Posted at 1:00 PM Apr 09, 2010
By Andrea Grimes
Behold, a culturally constructed gender stereotype is maintained: women love shopping because nobody even thought to ask men about shopping!
Per the NY Daily News:
"I think it would be more than three years," laughed Sandy Mahadeo, 20, a sales clerk from Richmond Hills, lugging a huge bag from Macy's. "I love everything about shopping." "She goes every day!" interrupted her fiancé, Nicholas Ragbir, 20, echoing the belief of many men who feel women spend way more time than that shopping. "It's crazy. When I go, I go to one spot and get everything. Women have to go to every store." The study, by global online market researcher OnePoll.com, surveyed 2,000 women about their shopping habits.
Ah, I love a self-fulfilling gender construction prophecy. This kind of not-even-pretending-to-be-science, and the gleeful reporting thereon, illustrates just how invested our society is in maintaining gender roles. Men could spend 30 years of their lives shopping, but we'd never know, because we already believe women love shopping, so why even ask dudes about shopping? (It also illustrates just how banal the NY Daily News is.)
Further, it looks like the poll actually did conduct some kind of vaguely interesting line of questioning about non-frivolous buying patterns, like grocery shopping, and gender, noting with one closing line: "It isn't just hunting for accessories or clothing that sucks so much time - each year, women spend nearly 95 hours shopping for groceries, the study showed."
Interesting conversation: do women shop for groceries more or less than men? What does this say about the home life and relationships? What about in terms of careers, child-rearing, etc., and the amount of time women spend maintaining and shopping for the home versus men? All of these would be enlightening, conversation-starting lines of inquiry. But studies (and media) like this can't be bothered, because addressing those questions is hard, and saying that women like shopping is easy.