Over time, the thought patterns of many individuals mould to believe only one perception of what is morally acceptable— a perception that is completely faulty. The ideology of the male body and demeanor is only one of the many societal norms constructed by the media, and it alone can result in mental health fatalities, mass violence, or the mere elimination of self-identity whilst attempting to meet the ever-changing ideals of masculinity. The continuous and stereotypical depiction of masculinity in the media has idealized invulnerability, toughness and physical strength as the sole qualities of a ‘true man’. As a result, the complexity of masculinity is flattened, and immense pressures are placed on individuals to meet requirements that are entirely faulty. According to Katz, cultures, topics, and even genders are not one-dimensional; in order to fully comprehend the meaning the entirety of something, one must look at more than its representation in the media.
Jackson Katz’s film Tough Guise 2 seeks to expose how the media promotes a toxic ideology behind what makes a man masculine and show that it is a social construct. For decades print, television, videogames, and film have presented masculinity in a way that makes men think the only way to be manly is to be emotionally unavailable, sexually aggressive, and violent. This ideology has been a curse on culture in America and many other countries around the world. “We're not living in the Wild West. We're not a Third World nation” (Katz). The days of warrior culture, where a man had to protect his family from being pillaged in the dead of night, are long past us. However, the media promotes an ideology that men must still be prepared to answer the
Rather than a single standard of masculinity to which all men and boys are taught to aspire to, studies have documented a variety of masculinity that define manhood differently across racial , ethnic, class, sexual , and regional boundaries.(Kathleen Blee) In this quote the author states that due to intersectional differences, different racial groups of men might have different definitions on what it means to be masculine and what it means to perform masculinity. Gender roles are also modified by life experiences over time across racial groups. In the next images I presented are all images of my guy friends and cousins. More specifically they are all images of African American males in my life choosing to participate in gender and masculinity.
Masculinity is a cultural standard and guise that boys and men often follow to fit into the social expectations and hide their vulnerability. Media is one of the most powerful influences on the way boys perceive and learn the social norms connected with manhood. Boys/men adopt the “tough guise” as a persona to portray themselves as powerful, tough, strong and in control because our society has linked masculinity with these characteristics. From a young age, boys learn about what it means to be a “real man” and the consequences that come with not qualifying as one. The media and pop culture often depict violence as a masculine cultural norm and has led to a growing increase in violence, especially across racial and class lines like African Americans
When we talk about masculinity in America today we theorize that violence that happens more often than we like, from mass shootings or crime in general, including rape and murders in the real world and in the virtual thrill world of videogames and movies we find a parallel connection of masculinity as violent. Even though an overwhelming majority of violence is committed by men and boys we as americans rarely connect gender as a major key in violence. But when we lay out the plane lines about culture of violence were almost always hinting that it is a masculine trait that is a taught behavior. The modern society has conjured up the idea of the ideal man, that showing emotions is wrong but one must be charming, seeming smartish but more of an attitude of control showing that manhood has a hierarchy. Weakening the not so tough guy, society giving them labels to show they are outside of the gender binary.
Literary analysis America’s war heroes all have the same stories to tell but different tales. Prescribed with the same coloring page to fill in, and use their methods and colors to bring the image to life. This is the writing style and tactic used by Tim O’Brien in his novel, “The Things They Carried”. Steven Kaplan’s short story criticism, The Undying Certainty of the Narrator in Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried, provides the audience with an understanding of O’Brien’s techniques used to share “true war” stories of the Vietnam War. Kaplan explains the multitude of stories shared in each of the individual characters, narration and concepts derived from their personal experiences while serving active combat duty during the Vietnam War,
Readers, especially those reading historical fiction, always crave to find believable stories and realistic characters. Tim O’Brien gives them this in “The Things They Carried.” Like war, people and their stories are often complex. This novel is a collection stories that include these complex characters and their in depth stories, both of which are essential when telling stories of the Vietnam War. Using techniques common to postmodern writers, literary techniques, and a collection of emotional truths, O’Brien helps readers understand a wide perspective from the war, which ultimately makes the fictional stories he tells more believable.
Men went through so many tasks during the Vietnam War physically and mentally. The beginning chapters focus on training for war and being prepared for the worst. For example, when there is a sergeant in a room with the marines. The sergeant walks to the chalk board and writes “AMBUSHES ARE MURDER AND MURDER IS FUN” (36-37). The
The men in the Vietnam War had to deal with the painful memories and stress for the rest of their lives, however long those ended up being. The war’s strains weighed down the soldiers throughout their lives. One would think that the end of the war would have been a relief for the soldiers, but this was not always the case. When the soldiers returned
In some aspects the military can be said to be an end in itself but the author has failed to address its primary role as servant to the ruling interests. Though the book has some lacunas but it cannot be denied that Kathleen Barry has done a pioneering work on the concept of empathy which is the most important trait in all human beings. It also needs to be inculcated in the soldiers on the battlefield also so that they can effectively differentiate between right and wrong. The book provides a fresh and broad reaching critique of militarised masculinity.
There is a lot of pressure on men in society to be manly; however, what exactly does it mean to be manly? Though many people have different opinions, a lot of them conclude that a man has to be strong and somewhat emotionless to be considered a man. This assumption can lead to Toxic Masculinity, which is “A false idea that men are expected to be as manly as possible” (The Hard, Adrenaline-Soaked Truth About 'Toxic Masculinity, 2017). Men are forced to face these assumptions not only from those around him, but also from people he might see in Media. Media reinforces Toxic Masculinity which in turn causes men to belittle women. The types of media that encourage Toxic Masculinity are Television, Music, and Social Media.
In Phil Klay’s Redeployment, the war in Iraq is described as an intense masculine experience. Through the pages, the presence of women is marginal, if there is any woman in the short stories, and the reader enters in a realm of men and, more important, of what it means to be a real man. The assumption of war as a complete masculine experience might seem pretty obvious; however, Phil Klay is able to offer a crude and clear depiction of it. The author tells twelve different short stories of men who have only one thing in common: the experience of the Iraq War. But this is not simply a book about the war, but also about the consequences that this terrible experience has on the soldiers.
The media has long been recognized as important source of gender related information, television and cinema specifically influences its audience in a considerable way. (Denmark and Paludi 2008). With regards to the concept of gender cinema can offer a space where ambiguities of identities are played out; understanding the play of the categories of femininity and masculinity is very important in evaluating our own understandings of gender and how we react to different representations of it (Tasker 2002).If a film can show different individuals and we can recognize how social forces shape and constrain the individual according to classifications of gender it narrates an experience where we experience the film as gendered viewers. Film reflects and generates out own experience of gender over and above out own recognition and observation of it. (Pomerance 2001). Gender itself is a very complex concept to understand and portray onscreen, the concept of gender performativity was introduced by Judith butler in her book Gender Trouble: Gender Performance and Performativity.
The three movies – Platoon, Full Metal Jacket, and The Green Berets – are all movies based on the same historical event – the Vietnam war and US’s involvement in it. Yet, they all presented us with different and narrative point of view and authority figures in order to paint their individual values. The movies’ most obvious differences lie within the choice of their narrative point of view. The Green Beret, the earliest one, was directed by John Wayne and he also starred in the leading role. Wayne’s authority and influence in the 1960s was similar to the influence of Tom Hanks in the 21st Century.