Hooks was raised to believe that men were born to rule the world because that’s how God viewed it and how her parents wanted to raise their family. Her role was to “to serve, to be weak, to be free from the burden of thinking, to caretake and to nurture others.” Hook’s brother was taught to be a stereotypical man. That rage was okay, violence was okay and that showing emotion wasn’t a manly thing to do. Something very disturbing happened in her childhood. All Hooks wanted to do was play marbles with her brother and ignored that her dad said she wasn’t allowed because she was a girl. After she denied and persisted that she wanted to keep playing, her dad beat her. Her mom told her that she “need(ed) to accept that (she) was just a little girl and girls can’t do what boys do.” It’s not right for a parent to say these things and I can understand how scarring it is to be told something like that. I especially feel bad that even her mother, another woman, told her not to do what she wanted either.
“Patriarchy as a system has denied males access to full emotional well-being…” The limits that are put on men about being able to express emotions stop these men from feeling pain or sadness. If they express how they feel they aren’t seen as manly enough and aren’t doing their jobs properly. Bottling up feelings is never a good way to live and prevents them from feeling natural emotions. Men are “supposed” to be leaders, that’s what many of them believe anyway. Not only would redefining masculinity and helping end sexism be beneficial to women, it would also be great for men that want to express themselves but don’t because of societal beliefs. It would liberate them from being violent, angry and emotionless because by redefining this term it would also impact them in ways they might not have expected. It is often seen that women are the ones that want change because their voices aren’t loud enough and they are seen as weak and powerless but at the same time this change is needed for the men as well. They might want to express emotion and be more loving and caring but aren’t because of the beliefs put on them to be stern, angry and powerful.
Men are scared to act, dress and talk a certain way in fear that they will be perecived as homosexulas. They don’t want people to possibly have the “wrong idea” about them. They want to be seen as “real” men. Kimmel writes that homophobia is a fear that other men will unmask them and reveal who they really are, while at the same time stripping them from their masculinity. Boys are afraid to be unmanly and be too feminine. No one wants to be called a “sissy” because it just makes them feel like they don’t belong and that they are different.
A way we all can do a part and redefine masculinity is to simply stop having expectations and stereotype what men should do and how they should act. Women and other men shouldn’t have a predetermined opinion on how men should show emotion or how they feel, talk or dress. By doing this it will liberate everybody because no one will judge people based on your sexual orientation, race or sex. No one wants to go through life having heavy societal expectations being put on them, whether you are a man or a woman everyone should have a fair shot at being their own person and do whatever they please without having society put their beliefs on them. This way everyone will be treated fairly and everyone will live their life how they please and be liberated from the conceptions that have already been put into place for them.