Gender Association & Beverages

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We tend to use the technique of association and categorizing to make more sense of the people, places and things around us. Our thoughts and behaviors are refection of who we spend time with, what activities we engage in and where we come from. Gender association plays a curial role in creating identities.

I believe this is a cultural phenomenon which has developed through natural selection. A human body of a male and female maybe similar is a lot of ways but they are unique in a few. These unique features of male versus a female human body are factors that have caused a cultural segregation over the years. For instance, the levels of hormonal activities in a physical body of a female. These hormonal changes trigger behaviors that are uncommon in males due to their body composition. Due to this natural selection women maybe known to be more emotionally active than males.

As I scrolled through my phone, to find an image of a neutral objects, as long as it took I found one. An image of a cafe latte. It made me think about associations of food with people, places and gender. I was intrigued by beverages so I scrolled some more to find a “girly” drink I order at the bar the other day. A cafe latte is a drink that could be associated with any gender versus a cosmopolitan which is clearly gives a feminine vibe simply because it’s fruity and easier to drink than a “neat whiskey”. If a latte were to associated with a gender, it would probably also be considered as a feminine drink. The reason would be the sweetness to the drink caused by the milk to expresso ratio.

Gender associations are fair when it comes to making sense of the world around you. However, it is often accompanied by negative assumptions about a particular gender. I believe every man has a right to enjoy a fruity drink of their choice while every women can enjoy her cigar. As individuals, we must feel free to associate with the gender preferences of our choice.

When I encounter an individual with a confusing gender specific vibe, I take my time to acknowledge them. It’s important to understand who the are in their own space.

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7 thoughts on “Gender Association & Beverages

  1. I think this is an interesting example. Drinks seem to have more gender assigned to them (especially alcoholic drinks) than even food! I think a lot of it is also how certain drinks are advertised and you can see when a particular brand of drink is trying to attract a new consumer.

  2. Loved your post. This is an innovative topic, as it did ring some bells in my life when I am out having a meal. Some beverages do have strong associations with gender stereotypes, some has even become a “rule” for many social situations, to be more specific, alcohol. Especially in my country, male tend to drink a lot more than females. Even on a dinner table, men has to drink in order to show respect to others, sometimes even being forced. What’s more, if a guy has a drinking problem , it could be considered “understandable” or less of a big deal than a woman being an alcoholic. I am not sure about the statistical data on this one, but growing up, most people around me are thinking in this logic– which I find disturbing.

  3. I like your example of the drinks being attached to a gender. I hadn’t really thought of that perspective before, but you are right. You do tend to associate beer with men, cocktails with women, but wine and coffee seems to be that ambiguous “middle of the road” beverage! Next time I’m in a bar or restaurant, I will certainly be making some observations on this issue!

  4. I like your perspective idea about the example of the drinks related to genders. However, this is not actual for everyone. For example, I have many LGBT friends. Few feminine gay guys really love sweet cocktails and hate beers. I also have a best friend who is also lesbian tomboy. She loves beers and do not like any cocktails. It is very interesting about people who have different sexual identities of using different drinks. But for usual stereotypes, I do often see most of men drinking beers and most of women drinking cocktails. I am also a man who hates beer, but I love wines and cocktails. It does not mean that I have to be like every man doing like that.

  5. This is a sensitive area for me as I frequent cocktail bars quite a bit and I am female. I personally prefer drinks that are not bitter, simple enough. For the uninitiated this translates to, “Can I have something sweet to mask the taste of alcohol as I am but a fragile female.” (Please know I wrote that dripping in sarcasm) If you’re with a talented bartender they will take your request as a challenge to create something from the long list of flavor profiles that already exists. Pushing gender roles on a drink is just ludicrous. Historically, wine was sweetened with lead (Rome), beer was naturally fermented using wild yeast and fruit was added for sweetness (Belgian lambics), and sugar was something only the rich could experience. So this all begs to question, when did sweetness in drinks shift from something everyone enjoyed to being associated as ‘girly’.

    My rant is over for the most part, but I do have to ask, you stated that gender identities is a cultural phenomenon that evolved over time due to natural selection. You then touched on how this could have impact on why women are more emotional than men and what not. What I don’t understand is how this then ties in with your comment on drinks.

  6. You made such a good point in this discussion. I’ve never noticed how drinks can correspond to gender. Maybe it is a coincidence but I’d like to think it was done purposefully as you’ve suggested. I think initially drinks were just made and later certain genders flocked to certain drinks, therefore they have been known as certain gender popular. I believe men tend to like bitter drink because maybe it’s seen as tougher. Easier to drink beverages are more feminine.

  7. This is such a great post. My neighbor actually only drinks the fruity, “girly” drinks, and my wife and him rib him for it on occasion. It’s obviously just in good fun, but it’s amazing how that can actually be a point of contention in your life if you actually think about it.

    I think another good association would be the difference between drinking a black coffee and coffee with lots of cream/sugar. You rarely if ever see women drinking their coffee black, however the other way around is pretty universal.

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