June 16, 2012

"For boys who never question the boy code, it slowly turns into the 'bro code' or the man-box as they enter adulthood."

"When men stop questioning their own gender conditioning, it keeps them stuck in an immature stage of development that Sociologist Michael Kimmel calls 'guyland.' Guyland is when a man refuses to grow up and then behaves in ways so as to not be seen as unmanly, gay, or feminine. The way out of the man-box is straightforward and yet, will require more 'work.'"

Are you suffering out there in your "man-box"?

61 comments:

Skyler said...

Good grief.

Just because he's a sissy doesn't mean normal men are immature.

Does he get paid to write this?

ndspinelli said...

This guy needs to man-up!

Robert Cook said...

"Just because he's a sissy doesn't mean normal men are immature."

What are "normal" men?

virgil xenophon said...

This guy puts anything that the writers at The Onion could come up with to shame..

Moose said...

Oh god - here we go again.

Somehow acting like a man makes you suspect in the eyes of enlightened folk. However articles like this make me feel like they're written by the Slate "XX" crowd - who are striving to determine why men are broken. At least in their eyes.

Another way to say this is "men who question their own gender conditioning continually are desperately seeking 'guyland'".

It took me years to find out it's alright to be smelly ill-dressed (for you Ann) and be generally non-female.

It's society that constantly pushes men around, challenging their identities as culturally its not appropriate to act like a man. Our culture likes to feminize men as it makes them easier to control and understand.

Sorun said...

Crawl out of your man-box and get some exercise!

virgil xenophon said...

PS: Correction..."to UTTER shame."

ndspinelli said...

Skyler, You need to get over to the Sarah Jessica Parker thread w/ your cool avatar.

DCS said...

LMAO. Has the author raised any children and put his theories to the test?

Michael K said...

The article sounds like absolute bullshit. Boys grow up to be men and not girls or gays (unless they are that way genetically). Why is this a problem ? The writer wants them to grow up to be "human beings." How does he define that ? Obama voters ?

I have two sons, both married and fathers. One had a problem with alcohol as a teenager, overcame it at 26 and is now 47, a successful lawyer and partner in a national law firm.

The other is fireman, married with three kids and has successfully battled type I diabetes since he was 27. He is now 43. My three daughters like men and are doing well, also. Two have advanced degrees and the youngest is three courses from a BA.

God, I'm tired of pop psychology about men ! My nephew struggled in college, joined the Marines, served his enlistment, returned to complete college, did a union apprenticeship in elevator installation and repair and is now an executive with a company that does that work. He is married with a couple of kids.

One problem is that colleges have become centers of feminist BS. I wouldn't want to be a male undergraduate these days. There are far too few opportunities for men outside of college and nobody, except maybe Mike Holmes in Canada, are doing anything about it. The union that offered the apprenticeship my nephew did, three years, is an exception. Too bad unions don't do more for their members,

Paco Wové said...

The remedy to this lack of freedom that male conditioning engenders is to dive inward through things like high-quality therapy, coaching, being mentored, men’s groups, reading, writing, art, music, wilderness, spirituality, shamanism, Ayahuasca (and other plant medicines), or a modern day rite of passage.

Oh, barf.

Bob said...

Curious, because I have to work every day with two grown women whose behavior is indistinguishable from the behavior of 13 year olds in junior high school.

What's the female counterpart of Kimmel's scenario?

SteveR said...

I have three daughters in the age range of late teens, early twenties. I've observed a lot of these young men and I'm not sure what's going on. But I think they are mostly only going to live up to what's expected of them.

Put simply, when I was that age, I wanted to get laid. To even enter the game, things like jobs, automobiles and your own place were basic qualifiers. Now days they don't need any of them to have a decent social life.

ricpic said...

Guaranteed they always put Kimmel in right field.

Paco Wové said...

This is what comes of trying to live up to too many conflicting stereotypes. For some reason, the author feels as though some malign entity called "society" is forcing him to be a caricature of machismo while also expecting him to be a sensitive New Age guy while also expecting him to just fucking grow up, already.

Only one of these is true. And if he were really an adult, he wouldn't give a damn about "society".

Paco Wové said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
john said...

Once (well, more than once) I carelessly nipped the most sensitive part of my body while zipping up my jeans (skivvies were a bit loose).

Only buttons on my man box now, no more zippers. No way.

traditionalguy said...

Category hell is upon us again.

There are young men and mature men. There are young women and mature women. But that is not the answer to this idiot's ravings about guys being stuck in an immature place.

