Gender Identity in the TV series “All in the Family”

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GenderIdentity in the TV series “All in the Family”

GenderIdentity in the TV series “All in the Family”

“Allin the Family” is a television series that addresses socialproblems affecting families. Archie Bunker is represented as aconservative, immature, and irresponsible working class man without aclue on contemporary changes on the identity of gendered roles. Heuses racial epithets when referring to black people (Ghosh, 2013). Onthe other hand, Edith Bunker is a humble and kind wife full ofwisdom. Although she differs with her husband’s perceptions onsocial issues, the couple is deeply in love and understands eachother. Mike and Gloria represent the contemporary society wherecouples openly discuss their views and opinions on family issues(Staricek, 2011). The film highlights the cultural and socialpractices and roles associated with gender.

IfI discovered today that I am a woman, I will have a sense ofexcitement and anticipation to explore to satisfy my curiosity withthe new identity. I would love to experience the caring attitude andmultitasking aspects attributed to women. Even when under pressure toperform gendered roles, I would strive to do exactly what women areexpected to perform. However, I would not want to remain a female forlong since I am used being a man.

Afterwatching the film, I have discovered that women and wives shouldpractice humility and respect towards their husbands. On the otherhands, men must develop a free mind and attitude towards issues likefamily planning as manifested through Mike and Gloria who shareresponsibilities. I was never fascinated by Archie’s hatred andbigotry talks (Lear &amp Yorkin, 1971-9179). However, I have learnedto appreciate the cultures and beliefs of the setting and understandthat the film only presented the racial issues in the society.Initially, I believed women were lazy and often contributed todomestic problems and their husbands’ characters. Contrastingly, Ilearned that women undergo extreme emotional and physical abuse inmarriages to perform their gendered roles while humbly submitting totheir husbands as a sacrifice to maintain their relationship.

Ihave always considered domestic chores as lesser boring femininetasks. However, the experience as a woman opened my mind to realizethat even domestic duties like cleaning and cooking can be difficult,yet they contribute to the making of a healthy and happy family.Women are expected to handle contraceptive issues and nurturechildren, a chore men consider to be less economical as working toearn a living. Gendered roles affect even workplace where Gloria wasfired because she got pregnant. Employers fail to realize that menand women need to share family responsibilities since they have neverhad a chance to experience the gendered identity from the oppositesex. I would encourage men to take control of family issues likeundergoing vasectomy as a family planning method instead of expectingwomen only to use contraceptives that may have adverse side effects.

Initially,the role of the man was to provide for the family while women tookcare of the home. However, gendered roles have changed since the1950s as more women took up formal employment and collectively sharedfinancial responsibilities. In the past men never participated infamily planning but contemporary couples as Gloria and Mike discussthe best method to adopt. While Archie never allowed his wife toexpress her mind, Mike and Gloria openly share views and opinions,which classed with Archie’s perceptions. A desired change wouldrequire a man to consider women’s chores as important as formalemployment and help to alleviate family stress.


Ghosh,P. (6 Jan, 2013). Jean Stapleton Dies:How “All in the Family”permanently changed US television and Society. InternationalBusiness Times.Retrieved from

Lear,N.&amp Yorkin,B.. (Producer). (January 12, 1971&nbsp– April 8,1979). Allin the family[Television series]. Hollywood, CA: American Broadcasting Company.

Staricek,N. (2011). Today’s “modern” family: A textual analysis ofgender in domestic sitcom. Auburn University

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