Free essay on Masculinity:
Masculinity (from Lat. Masculinus, male) is a complex of physical, mental, and behavioral features (secondary sexual characteristics), considered as the male (that is outwardly distinguish male from female or male from female animals)
Masculinity is a concept built based on a set of characteristics and behaviors, which are generally considered to be typical or appropriate for men. The degree of perceived masculinity may vary and can therefore be described, such as “more masculine” or “the most masculine.” Its opposite is usually expressed as “unmanly” or “feminine.” A synonym of masculinity is virility (from the Latin vir, meaning a man). The notion of masculinity changes over time and is dependent on changes in society (see, for example, gender and social construction).
To address the question of what is masculinity, the primary assumption of alterity is necessary: all the signs are either masculine or feminine. In addition, this definition is affected by the presence of social stereotypes and the lack of a neutral neuter gender.
There are different concepts of masculinity, which range from essentialist to socio-constructivist. Essentialist approach examines masculinity as a result of biological differences between men and women, while socio-constructivist defines masculinity in terms of gender expectations.
During the 1980s and 1990s, the scientific study of masculinity developed very quickly in the U.S. As a result of this development, masculinity became associated with various forms of social discrimination. The theoretical approach embraced feminist models for their studies, such as the theories of the social construction of gender.
Some experts noted that masculinity and femininity cannot be thought of separately. For them, it is above all in opposition to the female than the male can be constructed and expressed. In this context, femininity is the antithesis of masculinity, to be a woman, then, is not to be a man and being a man is above all refuse “naturally” feminine attribute. Masculinity and femininity should be thought relationally as the result of a diacritical construction, both theoretical and practical.
Students writing their essays on masculinity should remember that there is at least for main concept of the origins of masculinity and femininity.
Proponents of biological determinism explain behavioral and psychological differences between men by the theory of biological dimorphism, indicating the existence of relevant fundamental differences between males and females of any species (especially primates).
Psychoanalytic model considers the differences of male and female characters an inevitable consequence of peculiarities of the sexual identity of the child in the process of interaction with parents (especially with mother).
Socio-psychological models believe masculinity and femininity derived from existing social gender roles, norms, and stereotypes that are determined primarily as socio-cultural and implanted to individuals in the process of socialization.
Postmodern perspective stresses that masculinity and femininity are separate settings for each individual, rather than binary oppositions, and act in the context of race, class, ethnic, and other differences. Postmodernists put forward the idea of the existence of multiple masculinities that are constructed and represented only in a specific cultural context.
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