Issues of class, gender and identity have long been of interest in cultural studies. The concept of gender is considered a cultural difference, characteristically placed in opposition to the concept of sex, a biological difference. To understand gender it needs to be considered in a social context, as it is fundamental to the process of social classification. Masculinity and femininity are not necessarily innate, but are constructed culturally, and are often a variable performance. Gender has frequently been referred to as a learned act or behaviour and the family is considered by psychoanalytical theory to be a significant place for gender roles to be initiated. Exploring the boundaries of gender identity has played a long standing role in western culture across the class divide. This text will discuss how gender and identity were manifested in 18th Century society, contextualised through contemporary culture.