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Posts tagged "Men"

Please Help the Cause Against (Middle Age Male) Loneliness

Please Help the Cause Against (Middle Age Male) Loneliness

The plan was to hit some tennis balls before heading to dinner. Take advantage of the beautiful weather, maybe grab a drink al fresco on the way to the restaurant. Sounds awesome, I nodded, and I meant it. They always have a blast together, my wife and her friends.

I didn’t feel left out. Nor did I begrudge putting the kids down on my own. I was glad this was happening. So too, I’d wager, were the other dads involved. But that didn’t mean we’d follow suit. Occasionally we talk about organizing a male-only outing, but nothing has ever materialized. Which,…

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Another Week Ends: More Underachieving Males, Baffling Temptations, Upper East Side Claustrophobia, John Gray, Star Wars, and Vocation

Another Week Ends: More Underachieving Males, Baffling Temptations, Upper East Side Claustrophobia, John Gray, Star Wars, and Vocation

1. After Dave’s post on male problems this week, The Economist published a long-form essay about the plight of blue-collar men in the West. The pay for men with only a high-school diploma fell by 21% (real terms) between 1979 and 2013, as one of the clear male advantages is brawn, which is less relevant than ever when it comes to earnings. Moreover, these men may not have studied feminism in college, but they’ve found themselves in a world increasingly affected by it:

Their ideas of the world and their place in it are shaped by old assumptions about the special role and status due…

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Feministic Fallout? More on Underachieving Boys and Gracious G.A.W.F.s

Feministic Fallout? More on Underachieving Boys and Gracious G.A.W.F.s

There’s a telling scene at the end of Whit Stillman’s film Barcelona (above). One of the characters remarks about how wonderful it is to marry someone from another country. Alienating traits, instead of being taken personally, can be chalked up to national differences. As in, “must be a Spanish thing”, or “in Japanese culture, that’s just how they operate”. The scene has been playing in my head these past couple of weeks as various articles about the state of gender relations in America have crossed my desk. One wonders if, in leaving behind certain gender expectations and roles, we have…

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Over-Confident Men and Underestimating Women: Some Thoughts on Shame and Leadership

Over-Confident Men and Underestimating Women: Some Thoughts on Shame and Leadership

Back in May I read an article in the Atlantic Monthly that rocked me. “The Confidence Gap” addressed the gaping hole of women in top leadership positions. I read it expecting the usual issues: poor math scores, smaller salaries, always feeling behind everyone else. And certainly, this article provided plenty of those sad and disappointing assessments.

As a woman, some of the information was also incredibly helpful. We do not take chances the way men do. We underestimate ourselves. Culture’s need to shape us into “good girls” does permanent damage when it comes to necessary risk taking. But the thing that bothered…

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Underachieving Boys and the Masks Men Wear

Underachieving Boys and the Masks Men Wear

I was bowled over a few years ago at the graduation of a family member from a high-profile college. Before the seniors walked up to receive their diplomas, a number of awards were announced. Academic awards and service awards and all-around achievement awards, about ten in all. As is normally the case at such functions, I was only half tuned-in, dreaming about some rare Beach Boys records I was thinking about ordering or something. So I didn’t notice what was happening until about six proud winners had shuffled up to the stage. All of them were young women. In fact,…

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Another Week Ends: OWL Pushback, Antihero Armstrong, Pearls for Gleason, New McCartney, Ambitious Slackers, Space Cowboys, Food-Profiling, and Dilbert's Failure

Another Week Ends: OWL Pushback, Antihero Armstrong, Pearls for Gleason, New McCartney, Ambitious Slackers, Space Cowboys, Food-Profiling, and Dilbert’s Failure

1. Yesterday I mentioned the name-dropping op-ed that appeared on the Washington Post, Tullian Tchividjian’s “The Missing Message in Today’s Churches.” It’s fine little piece, notable as much for where it was published as what it is saying, most of which will be familiar to readers of this site:

“Too many churches perpetuate the impression that Christianity is primarily concerned with morality. As my colleague David Zahl has written, ‘Christianity is not about good people getting better. It is about real people coping with their failure to be good.’ The heart of the Christian faith is Good News not good behavior….

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Another Week Ends: Colbert's Gratitude, Eagleton's Jesus, Silent Men, Parenthood, Buck, Twilight Sparkle, and Sendak on Blake

Another Week Ends: Colbert’s Gratitude, Eagleton’s Jesus, Silent Men, Parenthood, Buck, Twilight Sparkle, and Sendak on Blake

1. Midway through The New York Times Magazine’s lengthy profile of America’s favorite all-around man-of-excellence Stephen Colbert, a bomb drops. To comment on his words might detract from their power. Holy Smokes, ht NM:

In 1974, when Colbert was 10, his father, a doctor, and his brothers Peter and Paul, the two closest to him in age, died in a plane crash while flying to a prep school in New England. “There’s a common explanation that profound sadness leads to someone’s becoming a comedian, but I’m not sure that’s a proven equation in my case,” he told me. “I’m not bitter…

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Man-Children and the Women That (Don't) Love Them

Man-Children and the Women That (Don’t) Love Them

When did The Wall Street Journal become the go-to place for provocative social commentary? An editorial by Kay Hymowitz entitled “Where Have All The Good Men Gone?” has been raising plenty of eyebrows this past week, doubling as a gender specific follow-up to this past summer’s landmark NY Times article about “The Age 30 Deadline” (not to mention last week’s conversation about high-school wrestling). Both articles explore the identity politics of “extended adolescence”/”pre-adulthood” in fascinating ways, and both hit on the various contradictions involved in the culture of self-definition. There might be a slight note of “woe-are-they” buried in here,…

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