Toxic Masculinity - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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By Agent Steel
#14981671
A lot of people on social media are throwing around this phrase "toxic masculinity".

What does it mean?

To me it sounds like most of what they are describing as "toxic masculinity" is in fact just regular masculinity.

It seems to be some kind of assault against men.
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By Rancid
#14981672
Agent Steel wrote:A lot of people on social media are throwing around this phrase "toxic masculinity".

What does it mean?

To me it sounds like most of what they are describing as "toxic masculinity" is in fact just regular masculinity.

It seems to be some kind of assault against men.


Yea, it's the new buzz phrase since it seems like "rape culture" has died off in common parlance.

What tends to happen with these phrases is that academia comes up with them, and then regular people that don't actually know what these phrases mean start using them, and throwing them around.

My best understanding of what this phrase means is basically male behavior/traits that re-enforce a patriarchal culture. Since patriarchy is a bad thing. Anything that re-enforces it is toxic.

That's what I think the phrase is supposed to mean.

This however, opens a giant can of worms, because to discuss this topic deeper, you have to get into questions people are very uncomfortable talking about (or simply don't want to talk about). For example, the nature of males and females (Biology). The concept of social constructs (Nurture), etc. etc. etc. etc. Then it all becomes a giant shit fest of people yelling at each other, and no one actually discussing anything.
By Agent Steel
#14981674
I made a few posts about it mostly garnering positive feedback, but a few very loud dissenters commented and things started to get heated.

I'm done discussing this issue on my social media.

I made the point that masculinity is on the decline and people in the younger generation are softer than the older folks and this really annoying kid from Colorado kept engaging with me with some of the most annoying argumentative tactics I've ever come across. Mostly overstatements and some outright lies. I got tired of it very quickly.
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By Rancid
#14981676
Well.... NEVER discuss that kind of shit on social media. Most facebook/twitter arguments are fucking stupid, and full of morons that don't know how to think. Pofo might get you a better discussion on all sides of the issues surrounding the concept of Toxic Masculinity.


Is masculinity on the decline? It depends on what you define as masculinity. I this is the reason most discussion on this subject go to shit. I think people define masculinity differently. From there on, we have a mismatch in people's viewpoints, and thus we get conflict, and thus we get moronic name calling.

My question to you is, what do you define as masculine? If I'm going to give you my thoughts, I'd like to know what we first mean by masculinity.
By Pants-of-dog
#14981683
Wikipedia gives us this:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hegemon ... asculinity

    Connell argues that an important feature of hegemonic masculinity is the use of "toxic" practices such as physical violence, which may serve to reinforce men's dominance over women in Western societies.[3] Other scholars have used the term toxic masculinity to refer to stereotypically masculine gender roles that restrict the kinds of emotions allowable for boys and men to express, including social expectations that men seek to be dominant (the "alpha male") and limit their emotional range primarily to expressions of anger.[69]

    In psychology

    Terry Kupers defines toxic masculinity as "the constellation of socially regressive male traits that serve to foster domination, the devaluation of women, homophobia and wanton violence".[4][70] According to Kupers, toxic masculinity serves to outline aspects of hegemonic masculinity that are socially destructive, "such as misogyny, homophobia, greed, and violent domination". These traits are contrasted with more positive aspects of hegemonic masculinity such as "pride in [one's] ability to win at sports, to maintain solidarity with a friend, to succeed at work, or to provide for [one's] family".[4]

    Toxic masculine norms are a feature of life for men in American prisons, where they are reflected in the behaviour of both staff and inmates. The qualities of extreme self-reliance, domination of other men through violence, and avoiding the appearance of either femininity or weakness, comprise an unspoken code among prisoners.[71][72] Suppressing vulnerable emotions is often adopted in order to successfully cope with the harsh conditions of prison life, defined by punishment, social isolation, and aggression. These factors likely play a role in suicide among male prisoners.[71][73]

    Bullying of boys by their peers and domestic violence experienced by boys at home can also be expressions of toxic masculinity.[74] The often violent socialization of boys produces psychological trauma through the promotion of aggression and lack of intimate relations with others. Such trauma is often disregarded, such as in the saying "boys will be boys" with regard to bullying.[75]

In summary, it seems to mean “traditional masculine behaviour that has a negative impact on the man himself and/or others”.
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By Rancid
#14981688
Beren wrote:Only if the male is dominant, I guess. :lol:



I engage in rough play with my daughter as well. I guess that's not toxic masculinity?

