Colour-coded society

Is there a gender difference in response to colour? 

When it comes to stereotypes about colours, it is hard to avoid talking about blue and pink and their association to a particular gender. Even if I do not share this opinion, society has already shaped the perceptions of youngsters. 

The fact that we face an obvious commercial drive to sell baby products using the colour blue for boys and pink for girls underlines that colour-coding starts even before a little human is born. 

While research confirms that girls tend to prefer and wear pink as well as blue, the same does not apply to boys. Developing equality between both genders starts from making every aspect of our lives equal, eliminating stereotypes which code future generations by making them believe that there is difference between genders when it comes to using the items of particular colour.  This may  lead to to homophobic and discriminatory perceptions of the other, and this is not something not difficult to imagine in our reality. 

Gender studies, which have become more and more popular, show that until the age of two, there is hardly any difference between boys and girls when it comes to their colour tastes. When questioned about their favourite colour, pink didn’t make it high on the list. So, how exactly did pink become a signifier for girlishness and femininity?

Firstly, the colour has been widely used for commercial products. Secondly, pink has never been as popular as it is today seeing that many feminist groups started raising awareness about gender equality using the same colour pink. These aspects led to a revival of the colour which is now praised more than ever. As a result we find ourselves chained by societal stereotypes, which promote the so-called “Colour-Coding”, requiring more time for the changes that we want to see in this world.

*Picture from “JeongMee Yoon: The Pink and Blue Project”.