Gender refers to the socially constructed roles, activities and attributes that a particular society considers appropriate for men and women, explains the World Health Organization. The distinct roles, reinforced by legal systems and religion, have historically given rise to gender inequalities not only in health care but with education and employment opportunities. Globalization has challenged the most archaic perceptions of gender roles through books, films and other media; new technologies in satellite television and the internet; policies of multinational corporations and tourism. Human rights groups reach across borders to lend support and inspiration to those in other lands; the United Nations and other international target gender equality as a major goal.

Europe’s Old Boys Need to Make Way for Women

Women are still rare among top political or corporate leaders
Margot Wallström
June 9, 2008

Baby Bust!

Some governments intrude on family planning
Kerry Howley
June 18, 2008

Dutch Groups Launch Gay Marriage Manual

Publication aims to counter Vatican's fight against same-sex unions.
September 2, 2003

Lack of Women in Eastern Germany Feeds Neo-Nazis

Educated women flee communities with growing numbers of disgruntled young men
June 1, 2007

Closing the Culture Gap

Tips on how to get along with your other-culture lover
John Boudreau
July 18, 2003