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Hegemonic masculinity

What Do We Mean When We Say “Toxic Masculinity?”

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When we talk about toxic masculinity, it is often in the context of a man’s behavior as experienced by another person–likely a woman, queer person, or a man who does not embody a toxic form of masculinity. What we often overlook in conversations of toxic masculinity is that the first victim of one’s embodiment of…

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New Voices on Masculinities: Dropping the Ball by Matt Bogdanow

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Editor’s Note: I am excited to introduce New Voices on Masculinities, a series of original content written for The Bridges We Burn, in which author’s explore topics related to their identity.  The first author in the series is musician and educator, Matt Bogdanow. ~~~ On February 1st, 2015, I watched the New England Patriots––my hometown heroes––defeat the Seattle…

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Patriarchy, Homophobia, and the Lack of Touch in the Lives of Men

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Patriarchy limits the range of acceptable emotions that real men are allowed to express. And the means for expressing those emotions are equally small. What this means is that we–collectively, as a society, even well meaning liberals and feminists–often misinterpret, or project our internalized patriarchy upon men and boys. Here are a few examples of what…

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Men, Friendship, and the Health Effects of Loneliness

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The expectations of toxic masculinity–and normative masculine gender socialization–takes a toll on men and boys in a variety of ways. This is by no means an argument for minimizing or re-centering the discourse on rape culture away from women, girls, queer folks, people who are gender-non-conforming, and other marginalized communities and individuals. But in order to…

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Toxic Masculinity Feeds Rape Culture

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Toxic masculinity–the way of being a man that requires aggression, sexual domination, earning big money, being athletic, and most definitely, being heterosexual–not only feeds rape culture, but is co-dependent upon it. In fact, rape culture and toxic masculinity feed each other while destroying everything they touch. The video below from MTV News provides a quick and…

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“Men, Feminism, and Men’s Contradictory Experiences of Power” by Michael Kaufman

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As one of the preeminent scholars on Masculinity, Michael Kaufman’s research has highlighted contradictions within traditional feminist narratives of patriarchal power and control. That is not to say that he is trying to undermine feminist discourse, or does not support it; rather Kaufman works to complicate the discourse by showing how competition and violence within…

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When Will Boys Become Men?

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The phrase “boys will be boys” used to excuse a myriad of behaviors, from the semi-benign: aggressiveness on the playground, competitiveness on the ball field; to the truly atrocious: street harassment (formerly known as cat-calling), to sexual violence and rape. What is interesting about this statement is that it associates the behavior of grown men,…

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Real Men Do Hit Women

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“The question remains about how to bring boys and men along in this ambitious work. Male violence is not simply a behaviour that can be turned on or off, but rather an entire complex of norms, values and practices with deep connections to the social, political and economic order. For men and boys, abandoning violence…

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