Socialization is variable. It’s different in different places/cultures. In Saudi Arabia, men who are friends hold hands. In Denmark, they actively teach children empathy in schools and men don’t have the same disconnection from their emotions that US men have. Men are prone to violence due to anger being the only socially acceptable emotion for men in a patriarchy.

If we live in a time of violence, it is because we have a patriarchal social structure that values it as a way to maintain the social hierarchy. It’s what we demand of boys and men to demonstrate their masculinity, even as it drives male loneliness and disconnection, something that I have already indicated causes real pain.

Male rage is rooted in the collective self-alienation and isolation that is part and parcel of our culture of manhood. In her book “When Boys Become Boys,” Dr. Judy Chu of Stanford University documents how our sons are taught to hide their early capacity for being emotionally perceptive, articulate, and responsive. Starting in preschool, our young boys learn to align their behaviors with “the emotionally disconnected stereotype our culture projects onto them.”

Written by

Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store