Saturday, December 20, 2008

Tough Guise: Violence, Media & the Crisis in Masculinity

Interesting video on the labels of masculinity that keep boys and men locked into unhealthy definitions of what it means to be a man. [This is a review version of the film (full length).] Here is the nine minute trailer:

Obviously, the media is complicit in all of this. As consumers of this cultural media, we contribute to our own imprisonment. The Media Education Foundation has a great collection of films on this topic,several of which specifically address masculinity.

Here is the statement from the creator of this video:
While the social construction of femininity has been widely examined, the dominant role of masculinity has until recently remained largely invisible. Tough Guise is the first educational video geared toward college and high school students to systematically examine the relationship between pop-cultural imagery and the social construction of masculine identities in the U.S. at the dawn of the 21st century.

In this innovative and wide-ranging analysis, Jackson Katz argues that widespread violence in American society, including the tragic school shootings in Littleton, Colorado, Jonesboro, Arkansas, and elsewhere, needs to be understood as part of an ongoing crisis in masculinity.

This exciting new media literacy tool-- utilizing racially diverse subject matter and examples-- will enlighten and provoke students (both males and females) to evaluate their own participation in the culture of contemporary masculinity.

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