Other Publications: My Humanity Is Not Part of Your Manhood

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So I wrote another piece for The Good Men Project. I had published one a few weeks ago on daily questions I'm asking my friends during the pandemic.  You might have read that since I mentioned it on my Stranger Days series.  But this post didn't really derive from that so I figured I would add it to my list of Other Publications, a category on this blog where I share things I've published elsewhere.  

The piece on The Good Men Project is "My Humanity Is Not Part of Your Manhood: 5 reasons no one can tell you what it means to be a man."  It's the type of piece that they are likely to publish because the GMP is interested in and focused on guiding more positive and sincere forms of masculinity in a society that still idolizes problematic versions of it.  I've enjoyed regularly reading essays from the site as they usually give me new insights to think about regarding my own sense of self and how I interact or understand the experiences of others.  

Anywho, here's a brief snippet:  

"The title of man is one that is often bestowed upon certain folks and with it, comes a variety of assumptions and ingrained values about how typical (read: white, heteronormative, cisgender) males are supposed to exist in this world. While the granting of and aspiration of such a title has motivated some significant things in our past, they have also perpetuated many toxic masculine practices in small and large cultural practices. Everything from bullying to hazing to domestic violence to genocide, manhood has roots in each of them.

Of course, that doesn’t mean at times in my life, I also didn’t aspire to acquire such a title. I wanted someone–particularly those I saw as “men” to identify my status. And that’s the tricky party about becoming a “man.” One can’t necessarily claim it without the approval of others. Even if one meets the merits of “man” claims the title, he claims it because he has accepted what society says it means to be a man. It’s interwoven into the cultural practices and expectations because it is not just a title but a brand both literally and figuratively. It is a style of acting and relating to others that is determined by our patriarchal society while at the same time, it is branded into the way we carry ourselves, the physical labors that mark our bodies, the expectations of how we will assert ourselves in confrontations of all sort."

If you want to keep reading, I suggest you go on over and read the full piece at the Good Men Project.  Feel free to leave a comment there or here with your thoughts.  Thank you!



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Comments

  1. Lance;
    You will probably not receive the moniker of "Man" from elders, unless you are over a above all others. By some accounts, one does not receive that moniker until someone looks up to you as such. When I was in the military, I belonged to a group that's sole purpose was to promote those under their tutelage to a greater purpose. I was at one of their meetings that I was approached by a junior person. They flat out stated that they admired me. I had noticed this person and knew who they were, but never interacted with them at all. It was at that time that I realized the impact I could have on people.
    So, don't set your sights on achieving a goal that may not be achievable if viewed by your elders. Only do the best you can to mentor those around you and support them in all they are.
    Don

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    Replies
    1. Hi Don,

      Thank you for reading my blog and sharing your thoughts.

      I am not sure I'm all that interested in the moniker because like the great Admiral Ackbar once exclaimed, "It's a trap". In the full essay, my larger point is that I'm much happier with aspiring to be human rather than just "man".

      thank you
      Lance

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