Furthermore, can we define what is traditional masculine behavior?
#14981695
My dad used to do shoulder shoving with me before I hit puberty. Gosh I miss those days when I was just a kid and I wasn't expected to be ladylike. And he called me " little guy". I am still boyish but I have to mix in more girlish habits.

I had heard of toxic masculinity. Men should be able to express feelings other than aggression. All humans can be sensitive and we all get scared or sad. I rarely cry because I know I have to be the strong one, but I do have my teary moments. Crying is an outlet, not healthy to keep the pain hidden inside.
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By Wellsy
#14981700
Seems like its based in opposition to what ever is considered positive facets of masculinity. Theres debate of its origins from feminism or mens deep masculine groups.
[url]honeybadgerbrigade.com/2017/10/11/158273/[/url]
This link asserts the feminist origins of the term in raewyn connell.

http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/obj/s4/f2/dsk2/tape16/PQDD_0010/MQ26936.pdf
THE MYTHOPOETIC MEN'S MOVEMENT Although often regarded by the public as a homogeneous social movement, the contemporary men's movement in fact consists of at least four (and according to some scholars, six (see Clatterbaugh 1 990)) subgroups (Harding 1 Wb). The Profeminist/ Gay Affirmative branch of the movement, influential among men's studies cumcula at universities, is generally regarded as having resulted from the women's movement and the development of feminism, and concems itself with issues of sexism and inequality. Conversely, the Men's Rights Fathers' Rights branch appears to be a reaction to feminism and the women's movement, which both rnimics the latter's mode1 of aggressive political discourse and directly counters its claims about men. The Addiction/ Recovery branch evolved out of twelve step programs, centres around the idea that men need to be healed, and abounds with terms like .'toxic masculinity," "woundedness," and "father issues," and shares many similarities with the fourth branch of the men's movement-the mythopoetic branch.

http://www.menalive.com/PDF/booklet5.pdf
9) Men must honor and develop the deep masculine functions before we can integrate the feminine functions.

Many men have recognized that there are destructive aspects to the male role. Psychologist Shepherd Bliss calls this “toxic masculinity.” In our desire to heal many of us have sought to find health by drawing on the feminine. If the male role is destructive, we thought, maybe the women have a better sense of what is healthy. The result has been a poisonous dependency on women where we have become locked into destructive relationships and taken on womenʼs toxic femininity.

Rather than rejecting our masculinity in favor of the feminine, we must go deeper to reconnect with the source of our authentic manhood. This can only be done in the company of other men. Having reowned our manhood we can then enter into healthy relationships with women (who have done their own healing in the company of other women) and integrate the feminine into our lives.

[url]www2.clarku.edu/faculty/addis/menscoping/files/addis_cohane_2005.pdf[/url]
A central assumption in social constructionist frameworks is that there is not a singular masculinity but rather multiple competing masculinities that are continuously being constructed and contested (Connell, 1995). For example, White lower-class suburban masculinities may take different forms than Latino urban masculinities, although they may also share some features. Thus, some social constructionist theorists have emphasized the different ways race, ethnicity, and social class are simultaneously constructed alongside different masculinities. In effect, there is nothing called masculinity, but rather urban African-American masculinities, White middle-class masculinities, and so on. Finally, social constructionist frameworks allow, and in fact expect, considerable contextual variability in the construction of masculinities. For example, Kupers (this issue) describes a specific form of masculinity he terms “toxic masculinity” that is thought to be common among men in prison.

