Thursday, March 1, 2012

Violence and Masculinity

As I sit here and watch my husband play his new video game 'Batman: Arkham City, I can't help but notice all of the violence that is taking place in it. I have to laugh some about how much of it can related to what we are learning in Popular Cultures about how men are taught to be seen as those tough guys. In a way, I'm marching it up against my hubby, the game, and how every time he can't beat a super villian like Mr. Freeze or the Joker, he just keeps on trying kind of like how men should 'never give up'. Now I really don't see my hubby as a tough guy, more like a big soft teddy bear, but he may say differently.
So what is the deal with men and violence? Why do men like things that go boom at the end of every movie? Here is a simple and yet a somewhat stupid answer, they just do. Men want to be seen as tough people and not as 'girls'. Men like to walk around, appearing tough and like to be in control of things. What we really need to think about is how women can be violent as well but it doesn't cause a reaction as much as it would with men.
I'll use another example towards my thoughts on that. A few years ago, I work at a local HyVee in the not so great part of town, when two young black women had an all out catfight over some guy in the parking lot in my line. That being my second week of just starting there, I was a little shock about how those two women behaved and was a little rattled by it all. I have never seen anything like that before, having come from a small town and never really knowing what life in the big city was like. Since then, I have quit that job after two years of working there and not really happy with it, I ended up getting married and moving. 

Anyway, men and violence. They are taught to behave like tough guys and even see women as the 'weaker sex' though beating women down, either though words or hitting them. I believe that this is both true and untrue. At a young age, boys are taught to act like tough guys. This could lead to violence in schools and school shootings like the most recent one in Ohio. Many of the shootings always had a male student or at times, there were male teachers who would cause the violence.

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