Human's personalities are far more varied than those 4 categories and being a male is not a trap at all...it is a basis for anything that our special personality type wants to become.

We never stop learning and growing by relating to friends, parents, children, golf partners, other generations, God's Holy Spirit of Truth, et al..

Ipso Fatso said...

"Are you suffering out there in your "man-box"?"

No but I am about to clean our three cat boxes!

Michael K said...

"Put simply, when I was that age, I wanted to get laid. "

Me too but it wasn't an option with most girls in the 1950s. I wonder how much of the social pathology we see is a consequence of the pill. Not that I want to ban it but the whole world of men and women changed after it came out.

Tim said...

"What are "normal" men?"

If you have to ask: 1) you aren't; 2) you'll never be.

Michael K said...

"Put simply, when I was that age, I wanted to get laid. "

Me too but it wasn't an option with most girls in the 1950s. I wonder how much of the social pathology we see is a consequence of the pill. Not that I want to ban it but the whole world of men and women changed after it came out.

Jay said...

I bet this author prides himself on his believe in evolution and science.

Tim said...

ANYTHING that links to Mark Morford of the SF Chronicle other than to mock the shit out of him is, by that fact alone, utter shit.

EDH said...

As these boys grow up into men, they allow someone else define who they are and how to be. As a result, men abandon and disconnect from themselves, which calcifies slowly over time. A common remedy is to medicate away this truth through addictive behaviors such as porn, drugs, alcohol tv, and technology. Men then buy what’s expected of them as their ability to listen to their own inner authority fades and thus the hamster wheel continues.

Very reminiscent of John Lennon's "Working Class Hero", which was essentially about the male predicament, and the hetero counterpart to his "Woman is the Nigger of the World", forty-odd years ago.

The thesis propounded here now seems to be that men have stagnated in the WCH role, while women have made progress transcending both the WCH and WitNotW "boxes".

Tellingly, perhaps, about why we've arrived here, WitNotW is a sex-based call to action "Woman is the nigger of the world, Think about it...do something about it", whereas WCH is an lonely, unempowered lament without even specific reference to the male sex.

Working Class Hero

As soon as you're born they make you feel small
By giving you no time instead of it all
Till the pain is so big you feel nothing at all
A working class hero is something to be...

They hurt you at home and they hit you at school
They hate you if you're clever and they despise a fool
Till you're so fucking crazy you can't follow their rules
A working class hero is something to be...

When they've tortured and scared you for twenty hard years
Then they expect you to pick a career
When you can't really function you're so full of fear
A working class hero is something to be...

Keep you doped with religion and sex and TV
And you think you're so clever and classless and free
But you're still fucking peasants as far as I can see
A working class hero is something to be
A working class hero is something to be

There's room at the top they are telling you still
But first you must learn how to smile as you kill
If you want to be like the folks on the hill
A working class hero is something to be
A working class hero is something to be

If you want to be a hero well just follow me
If you want to be a hero well just follow me


Woman is the Nigger of the World

Woman is the nigger of the world
Yes she is...think about it
Woman is the nigger of the world
Think about it...do something about it

We make her paint her face and dance
If she won't be a slave, we say that she don't love us
If she's real, we say she's trying to be a man
While putting her down, we pretend that she's above us

Woman is the nigger of the world...yes she is
If you don't believe me, take a look at the one you're with
Woman is the slave of the slaves
Ah, yeah...better scream about it

We make her bear and raise our children
And then we leave her flat for being a fat old mother hen
We tell her home is the only place she should be
Then we complain that she's too unworldly to be our friend

Woman is the nigger of the world...yes she is
If you don't believe me, take a look at the one you're with
Woman is the slave to the slaves
Yeah...alright...hit it!

We insult her every day on TV
And wonder why she has no guts or confidence
When she's young we kill her will to be free
While telling her not to be so smart we put her down for being so dumb

Woman is the nigger of the world
Yes she is...if you don't believe me, take a look at the one you're with
Woman is the slave to the slaves
Yes she is...if you believe me, you better scream about it

We make her paint her face and dance...

Paco Wové said...

ANYTHING that links to Mark Morford of the SF Chronicle other than to mock the shit out of him is, by that fact alone, utter shit.

Word.

Old Dad said...

Did Jerry Sandusky write this?

virgil xenophon said...

@PacoWove via Tm/

WORD upon WORD..

Real American said...

how do you normalize homosexuality? one way is to get straight guys to act like homos. Right?

