Society’s expectations put a lot pressure on individuals regarding the appropriate attitudes and roles that each sex should have and it often cause discrimination. As we all know, gender is socially constructed and because of that society has always said that men are above women. Society has taught us that men are known to be violent, women known to be polite, blue is a color for boys and pink’s color is for girls, etc. This means that in the society we live in, it would be unacceptable to see a woman being violent and speak loud because she would have been considered rude and dangerous. It is the same case for a male, a man cannot being gentle and sweet because he would be considered as too weak and feminine. These are known as double standards and they are created by society.
“Masculinity as Homophobia” by Michael Kimmel suggests that men are into homophobia because they are scared of feminity. “Homophobia is the fear that other men will unmask us, emasculate us, reveal to us and the world that we do not measure up, that we are not real men” (Kimmel 1). This passage shows that men are scared of showing who they truly are because society has always taught them that it is unnatural for a man to be emotional, soft or kind. Because society has shown the appropriate behavior that each men should have, they are scared of showing their nature, they believe people will make fun of them. Most men hide from reality, they have always been told that girls are supposed to be emotional and if boys start acting like girls, people would think that they too weak and feminine.
In “Understand Patriarchy” by Bell Hooks, the authors explains and gives her opinion about patriarchy. She said that patriarchy is a political-social system that insists that male are dominating, superior to everything and everyone (Hooks 1). Hooks also said that her parents believed in patriarchy and at a young age they taught her many things like: her role as a female was to serve, to be weak, to be free from the burden of thinking, to caretake and nurture others. Her parents also taught that it was considered as “unnatural” for a woman to be violent. Bell also shared a traumatic event with his brother. She announced to her brother that she would like to play marbles, and he replied by saying “Girls do not play marbles. This is a boy’s game.” The worst part is that her father didn’t defend her. He was being violent and he told her “You’re just a little girl. When I tell you something, I mean for you to do it”. This is a perfect example of patriarchy because it shows that men have much more privileges than women. Since then, Hooks realized that the world she lives in is a world’s men and she does not have much power.
In conclusion, I feel like that men should redefine the concept of masculinity not just for gender equality or to decrease sexism or homophobia, but it would be good for them. Imagine if they change the idea of “masculinity”, they would be able to act the way they want or dress the way they want. Men would stop hidding behind reality and they would actually show their real faces. I hope one day that society will change their gender roles perceptions because people are learning all these double standards by interacting with others.