Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Gender-Bend It

Hello again, my perhaps nonexistent audience.
I have come to the realization that my past two posts may have come off as a bit... female supremacy-ist. Now it's not like I'm against female supremacy, but I'd rather have equality of everything and everyone, than one group being "supreme" over everything else. I know it's an unachievable wish, due only to the competitive nature of Humans. It is a sad, pessimistic statement, but it is hard to deny. We will never settle for equality. Humans find ways to, quite randomly, pick groups that are superior for either their beliefs- religious, political or both, or for their physical appearance, and claim they are superior. But as the feminist, doe-eyed teenage girl/woman/female thing I am, I can dream.
So today I will be ranting about the fabulous topic of
Gender Roles.
A topic I love to rant about, but I feel brings either discomfort, or confusion to many people. I first started thinking more about gender roles, and what really distinguishes men from women, Aside from anatomy (Duh), in my literature class. I will admit here and now that I am not shy when it comes to vocalizing my opinion, especially on topics such as this one. I participated in the discussion quite enthusiastically, but I did feel that many of the other youngsters around me found the topic quite uncomfortable. Honestly, I don't care if you feel uncomfortable, I'm going to open up my mouth and talk. Or... fire up my fingers and type.
I feel so proud to live in a world where sexuality and the blurring of gender distinguishing is more accepted. Now it is not unusual to see a woman in pants, or in a suit. not is is uncommon to see women working in business  or as CEOs.  But people still have this... jesting unease with men filling more "feminine" roles. For instance, a stay-at-home dad is not as easily accepted as a stay-at-home mom. A woman staying home and letting her husband work is a common thing, as she is considered to be "devoting herself to family", while a man in the same position has beed criticized as being "weak" or "lazy" for not being the one "bringin' in the bacon". God forbid, a woman is the one supporting the household.   Same goes with clothing for men. Even though women are no longer confined to wearing only dresses and skirts, people will still double, or even triple take if they see a man walking down the street in a summer dress. What about a guy wearing makeup? Or some cute high heels? It is still considered much more bizarre and taboo then a woman without makeup in basketball shorts and kicks. 
This concept of masculinity and femininity is a very interesting one. Femininity has become this very broad spectrum (I'm not complaining...)- a woman doesn't have to be all frills and makeup and lolita dresses to be feminine. But masculinity is still a very narrow spectrum. Masculinity is...
football games, steaks,
beards and deep voices 
strong, muscular arms, and bravery. 
Masculinity is a hairy chest, luck with the ladies
and being able to handle alcohol. Women are praised for being strong, and brave, and good for them if they can hold their alcohol. But if a man is sensitive, he's a coward. If he's emotional, he's a crybaby. If he likes to cook and clean, and doesn't keep up with football, he's simply "not a man". These are not hunting and gathering times, when if you weren't brave, or thick-skinned you wouldn't be able to survive. It is such a travesty that if a man displays more feminine qualities he's dubbed either gay, or simply '"feminine", which in itself is (unfortunately) an insult to men. Don't get me wrong- I love the gays more than the gays love the gays, but I do feel that the fact that being called "gay" is still such an insult is a horrible thing, but that is a rant for another day. 
We have made such strides as a species, but still we're hindered by the belief that men are superior, and so the belief is 
why on earth would they want to surrender their masculinity, and display such signs of weakness (apparently the weaknesses in men are the exact archetypes for women- vulnerability, sensitivity, emotional expression...). The truth of the matter is this, people:
Men are human. Women are also human. We are all humans. Human have emotions, emotions are good. It is IMPOSSIBLE for a man to be perfectly masculine, because the definition of masculinity portrayed by society is one of unreasonably emotionless proportions.
I hate memes, but
overly manly man, anyone?

All this image and hype around the perfect masculine man only makes men who lack the traits of the overly manly man feel substandard and lame. So can we stop making them feel lame? Because it's lame. C'mon kids.

Au Revoir babes

No comments:

Post a Comment