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Gender Inequality: A complex problem/ Princeton Supplement


leiya0920 5 / 23 9  
Dec 26, 2014   #1
I am very unsure of how to tackle this prompt. Please check out my essay!

Using one of the themes below as a starting point, write about a person, event, or experience that helped you define one of your values or in some way changed how you approach the world: One of the great challenges of our time is that the disparities we face today have more complex causes and point less straightforwardly to solutions.

I'm walking down the street. It's still quite bright out, but for some reason I feel unsafe. In an unsuccessful attempt to protect myself from whatever danger that might be lurking, I hug my bag tightly.

But there's no way around catcalls.

"Looking good mama," a man hoots. "Pretty girl twirl for us," a group of young men cackle. Their words sting, but all I can do is bow my head in fear and helplessness.

Albeit what people believe, the issue of gender inequality is a storm that continues to rage unabated. Indeed it is as Princeton Professor Omar Wosow once said, "one of the great challenges of our time is that the disparities we face today have more complex causes and point less straightforwardly to solutions." The equation no longer is Give Women Rights=All Shall Be Well, because this pervasive problem is more than a matter giving equal rights. It's a matter of redefining this culture that acts as a breeding ground for sexism.

I, like many other women, have been made a victim of my own femaleness. I was verbally harassed on the street. My neighbour's daughter was taken out of school under the premise that "she needs to learn how to be a wife. If she doesn't know how to cook and clean, how can she get us dowry?" My little sister is afraid, at the young age of fourteen, of being alone, because her friend was physically harassed in a public park. It sometimes feels like the moment you come into the world with the wrong set of genitalia, you are doomed.

Though what I've been through is nothing compared to the ordeals other women suffer, it has opened my eyes to the bitter reality of the world I live in. Femininity is weakness, I was told. Femininity is subordinate to masculinity, I was taught. It's ingrained in our vocabulary, our thought processes, our decisions. It's fed to us by media, literature, popular culture. When I realized how much my own mind was saturated with denigrating and belittling images and messages-from the hyper virtuous to the lustful-I was horrified of the extent to which sexism had affected me without knowing.

These realizations and experiences have convinced me to take arm, to join the centuries long fight against this ever growing evil called Sexism. There is one thing that I know to be true in this world: that people make culture. That I have the power to influence how my culture treats women. I have taken my first step by participating in a club called "Girl's Time Out," which seeks to educate and empower young female students in my school and give them the push to promulgate this message of equality in their own communities. Though this is a small step, I believe in the long run, it will help to change the big picture of sexism. This problem may be complex in nature, but by acknowledging that we shape our culture and dictate the societal norms that are acceptable, various permutations of gender inequality can be tackled head on.
HelenKom - / 1 1  
Dec 26, 2014   #2
Great essay! I agree with most of its points. However, it doesn't look like you've answered the question. The prompt asks you to describe someone or something that changed you and your approach to life. So in this essay, you should probably talk about how seeing yourself and other people suffer from the injustice of gender inequality made you a feminist (?). Instead, you talk about the general definition of inequality, the examples of it, and your vision of solving this problem. Make it more about yourself and your own views! Maybe also mention your attitude towards inequality BEFORE realizing its importance, so that the admission officers can really track the transition you made. Tell us more about what exactly influenced you, and how you today are different from the you that didn't think about gender inequality.
OP leiya0920 5 / 23 9  
Dec 26, 2014   #3
Thank you so much! That's a good idea. To show how I transitioned to become the person I am today, as a result of the things I witnessed.
Ghfdw17 6 / 21  
Dec 26, 2014   #4
I love it. But maybe add a paragraph to what you hope to do in the future? I think if you tie this essay with career aspirations, goals, things you hope to achieve in the future it would be much more powerful.

Hope this helps :)
OP leiya0920 5 / 23 9  
Dec 27, 2014   #5
Thank you! I feel the essay would be too long if I add that. And plus, my future career has nothing to do with gender rights...Thank you once again!
Ghfdw17 6 / 21  
Dec 27, 2014   #6
In that case it works wonderfully.
Good luck :)
OP leiya0920 5 / 23 9  
Dec 27, 2014   #7
Thanks Ghfdw17! Good luck with everything you do!

I'd like to hear what vangiespen has to say about this piece though...
DinoRules 5 / 14 3  
Dec 27, 2014   #8
Your sense of feminism is quite praiseworthy and I like your idea of connecting your thoughts to things you have done, but this essay possibly falls into a generic pool of feminism writings. I have read many essays talking about women rights, and they all discuss the topic from pretty similar angles. While this is not wrong, chances are you essay may not stand out in the pool of PRINCETON we are talking about here. If you have read Leaning In, you may have more specific and insightful perspectives regarding this topic. If I were writing the essay, I would talk about how many women were verbally harrassed but didn't take it, although angry at it, seriously, or didn't realize grouping up can do more than simply avoiding being hurt. BTW, your writing style is excellent!


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