Men, masculinity and the rape culture

1. The main issue that Jackson Katz explores in the video Tough Guise is the crisis in masculinity. Jackson Katz defines the crisis in masculinity as how guys are now characterizing the modern day “ tough guy. ” To be tough many men in the video used adjectives such as; respected, tough, and muscular as words to describe what they think being a “ tough guy” in today’s society means. 2. One specific example of this issue can be shown through men and violence. In today’s society from a very young age boys/men are taught that to be tough you have to be rough, rugged, muscular, or strong to survive in our culture. If you fail to meet these criteria you are cast out and disregarded as a wimp, weak, wuss, or girly among many other things. Boys/men are taught to not only be physically strong but also emotionally strong. In today’s society our view of the “ tough guy” has dramatically changed, if men show any sort of emotion it is regarded as a sign of weakness. They are taught that showing pain or suffering is not tolerated. Another example of this issue is through violent masculinity. Boys and men are taught that violence is the answer, there is kids killing kids. Boys/men are starting to take revenge on people through violence, they feel that violence is needed to gain stature and power in our society. 3. Two specific explanations for this problem can be shown through the media, Hollywood, video games, sports, the community, and family among many others. Sports, I believe are one of the biggest contributors to violence from boys/men. Sports portray the “ average” as overall irregularly proportioned compared to the actual man. Sports teach young boys/men that to earn respect you have to disrespect others. Another high contributor is the media. The media portrays men as being abusive and violent, stating that to maintain their manhood they need to be tough and violent. The medias image of a tough man has become so skewed, where will the media head next? 4. The concept of socialization, agent and target can be easily applied to tough guys. Starting first with agent, I think that the agent can be the media and how they influence how men perceive themselves and what it takes to become a “ tough guy. ” Secondly, I believe that the target can be perceived as the men. The agent (the media) aims video games and such towards men thus making them the target in this situation. Lastly, I feel that socialization affects both men and women alike. It affects women in the way in which men treat, or act towards them due to the many influences of media, sports, video games, and Hollywood. I also feel that it affects men in the way in which they try to change their body and personality to fit what is the social norm for men. 5. To protect our boys from this barrage Katz suggests that we have boys/men exposed to positive influences. Have men look inside for individuality and courage. One main key factor is having men express their range of emotions to express the different representations of males. Males should be encouraged to express feelings, reveal vulnerability, and most of all courage and character to admit that they need other people. 6. One main similarity that I noticed between both the ways in which boys and girls socialize is through the media. The media is the biggest influence on both sexes for how they both perceive themselves and how it influences their behavior. Another similarity between the boys and girls I think is that in Reviving Ophelia young girls are shown to change their bodies to adjust to what the media wants. In the same way boys do the same thing. They adjust their bodies through extreme workouts, steroids, vitamins and many others. One main difference through both of these films is that women have a lot more sexual pressures. They are getting pushed into sexual acts when in most times they aren’t ready. Whereas men have a lot more pressures to be “ tough guys. ” Through both the similarities and differences both situations are equally thought provoking and need to be addressed in our society today. 7. Through watching the video Tough Guise I feel that I have gained a deeper understanding of some of the challenges that men are facing. In our current society we as a whole have become so focused on looks and less focused on personality. The media has begun to influence all humankind is so many demeaning ways. Where we are now and where we were fifty years ago has done a 360 whirlwind spin. And where we are going in another fifty years will be another 360 whirlwind spin unless, we as humankind do something to change it.