sex discrimination

(redirected from Sex Discrimination Laws)
Also found in: Medical, Legal.

sex discrimination

the practice whereby one sex is given preferential treatment over the other sex. In most societies this is observed as discrimination favouring men as against women.

In those societies characterized by patriarchal relations (see PATRIARCHY), women are systematically and routinely discriminated against in all areas of social life, that is, in both the PRIVATE AND PUBLIC SPHERES of social activity. Sexual discrimination is therefore institutionalized, and in this sense can be compared with racial discrimination. Sexist ideologies and discourses serve to reinforce such practices, thereby granting them legitimation and normalizing them. Importantly, sexual discrimination can be both implicit and explicit, overt and covert. Thus legislation designed to control discriminatory practices on the basis of sex differences, tends to be of limited effect, for example, the Sex Discrimination Act of 1975. Women in patriarchal societies are discriminated against in areas such as employment, political and religious office, housing and major areas of social policy, in relation to property and in both civil and criminal law. Women's position in the class structure, and other major social divisions such as age and race, may either reinforce or weaken the impact of sex discrimination. See also DUAL LABOUR MARKET, SEXUAL DIVISION OF LABOUR.

References in periodicals archive ?
Sponsored swim organiser Eileen Thomas, 59, said the 3Bs stood for bowling, badminton and bathing and the club was formed to get round the sex discrimination laws and allow a girls' only night at Stokesley swimming baths and other "ladies only" sport events.
Sex discrimination laws were a long way off in 1966
UK sex discrimination laws prohibit any less favourable treatment being shown towards employees and would-be employees by bosses, due to their sex.
The sex discrimination laws we study are limited to equal pay laws that prohibit pay discrimination.
Additionally companies risk falling foul of sex discrimination laws if they expect women to pick up any extra work.
The Equal Opportunities Commission says that, although 30 years have elapsed since the introduction of sex discrimination laws, women still face inequality in the workplace.
Postmodern theorists who have exposed the social construction of gender have been instrumental in expanding the scope of sex discrimination laws.
It was three times more probable that they would be asked at job interviews about plans for marriage and children than whites - in violation of sex discrimination laws.
The cars have been introduced to form a fleet of taxis for women only, which apparently does not contravene sex discrimination laws.
The same year employers advertising for staff in Welsh were told they could be in danger of breaking sex discrimination laws because Welsh, unlike the English language, has only masculine and feminine forms of job titles, like teacher, lawyer or even director.
Meanwhile, the Australian government plans to change its sex discrimination laws to allow male-only scholarships for would-be teachers with the hope that male teachers will help boys learn better, reports The Australian.