Ablutions and gender.

Someone wrote…

Why is it that the location of bathrooms in public facilities (e.g. at the airport) are indicated not by an icon showing some kind of ablution, but by an icon showing a man and a woman (separated from each other)?

And following up, how did it come about that our ablutions got so strongly linked with gender that a symbol based on gender has become the most universal symbol we have for the location where we perform them?

If you could redesign the bathroom sign, how would it look?

And what are you thinking about gender right now?

Posted by on March 8th, 2009 at 08:00 am

Category: your voice 2 comments »

2 Responses to “Ablutions and gender.”

  1. moose

    Hey, just make ’em unisex and have a little diagram of a toilet… seems sensible… And thus shall never be done.


  2. fox

    hm, yeah, it’s silly, but it can be looked as positive also; in the end the ‘big’ difference between sexes is how/where we pee and poop… or something along those lines.

    On moose’s comment; making things unisex, that is something I’m for, but society in America at least makes that unrealistic.. for example, there’s a lot of “women’s only” gymes like Curves around here, and even the YMCA has a women’s only space. Some women aren’t even comfortable enough to work out in front of guys, or at least prefer not…? Can’t blame them too much though; they have their reasons.

    I sorta like the three bathroom that some places do; men’s, women’s, and ‘family’. But the stick figure men vs. dress must die; they’ve reached retirement age, off to florida they go.

    I want unisex bathing like they had in some ancient societies! \o/


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