Kel said...

The biggest challenge facing men these days is that they're not allowed to be men. They are drugged early in school with Ritalin, constantly taught to be nice to girls and to supplicate to them, and to treat testosterone as a poison.

Ann, since you married Meade, you probably don't realize how much the broader culture despises masculinity. There are men who are taught feminism, are "nice" to girls, and who never, never, never get a date and become frustrated omega losers. Or, they get married to a girl, and have either a loveless marriage where she treats him like crap or he is subject to her hypergamous need to find a bad boy adulterer. Either way, if he makes a move inconsistent with the feminist orthodoxy he can go to jail in 2 seconds based on her word alone, and his life can be ruined.

It's not for nothing that most suicides are from young men these days.

And white knight morons are the worst enemies of all.

Ann, if you haven't, you really need to ready some Roissy (now known as Chateau Heartiste). He has done a lot to open up the eyes of men around the world to the realities of human sexuality and how men and women are fundamentally different, and especially how feminist orthodoxy pervading society has destroyed relationships and poisoned everything it touches. Knowledge is a tool, and he knows a lot. I think you'd be impressed, even if you don't like how he puts his knowledge to use.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Sounds like this guy needs to get out more and meet some REAL men. I'll introduce him to my hubby. The Dumb Plumber.

I think all that navel gazing has clouded his vision.

SteveR said...

Me too but it wasn't an option with most girls in the 1950s.

My years were the 70s and early 80s and the pill was in play but there weren't giving it up unless you qualified.

Zach said...

I detect a pattern here. First I allow myself to cry, then I date Elizabeth Wurtzel. And want to.

Maguro said...

Alice in Chains Man in the Box

Mary Beth said...

When I read "man-box" I thought of this.

edutcher said...

My man-box is just fine, as are my legs, arms, and internal workin's.

This is another of those why being a man is soo 19th century pieces designed to make metrosexuals feel good.

WV "lycheck" What Neal Munro did yesterday.

Matthew Sablan said...

Anyone linking to Zimbardo's Demise of Guys crap should not be taken seriously.

... I feel like Crack now. Just linking to my blog without any in depth commentary.

Point being, his "study" is a sham and ignored the fact that *women* are also playing games more frequently than the past, in some areas overtaking men, yet we are not seeing them be harmed in the same way as men.

Astro said...

I certainly agree there is a problem, but I completely disagree about the cause.
From what I've observed over the past 30 years - raising a son who is married and has a well-paying management position - the problem is the increasing feminization of the school system. Boys are not permitted to behave as boys. Schools reward the traditional young female type of behavior of group socialization, sharing, caring for others; 'good' submissive behavior.
Recess - which allowed boys to run around, play sports, etc. - is gone from the schools. Also gone are opportunities for boys to work with their hands to do experiments or build things; shop class is gone, and computer demos have replaced experiments.
Boys who are too filled with energy to sit passively at a desk all day are drugged into submission.
My wife was a teacher and we were active parents, so I was able to observe this throughout the system, not just with my own son, in whom we encouraged non-conformity.

Matthew Sablan said...

Here's probably the most interesting section of the article: "If a brave man sees through this trap, he can realize that the culture’s version of masculinity doesn’t fit for him and he can then choose to be the author of his way of being." Notice a problem? Here, the author is saying that brave men can see through their conditioning and training to, uh, be brave, I guess?

n.n said...

Kimmel is confused about the significant distinguishing features and behaviors between males and females. I would guess this discrepancy stems from a rejection of individual dignity and the variance from the norm that it endows its possessor. He does not recognize that normality (or average) is established by the natural order, which is then enforced or promoted through conscious effort. Both instinct and consciousness are causal forces and the proper function of each is required to realize evolutionary fitness.

Darleen said...

Maybe because I'm officially in old fart range ... and came of age during the late 60's

but this The Graduate kind of navel-gazing OH MY I'M SO OPPRESSED BY SOCIETY'S EXPECTATIONS OF ME!! whine-a-thon I want to throw-up.

Guess what boys and girls, Life has a message for you -- it doesn't friggin care about YOU. You can accept it or change what you can about it, but learn to tell the difference.

tiger said...

I'm not saying the article (and by extension the writer) is bullshiate but...it's bullshiate.

Balfegor said...

RE: Kel:

I don't know that I would go quite that far, but I do think that one of the central gender-related hurdles for boys and young men today is realising that all the cant about gender equality is exactly that: hypocritical cant. If you take it seriously, you end up agitating for men's rights, on the one hand, or go full Stockholm with Sitzpinkeln etc. on the other.