And in emphasis on Conell as the asserted originator, i once posted this although the link no longer exists...
That the concept of hegemonic masculinity reduces, in practice, to a reification of power or toxicity has also been argued from different points of view. Holter (1997, 2003), in the most conceptually sophisticated of all critiques, argues that the concept constructs masculine power from the direct experience of women rather than from the structural basis of women’s subordination. Holter believes that we must distinguish between “patriarchy,” the long-term structure of the subordination of women, and “gender,” a specific system of exchange that arose in the context of modern capitalism. It is a mistake to treat a hierarchy of masculinities constructed within gender relations as logically continuous with the patriarchal subordination of women. Holter (1997) tellingly points to Norwegian survey evidence showing that the gender identities of men do not map directly onto such equality-related practices as attitudes toward violence.
... \
Because the concept of hegemonic masculinity is based on practice that permits men’s collective dominance over women to continue, it is not surprising that in some contexts, hegemonic masculinity actually does refer to men’s engaging in toxic practices—including physical violence—that stabilize gender dominance in a particular setting. However, violence and other noxious practices are not always the defining characteristics, since hegemony has numerous configurations. Indeed, as Wetherell and Edley (1999) ironically observe, one of the most effective ways of “being a man” in certain local contexts may be to demonstrate one’s distance from a regional hegemonic masculinity.
...
Thus, while we welcome most of the applications and modifications of the hegemonic masculinity concept as contributions to the understanding of gender dynamics, we reject those usages that imply a fixed character type, or an assemblage of toxic traits. These usages are not trivial—they are trying to name significant issues about gender, such as the persistence of violence or the consequences of domination. But they do so in a way that conflicts with the analysis of hegemony in gender relations and is therefore incompatible with (not just a variation on) both the initial statements and the main developments of this concept.


Overall its bo more sophisticated than stating one things certain traits and behaviours are ‘bad’ in association with assumed normative roles of men.
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By Rancid
#14981701
MistyTiger wrote:Men should be able to express feelings other than aggression.


Most men I know are able to express feelings other than aggression.

@Wellsy,

That's fucking dense. Can't say I really understand what it's all trying to say.
#14981729
When things go to Hell all around you, you don’t look to the guy telling you how scared he is to get you through it. You look to the ‘masculine’ guy who doesn’t express his emotions and fills you with hope and leadership. No one wants led by someone crying to show he has emotions too.
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By Wellsy
#14981741
What I find in regards to emotional expression and true to it being a reflection of peoples social position on average is that there is more of a public and private distinction to emotional expression.

Women don’t have a free pass to be emotional as they have expectations placed on them in different roles to be professional and being overly emotion in an undesirable way would undermine themselves as confirming stereotypes.
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By JohnRawls
#14981743
Agent Steel wrote:I made a few posts about it mostly garnering positive feedback, but a few very loud dissenters commented and things started to get heated.

I'm done discussing this issue on my social media.

I made the point that masculinity is on the decline and people in the younger generation are softer than the older folks and this really annoying kid from Colorado kept engaging with me with some of the most annoying argumentative tactics I've ever come across. Mostly overstatements and some outright lies. I got tired of it very quickly.


Again, as El @Rancid mentioned, it depends what you mean by masculinity. But i do agree with you that it is on the decline.(Not necessary a good thing) Nothing can be as Masculine as the 80s and the early 90s with all of the body builders, disco and heavy metal.

Most biased people will argue that below is toxic masculinity but why is it bad if it continue?
Image
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By Rancid
#14981752
One Degree wrote:No one wants led by someone crying to show he has emotions too.


Expressing emotion doesn't necessarily mean that you are expressing a cry baby wienie baby emotions.

Emotion != crying, at least not always.
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By Godstud
#14981754
One degree wrote:When things go to Hell all around you, you don’t look to the guy telling you how scared he is to get you through it. You look to the ‘masculine’ guy who doesn’t express his emotions and fills you with hope and leadership. No one wants led by someone crying to show he has emotions too.
Showing emotions is not a sign of weakness. Only simpletons think so.
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By SolarCross
#14981755
Godstud wrote:Showing emotions is not a sign of weakness. Only simpletons think so.


Too right there is nothing weak about displaying contempt, wrath and pride. :excited:

Last edited by SolarCross on 21 Jan 2019 14:46, edited 1 time in total.
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By One Degree
#14981760
Rancid wrote:Expressing emotion doesn't necessarily mean that you are expressing a cry baby wienie baby emotions.

Emotion != crying, at least not always.


I agree, but demanding that is how men should act all the time eliminates them being able to lead when needed. It isn’t even necessarily a masculine trait even though we stereotype it as so. There have always been women who presented themselves as someone who won’t succumb to emotion in crisis.
This requires not being known as an emotional person. No one wants to see the boss being emotional.
It seems preferable imo to continue to have public and private personas.
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