The author Lori Gottlieb markets herself as a teller of harsh relationship truths for women. As a contributor to The Atlantic, she saw her 2008 piece “Marry Him!” turned into a full-fledged book in which she advocates that women abandon long lists of qualities marriageable men need to have and marry Mr. Good Enough before their biological clock ticks its last tock. (I interviewed Gottlieb about Marry Him: The Case For Settling For Mr. Good Enough back in 2011.)
Gottlieb, who is also a psychotherapist, is back with a new controversial subject in The New York Times Magazine: how trying to be completely egalitarian in our relationships may be taking the passion out of our sex lives. Keep reading »
Just in case you weren’t clear why we still need feminism to break down the sexism of culturally-prescribed gender roles: MTV announced yesterday it greenlit a new reality TV show called “Guy Court” which will straight-up judge bros on their bro-itude. Explains Yahoo:
In the half-hour comedic courtroom series “Guy Court,” which will premiere in fall 2013, the laws of manhood will be upheld as some familiar MTV2 faces will determine the guilt or innocence of a variety of cases in accordance with Guy Code. Each real life case will be judged, defended and prosecuted with the perfect combination of comedy and justice. Keep reading »
No wonder some men can have pretty messed up ideas about masculinity. This old bodybuilding ad posted on Boing Boing — in which men claim to have gained 25 and 70 pounds of muscle and increased their “He-Man looks” by 1,000 percent — really goes for the hard sell. Is it just me or does that dude look like Ronnie from “Jersey Shore”? [Boing Boing]
February 14th isn’t just Valentine’s Day: it’s also V-Day, the day dedicated to raising awareness about violence against women. The playwright Eve Ensler, whose play “The Vagina Monologues” is performed all over the country on V-Day to raise money for local shelters and crises centers which help women, is commemorating this year with One Billion Rising. The One Billion Rising campaign is asking people all over the world to go on strike for the day, and to hold gatherings and parties to protest against the violence instead. I won’t be striking, but I have been sending Eve Ensler’s “Man Prayer” video to some of the men in my life. It’s recited by men and boys from around the world, each in their own language. The prayer for men asks them to question toxic masculinity which are constricting, like solving problems by hitting, holding negative feelings inside and seeking to control. No matter what your faith, I think any feminist can join their hands together in this prayer. [YouTube]
It used to be that a lady only had to be on the lookout for Axe Body Wash as a demarcation of doucheitude in a man’s shower. But if the next time you hop in your dude’s no-doubt-scum-covered tub and you catch a whiff of bacon, urinal cake, or Republicanism — or worse, all three — book it out of there with shampoo in your hair. Your dude washes himself with “ManHands,” soaps for the manly man. Keep reading »
Here is a confession: I am a dude, and sometimes I don’t want to have sex. For good reasons, or no reasons at all. It just depends.
I know that’s not actually shocking, but bear with me here, because that is somehow still a radical thing to admit. It’s still the default assumption about men, still casually reinforced basically every day. And women explicitly get told that it’s true, by men, even when they’re asked directly. Here’s just one recent example, from Cosmopolitan‘s “Ask Him Anything” column, in response to a question about why a woman’s husband wants to do it the moment they check into a hotel room anywhere: “Guys pretty much want sex no matter where they go – work, the mall, funerals, etc,” the “Him” who writes the column says, before explaining that a hotel room is just a part of that endless chain. Keep reading »
Hello from out here in Man Card America, where proving your masculinity to the dude-friends who are vigilantly looking to revoke your “Man Card” if you get caught engaging in unmanly activities like being scared, doing what your girlfriend wants to do sometimes, enjoying a song by a woman, or drinking the wrong kind of cheap light beer is an ongoing campaign. If you look at the advertisements of the past several years, you’d think that having your Man Card revoked was, like, a real thing that could actually happen. Keep reading »
The issues of male rape and sexual abuse get plenty of sensationalistic air time on “Law & Order: SVU,” but not so much substantive awareness in our day-to-day lives. While it is true that reported sexual abuse of girls and women is far more prevalent than male abuse, I also assume acknowledging or discussing male sexual abuse brings up uncomfortable feelings amongst guys about masculinity and what it means to be a “strong man.” There’s even vicious stereotypes that dog gay guys — who are routinely denigrated as being “not manly enough” — that they must have been sexually abused as kids. In a way, that’s kind of all you need to know about what some (perhaps many) people think of male sexual abuse survivors.
So it makes sense then, from a messaging standpoint, that to reach male victims of sexual abuse, the UK group Survivors UK would address “masculinity” head-on. Their new campaign, which launches this week in time for a rugby tournament in London, features a rugby ball (speared by a nail, I think?) and the slogan: “Real men get raped: and talking about it takes real strength.” Keep reading »
As if naming their sloppy Joe sandwich a “Manwich” wasn’t macho enough, a company is now explaining why commercials advertising their product show dudes talking about “feminine
” or “gay
” topics like hair and musical theater and then getting smacked in the face while a male voice growls, “It’s called a Man
This guy uses hair products? Given to him by a guy named Alejandro? Smack him!
Uh oh, it’s the Be A Real Man police … Keep reading »