And I say this as a man who is not at all masculine.

rcommal said...

Scroll down for Gaddis' [self-stated] credentials and current &past experiences in bullet-list format:

http://www.deepeningrelationships.com/jayson-gaddis/

Urghle, gurgle.

Sam said...

Not to my knowledge.

But then how would I know if I'm suffering in my 'man-box'?

LordSomber said...

I think Astro nailed it.

But another factor is lack of a father in the home.

Without a father, a boy will grow into a sexual caricature as an adult (thug, macho, etc.)
Same with a fatherless girl. (don't get me started)

This is not "society's" doing, but it is up to society how much they will tolerate it.

A lot of things ultimately come down to good parenting, than whatever social bugaboo is the concern du jour.

bagoh20 said...

I absolutely love my immature, unsophisticated, unexamined, macho man box. It's awesome!

Except for a 13 year spell when I raised a family, I've been constantly fixing it up with new and fun stuff, making it all comfy, interesting, and yet challenging.

If I never find anyone interested in looking in, that's fine with me. I built it to last a lifetime.

bagoh20 said...

I'm gonna find this guy and drop my man box on his soft little head. Darwin has been on vacation long enough.

DADvocate said...

Females have it so easy. They can be whatever they want. Super feminine, tom boyish, single, married, stay at home mom, career woman, bring home the bacon and fry it up in a pan. No worries about meeting societies expectations. Just do as the feminists tell you.

AllieOop said...

DaDvocate, you jest, right?

EMD said...

I thought "box" was a euphemism for something feminine.

ed said...

Michael Kimmel is a douche - Man Law!

TMink said...

" His documentary history, "Against the Tide: Pro-Feminist Men in the United States, 1776-1990" (Beacon, 1992), chronicled men who supported women’s equality since the founding of the country."

From his website.

Mangina alert.

Trey

Rob said...

When I am looking for wisdom, the sociology department is where I look. That is one "science" that is really reality based.

sleepless nights said...

I assumed they meant 28-yr-old, full time gamers.

With milkshakes.

John Lynch said...

I'd like to believe this, but it comes off as excuse-making for men who don't want to be seen as losers.

Want to know who enforces male gender roles? Women. Women are loved for who they are, men are loved for what they do.

That isn't going to change.

The Crack Emcee said...

My ManBox has invaded more than it's share of Women's Circles, so,...whatever.

Tim (Paco Wové, virgil xenophon),

ANYTHING that links to Mark Morford of the SF Chronicle other than to mock the shit out of him is, by that fact alone, utter shit.

No shit - remember this doozie?

Here's everything I've got with the Mark Morford tag, and - Oh! - do I mock,...

Matthew Sablan,

... I feel like Crack now. Just linking to my blog without any in depth commentary.

Is there any needed? It's the internet. The dummies are supposed to click things,...

Methadras said...

More misandry. This time from other men. Really folks, why the constant attack on masculinity or maleness or just being a male?

Robin said...

I didn't know that I had a "man box" ...

Nora said...

We were to out youngest's graduation a week ago and there were a couple of people getting their graduate degrees in 'Women Gender and Sexualuty Studies'. I remember wondering what their theses would read like, if even a definition of the subjects is such an absolute clap trap. Now I think I have an idea.

Joe said...

In a blog entitle "raising boys" and which raises the question about boys becoming men, the problem is apparently that men aren't enough like women.

The real problem is this: "what is going on with boys and men and why are they struggling so much?"

Answer: They aren't. Beyond societies insistence in general that adolescence continue past 16 and into the twenties, males are pretty much the same males they've always been. It is the feminists and intellectual pinheads who have created this false struggle. They did so by simply stating that whatever men enjoy is due to "arousal addiction."

(What does surprise me is that even many self-proclaimed libertarians have become moral scolds.)

Of course, the author gives himself away as a nut with the following: "The remedy to this lack of freedom that male conditioning engenders is to dive inward through things like high-quality therapy, coaching, being mentored, men’s groups, reading, writing, art, music, wilderness, spirituality, shamanism, Ayahuasca (and other plant medicines), or a modern day rite of passage."

That's right; the way to make boys men, is therapy, shamanism, plant medicines, art, music. Note the lack of sports, the lack of working with your hands, the lack of problem solving. So, the apparent way for boys to become men is to subjugate themselves to new age bullshit.