Fwd. [BOYSED] Websites for Boys?

AnneM (AnneM@edc.org)
Thu, 16 Jul 1998 08:27:30 -0400

Forwarded from
Subject: [BOYSED] Websites for Boys?
From: boysed@pnc.com.au at Internet
Date: 7/16/98 9:38

On Thu, 16 Jul 1998 00:19:31 +1300
Michael Lynch <whysman@linux.advcomm.co.nz> wrote:
> Which male stereotypes do you want them to transcend?
> Willing Provider?
> Fearless Protector?
> Insistent Payer?
> Sensative and Appropriate Initiator?
> Uncomplaining Victim?

I think this is a worthwhile line to pursue. I agree it would be nice to
have more resources for boys, but as Michael points out, there is the
problem of what to promote and what to discourage. This is my problem with
some of the material that's being used in schools at the moment.

Taking the idea further, the list is not that different for men or boys.
I see men all around me who I think need to transcend many of their male
behaviours, while keeping many others.

Broadly, I think those that need to be transcended are the ones which
make us (males) too vulnerable. The stereotypes I would like to see
transcended include:
1. Man as servant (men have the muscles, don't mind dealing with smelly
things etc)
2. Man as disposable (a woman's life is most valuable, followed by
children, and finally men/boys)
3. Man as insensitive (we can treat them inconconsiderately)
4. Man as sexually one-dimensional (we only want "one thing")
5. Men take, women give emotionally/sexually
6. Children belong to women
7. Father as mother's little helper
8. Mother as infallible
9. Masculinity as inferior to femininity
10. Men are violent, women are not

This is off the top of my head, but I think most boys and men are being
taught these that the above stereotypes are true. Hence, many boys grow
into men actually believing all or most of the above.

While it is valuable to teach girls and women otherwise, I think the
most important thing is to teach boys and men that they do not have to
go along with the stereotype, and let women who cling to it be left out
in the cold.

BTW, my daughters came hoome from shool recently reciting the following

Boys have got the muscles,
Teachers have the brains,
But girls have got the sexy legs
So they win the game.

Q . E . D .


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