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Gender Roles and the Venus de Willendorf

            Gender roles can be described as a collection of social and behavioral customs that are usually considered suitable for either of the gender in a social relationship or setting. There are observed differences in roles between the genders among societies across the various cultures. There are also many debates as to the influence of innate personality and its influence to the different gender roles. The same is debated on the influence due to cultural or social aspect, and possibly the product of socialization on various gender roles. It is also often debated that gender roles have been dictated by biological contributions in making up the differences in gender roles. Societies have transformed over the years, which has caused major and rapid changes in gender roles. Gender roles generally vary according to traditional-historical setting of the people. .
             From the changes from the Venus de Willendorf era, there is a sex/gender struggle in definition between female and feminine. Analyzing this from a male-dominated western culture perspective, the traditional Venus is both sexually and gender feminine. The woman was supposed to perform her role in the society and not just looking good. The reproductive aspect was more pronounced in a women and this provided ground for a healthier society. Going by the current understanding, while sex is genetic or a result of nature, gender is to be recognized as social, meaning it is the outcome of culture or nurture. The Venus of Willendorf is evidently physically female, but she is not feminine. .
             The name Venus imposes on her a gendered femaleness that she does not possess. Venus was used in the earlier generation to define the goddess and the depiction was that of beauty, tall, well-shaped body almost perfection in beauty. The overstated carvings of the Venus of Willendorf body parts reflect how the generation regarded women as symbols of productivity, progressive, fertility and wealth.

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