Bird on a Bare Branch

Attempting to fling a frail song in my little corner of the world

Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better May 20, 2009

Filed under: Teaching — Jen @ 6:49 pm

Last week in class, my students were discussing the roles of men and women in small groups.  One of the questions asked:  “What do you think men do better than women?  Women do better than men?”  Two groups presented their responses to this question:

Group 1: Women are better at looking after children.  Men don’t have the time.  Women are worried about looking good, and so they are more organized.  If you walk down the street you will see all the women looking good, but the men don’t look good.  It’s because women are more organized in terms of hygiene.  Women have better homes.  If a woman lives alone, her house will always be nice and organized.  If a man lives alone, you can often find a mess and things in many different places.  Women are also not hard-hearted.  They feel pity.

Men are better at choosing friendships.  They know how to deal with friendships.  For example if you see a group of five girlfriends, you will see that it won’t last even a year because there is so much gossip.  But this is not notable for guys.  Men are more creative than women.  For example, many theories have been invented by men.  Anyone knows six female scientists?  Men can do heavier jobs.  Women do simple jobs.  Men are not as sensitive as women – it is hard to convince men to do something wrong, but it is very easy to convince a woman.  Men are more courageous than women.  Women are courageous on useless aspects, like killing someone, but men are courageous in how to explore the world.

Group 2: Men are better at security.  For example, men are guards and the majority of soldiers are men.  The majority of monuments are of men.  Men have more courage.  They fought against the communists and are our earliest heroes.  Men can hunt, like in the jungle.  Women see a snake and jump.  Men can do strong jobs.  They can carry big logs.  Women carry 20kgs of water but men carry three sacks of sugar.  Men run faster.  Even if you took that man from Jamaica against Lourdes Matola – they are both fast, but the man can still run faster than Lourdes Matola.  Men have more of a spirit of leadership.  In the past, few women were leaders.

Women are better at taking care of children.  They are more caring.  That’s why in a separation, the judge will say that the children should stay with the mother.  They are good householders.  And they are more romantic.


2 Responses to “Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better”

  1. davyellen17 Says:

    I am kind of fascinated here. Their observations are so relevant. I would be curious to hear who led the groups, men or women? Who did the majority of the talking? I really know nothing of gender roles in Moz… so I am interested.

    Miss you,


  2. Jen Says:

    The class it made up of 39 men and five women! What was interesting is that a lot of the class disagreed with these statements, but it was men speaking up! None of the women voiced an opinion. The points people disagreed with were men doing heavier work and men being heroes. A lot of people pointed out that women do heavy work here because they’re the ones in the fields, which I was quite proud of them for noticing because that’s what my comment would have been. Someone also mentioned the names of female heroes. Good to know I’ve got some feminist thinkers in the group!

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