereotypes exist? Or what is behind how we think about women and how they are portrayed by laws and policies? Part of what is behind these questions is the concept of social construction: How society sees a certain group of people, and how those perceptions affect how you see social policies.

Schar School Associate Professor Bonnie Stabile walks us through how social constructions work, what it tells us about how we think about women, including an exploration of woman-driver memes and how Google image searches represent deep-seated assumptions about what a stereotypical woman or mother looks like.

Explore what we think motherhood is all about—from fertility to egg donation to traditional birth—and how what we think about motherhood affects how we legislate and create policies around women, contraception, birth, and motherhood.
—Christine German