Challenging Masculinity is About Much More Than ‘Unloading This Junk’

(Published at XYOnline on August 14, 2010.)

A recent article called “5 Stupid, Unfair and Sexist Things Expected of Men” by Greta Christina raises the important questions of how “sexism hurts men” and why feminists and pro-feminists should care, and goes on to discuss five key examples. I agree that this is an important conversation that men should be having with each other and with people of different genders, and her examples, though I might have chosen different ones and would have talked about them differently, are definitely important. However, I think the article falls down to the extent that it frames the issue largely as individual men wrestling with “expectations.” It is more useful to see it as men who exist in specific social contexts struggling with norms that have material consequences far beyond how we as individuals listen to particular “cultural messages.”

Those two terms — “expectations” and “cultural messages” — are how the article describes what men struggle against. Such messages…

Read the rest at XYOnline.

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