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masculinity

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Our American view of masculinity has been constructed by the media and perpetuated through dominance. These ideas are instilled in us at such a young age, which is why we see adolescent boys act this way. We are socialized to feel pressure to conform to gender norms because we are taught to insult or degrade those who are different. The video “Tough Guise” was great to watch after reading this article because they are directly related. The video just shows how these stigmas aren’t just present in junior high but to the male population as a whole. The article also argues that the word fag is used to discipline young boys who are not being masculine enough. For example if a boy is acting too weak or wants to talk about feelings, or anything for that matter, that can be seen as feminine actions, the boy is then called a fag so that he knows he is being feminine and he needs to “man up.” The boys are being raised with the idea that the norm is for a man to be manly and a women to be feminine, but to act any other way is wrong. This is why they use the word fag to make sure that they are all acting manly enough, and if someone isn’t acting manly enough then they are called a fag to make sure that they correct there behavior. The argument that I found the most convincing is the one where fag is used as discipline for not being manly enough.
The most convincing argument or idea Pascoe brought up was the hot potato theory. He explains that when a boy is called a fag he quickly turns it around to call someone else a fag. He must deny it, and quickly find some reason to call another boy a fag for fear of being the last one labeled a fag. Pascoe says that the label is temporary and can be deterred if thrown to someone else to prove masculinity.

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