Study of Manhood in America

A Study of Manhood in America
When one looks at masculinity, one thinks of power: power, strength, courageousness, valor and fearlessness. These traits define those (people) as masculine or manly, whereas the opposites of these traits define those (people) as feminine and weak. Someone who looks at masculinity in America, as Michael S. Kimmel did in his book: “Manhood in America: A Cultural History”; can see that masculinity takes various ways, shapes and forms. Kimmel, who is a sociologist at Stony Brook University, studies masculinity from a feminist prospective. From manly displays of the male body to sports and politics in America; manhood or masculinity in America can be defined by what we see.
      Manhood in America can be looked at through a variety of ways. The first way that Kimmel looked at was the physical aspect: through the male body. It was Kimmel, who explained that women were not the only people looking at the male body. Men were looking at their bodies too. Feminism which had embellished into women a sense of power, were looking at men’s bodies… (272). According to Kimmel, “men’s efforts to prove masculinity through bodily display would reach a fever pitch in the 1990’s…. into the new millennium” (272). But the fact is that with a “relentless economic squeeze of working men” (272) with a new “economic squeeze on middle- and even upper-middle-class men” (272) meant joblessness, layoffs, etc. Essentially, the male body “were of decreasing utility” (272). The economic squeeze coupled with increasing standards of masculinity, caused “many men to experience…. ‘Muscle Dysmorphia,’- the belief that one is insufficiently muscular” (273). It was Allan G. Johnson, who wrote in his article: “What Is This Thing Called Patriarchy?” which is a selection from his 2005 book “Privilege, Power, and Difference”;
          Men are assumed (and expected) to be in control at all times, to be unemotional (except for anger and rage), to present themselves as...