Dude Looks Like a Lady!

February 15th, 2015

No no no, this isn’t a a tribute blog to Aerosmith’s 1987 classic release (maybe next time). This effort is more of being conscious enough to take a step back and examine gender cultural norms and simply ask “why?” In each culture there is a set of “guidelines” set for each individual to help determine and practice their gender roles. If you find yourself stepping out of these gender norms you may find yourself at the tail end of strange looks or a dirty verbal lashing. But why?

In this video you can see that gender roles are learned at a young age! Now how can we develop open minded youth when we embed them with what is “normal” before they can even tie their shoes?! Take in account this guy. His tactics may be “out there” but his heart is in the right place. You go Russian dress wearing man! ты удивительный. Now I know that guy is a bit extreme but I am sure most of have gone through some kind of scrutiny because of imposing gender norms. Whether it be being picked on because you like a “girl color” or you get dirty looks at recess from the boys because “girls don’t play football!” Growing up I had a really long hair “for a boy”, this caused a bit of a ruckus among my conservative family members. “That’s not what a boy is suppose to look like!”  But what exactly am I getting at?

Cultural Theory, my friends; “Gendered identities and differences between genders are consequences of cultural structures and practices that individuals internalize.” As author Julia Wood says. In other words, not all expectations of male/female is the same when you examine different cultures from around the world! Let’s look at the Japanese culture for example. The males are fortunate (SO LUCKY) enough to “be able” to wear these awesome, dress like, things called Yukatas.   I mean come on, imagine the comfort? But boys don’t wear dresses, or do they?

Yukata, traditional Japanese clothingNow I am not telling you to go buy yourself a floral mini skirt or a tuxedo, but by all means, I am just simply giving you a bit of insight so maybe you’ll be more aware of these social stigmas. Why can’t men wear dresses in our western culture? In this day and age there has definitely been a positive shift in acceptance of counter culture but we still have a long way to go!

The Art of Manliness

January 29th, 2015

     I stumbled across this video and appreciated the ‘realness’ of its content! He acknowledges the “hyper-masculine” cartoonish image portrayed by the media and completely scratches it! Just as girls, us men also have a unrealistic version of what our gender should be and act like. Advertising like these commercials is what adds the misconstrued image of how the male gender should be  like that our ‘little dudes’ are getting. There has been a common theme in today’s advertising that we see a overly aggressive male (thank you Terry Crew) doing ridiculous things such as fight a shark or walk onto the beach as astronaut!

In this video he says it perfectly, “If you want to be a man, simply act like one.” Theories discussed in our book a the social learning theory, suggests that we do what we do because we’ve learned it through our social interactions with our peers or the media! In layman’s terms, “monkey see, monkey do.” I applaud this Youbtube channel for not falling into the stereotype of being a ‘manly man’ and telling us you don’t have to have wrestle a bear to receive your man card! I believe it is our job as the next working class Americans to challenge these gender norms so our kids to grow up in a homogenized environment.


You Can’t Say That To A Girl

January 20th, 2015

My name is Michael Durr and I am junior at Longwood University. I am a Communication Studies major with a concentration in Public Relations and a minor in Business Administration. I am from Brandon, Mississippi and I came to Longwood to play for the men’s soccer team in which I am currently the captain of.  As for my professional goals,  I would like to be a sales representative for a company. This coming summer I landed an internship for a medical supply company. One important aspect of being a salesman is, of course, making great sales.

Men's soccer headshot

Men’s soccer headshot

With that being said, and with the classes I’ve taken here at Longwood such as Persuasion Theory and Public Speaking, I have harnessed specific skills in order to perform my dream job of making a sale. When I was being interviewed for this position, I was told that in this professional field you are required to make tough decisions and you must be able to handle yourself well under pressure. Being a captain of a Division 1 program has definitely prepared  me to do such. When you have 20+ individuals asking for direction, it undoubtedly adds pressure to one’s self. Not only do I have to be able to communicate with over 20 players, but of these individuals, roughly 40% speak English as their second language.  With this responsibility I have to make sure all the messages, on and off the field, are both precise and clear.

Being that soccer is one thing I have always been involved in, I have had many experiences where gender issues have come into play. Growing up, when I wasn’t playing in the game, I was either coaching or refereeing. When coaching you have to be very careful when it comes to differentiating between coaching boys or girls. When coaching boys you can get very animated and call them “a bunch of sissies!” But when you are coaching girls you have to be more careful because it doesn’t motivate them the same as boys. When speaking to girls you say something along the lines of, “That was good but maybe next time you should try this!” Whereas boys you can say, “What the heck Jimmy?!?” During this course I would love to learn how to communicate effectively between genders and to be aware of the social gender roles expectations that I may have not noticed before.

Hello world!

January 20th, 2015

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