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Questioning Gender

Questioning Gender
A Sociological Exploration

Fifth Edition

August 2023 | 520 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Questioning Gender: A Sociological Exploration aims to spark productive conversations and questions about gender and serve as a resource for exploring answers to many of those questions. Rather than providing definitive answers, this book aims to challenge students’ preconceptions about gender and demonstrate how gender as a system creates and reinforces inequality. Taking a global approach, author Robyn Ryle uses both historical and cross-cultural approaches to help students understand the socially constructed nature of gender. Through examining contemporary topics, including the #MeToo movement, sexual harassment in the workplace, and the gender wage gap, students will be prompted to think critically about past, present, and future gender-related issues.

The Fifth Edition has been updated with expanded coverage of disability as it relates to gender, discussion of issues related to transgender and nonbinary people, and examination of the COVID-19 pandemic's gender-related effects, as well as updated data throughout.

Part I What Are the Important Questions to Ask About Gender?
Chapter 1 What Is Gender and Why Should We Care About It? Introducing Gender
Chapter 2 What’s the “Sociology” in the Sociology of Gender? Understanding Sociology and Gender
Chapter 3 How Do Disciplines Outside Sociology Study Gender? Some Additional Theoretical Approaches
Part II How Are Our Lives Filled With Gender?
Chapter 4 How Do We Learn Gender? Gender and Socialization
Chapter 5 How Does Gender Matter for Whom We Want and Desire? The Gender of Sexuality
Chapter 6 How Does Gender Impact the People You Spend Your Time With? The Gender of Friendship and Dating
Chapter 7 How Does Gender Matter for How We Think About Our Bodies? The Gender of Bodies and Health
Part III How Is Gender an Important Part of the Way Our Society Works?
Chapter 8 How Does Gender Impact the People We Live Our Lives With? The Gender of Marriage and Families
Chapter 9 How Does Gender Affect the Type of Work We Do and the Rewards We Receive for Our Work? The Gender of Work
Chapter 10 How Does Gender Affect What You Watch, What You Read, and What You Play? The Gender of Media and Popular Culture
Chapter 11 How Does Gender Help Determine Who Has Power and Who Doesn’t? The Gender of Politics and Power


Instructor Resource Site
The online resources for your text are available via the password-protected Instructor Resource Site, which offers access to all text-specific resources, including a test bank and editable, chapter-specific PowerPoint® slides.

I've used all of the previous editions, and I like this text.

Dr Matthew Vos
Sociology, Covenant College
May 9, 2024
Key features
  • Expanded coverage across several chapters of disability as it relates to gender.
  • New coverage of issues related to transgender and nonbinary people, including discussion of thinking beyond the binary and updates on anti-transgender legislation.
  • Examination of gender-related issues resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • New tables summarizing gender-related research.
  • Updated data and research throughout.


  • global approach demonstrates the social construction of gender and the persistence of gender inequality around the world.
  • The perspectives of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and nonbinary individuals, as well as queer theory, are found throughout the book.
  • The growing scholarship on the study of men and masculinity is included.
  • Each chapter is filled with questions—starting with the chapter title itself—to promote active inquiry into the meaning and role of gender in our lives.
  • Cultural Artifact boxes push students to explore or further test the theories and concepts being discussed.
  • A Big Questions feature get students to apply concepts and theories, think about integrating concepts and ideas, and make connections between concepts, theories, and topics.
  • Gender Exercise feature encourages students to become active learners and to engage in social science research techniques.
  • Websites dedicated to addressing a variety of social problems related to gender are listed at the end of several chapters to provide a starting point for students interested in exploring social change.

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