The Man Box
What is the man box?
According to a TED talk by Tony Porter, the man box is the ideology behind the way a man should behave and carry himself in the society. The man box is created through the socialization of boys into what ideally a man should be like.
What are some ways that you think males are placed in this box?
Men and young boys are placed in this box through socialization from a young age, as mentioned before. They grow up thinking and believing that women are weak, they perceive them as objects, mostly sexual objects. From when they are young boys, they are taught that men should stay strong, endure the most difficult of situations, and never cry. It is weak for a man to cry. Generally, the man box places men in a position where they feel they are superior and strong, and moments of weakness and unfathomable.
Do you place males in this man-box?
The society we live in has glorified men and portrayed them as stronger beings; therefore, it is easy to place men in this man box. Placing them in this box becomes easier especially because most are rigid, shy away from displaying emotions of any kind, and some are openly chauvinistic and gender-insensitivity.
What are the dysfunctions of putting males into this man-box?
The man-box makes men develop certain behaviors towards women that are either violent or insulting. The man-box places great expectations on men, how they should behave, and see women as lesser beings. The man-box makes the man feel entitled, and therefore, engage in vices such as rape and other forms of sexual assault. The fact that the man-box creates the notion that women are weak and sexual objects leads men into violence against women. Most of the crimes and violence perpetuated against women because the man-box mentality include, rape, pornography, dating violence, stalking behavior, and aggravated sexual assault.
What do you think is the role of our females in promoting the rigid idea of a “real man”?
Women have played a great role in promoting the man-box ideas of a real man. They have done this by being overly submissive, allowing men to have indecent sexual relations with them, prostitution, shying away from engaging in politics, among other behaviors.
How is men’s liberation from the man-box tied to women’s liberation?
When the men are liberated from the man-box, women no longer feel pressured by men, they receive freedom that did not exist before, and they can have platonic friendships with men, without any implications. A liberated man is an open-minded man, who does not see women as a weak being, but lets them have a chance in doing great things in life, just as men do.
What changes would you make in socializing children so that both males are females can develop qualities that are healthy rather than qualities that fit rigid stereotypes?
When bringing up the boy child, he should be taught to understand that in life, there are moments of weakness, and it is all right to feel overwhelmed. The boy child should be taught that real manhood does not lie in their sexuality or physical abilities, but in the power of their minds. Girl children should also be socialized to perceive boys as their equals, and that no gender is greater than the other.