Inside the ‘’Man Box’’
by Kirameshin on October 17, 2014 - 9:38pm
What is the ‘’man box’’? How does it apply to our society? This concept defines the social values of hegemonic masculinity in which men are supposed to conform. Men are taught to be dominant in every social aspect of their lives. They are taught to be aggressive not only socially, but sexually too. They are taught to be stoic, and to not show any emotional signs on their faces publicly. In short, they are taught to be tough guys in this so-called ‘’man box’’. Once they step out of this box, the society will completely judge them in a different way; in fact, these men will be defined as weak, vulnerable and powerless people of their kind.
This shows us how society tries to construct a hegemonic culture and get a full control over men’s social behaviors. Videogames and movies are often represented with strong and muscular guys using guns and violence to solve issues. Social media advertises physical well-built men models because it is seen as powerful, healthy and sexually attractive.
What about the men outside the ‘’man box’’? Should we really criticize them for not following the norms of this box? Should we really judge them for who they are not? Should we really build up masculinity with traditional standards of men’s identities?
Living in the ‘’man box’’ shouldn’t be an obligatory norm; it should be a choice. Men are free to be whatever they want to be and to do whatever they want to do. It doesn’t mean that they are showing weakness when they aren’t stoic. They can express their emotions and their feelings freely too. We live in an influential culture where vulnerability has stolen our freedom to expression. Men don’t decide to be weak. The society has made them weak.
The following link provides more information about the ‘’man box’’: