‘We are living in a time of gender revolution.” Is the first line stated by Suzanne Tick. The gender revolution can be defined as a time when people do not just identify with one gender anymore. The traditional roles of males and females are no longer the same anymore. Tick said “Masculine and feminine definitions are being switched and obscured. But this is an essentially human phenomenon” Human tastes change over time and most of them repeat. The first indication is through fashion. In this example, clothes considered to be stylish for women look boyish and items normally intended for women are being catered for the men. Boys are looking like girls. Girls are looking like boys. These are things Tick notices. She claims that designers of landscapes, buildings, and architecture should keep up with this movement too. It would benefit society if designers created spaces that cater to this new ideology and promote acceptance of it in the process.
In order to make things more comfortable for the “different” ones of today’s society, companies and schools are starting to accept the concept of not asking for gender identification. People in the past are starting to ask for this privilege. Different organizations like the LGBTQ rights movement have sought out to make concepts like same-sex marriage more acceptable by lobbying in state and national courts. Nowadays people have been wanting softer elements in public and private places like open floor plans, emphasis on textural materials, and the influence of hospitality. In the workplace, people want views, big windows, and natural light. Tick suggest that this trend is happening because women are become more prominent in making critical decisions. Historically, males were dominant in all these areas, therefore; they made most of the decisions while not taking into account what kind of work environment could work for everyone. Tick pushes the idea that designers should look into incorporating more details that are gender sensitive. Tick believes that it would be better for society if designers created spaces that didn’t tend more to any particular gender. Embracing this idea will makes spaces more populated and loved by the people. An example Tick gives that designers can pay attention to is bathrooms in public places and workplaces. She states that big companies like Google are adapting gender-neutral bathrooms to allow less incidents of gender identification. This allows coworkers to have less uncomfortable issues and able to collaborate better as a team.
Tick states that designers shouldn’t treat this problem with just regulations and compliance. An example of this disaster would be the Disabilities Act. Regulations are there however, it is still difficult for disabled persons to find accessible bathrooms and entryways in public areas. Tick says this problem has to be dealt in a much better way in order to reduce the feeling of rejection and frustration for the “different” ones. Tick states being respectful of diversity and creating environments where people can express their individuality openly, equally, and safely is the best way to deal with this issue. It starts with the designers. For a solution, Tick final words could be that “We are only at the very beginning with gender-neutral design, but having safe places for anybody to function and do what they need to do, no matter who they are, should be our first step.”
Sources used –
Tick, Suzanne. “His & Hers: Designing for a Post-Gender Society.” Metropolis. Network Solutions, LLC., 16 Oct. 2012. Web. 16 Feb. 2016