Gender and Leisure

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Women who have the ability and desire to travel solo often feel as if they shouldn’t, as they are fearful of what may happen to them on these adventures. However, men do not have these same concerns and there isn’t a preconceived idea that men are in danger when travelling alone. In this essay the writer explores the idea that a woman’s ability to travel solo differs from a man’s and that there is a far greater level of acceptance of a man who wants to explore and travel solo than a woman. This gender inequality is not only seen in solo travelling but in many other areas of leisure however solo travel appears to be a good example of the disparity that occurs between the genders.

A woman travelling alone is becoming increasingly common in today’s society as women wish to seek independence and travel the world to gain a new perspective on different aspects of their lives. However, sadly women still have to cross many hurdles and limit themselves when travelling solo to feel as if they are safe. This many include things like restricting where they go or what people they are around and possibly going out less at night than what is desired (Wilson & Little, 2008). These boundaries make travelling solo less desirable. One of the main aspects of solo women’s travel that was an issue was the gazing, whether men in foreign countries were just curious of a women that looked different to what they were used to or whether they saw her as a sexual object it is hard to tell, either way it makes women feel uneasy (Wilson & Little, 2008). This perception of what men were thinking discourages women to push the boundaries and take themselves to their limits.

Society’s perceptions of solo women travelers are still ones of skepticism and often disbelief. As stated by Wilson and Little in 2008 women were often in awe of other women who were brave enough to travel solo as they themselves did not believe they could go through with it whereas men where more concerned for...
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