March 9, 2011

The Man Box and The Boy Code

Tony Porter is an educator and activist who is internationally recognized for his effort to end violence against women. In the video below, recorded as part of the incredible series by TED Conferences ©, Tony comes up with another description of the tragic and destructive socialization of men that he calls, The Man Box.

A similar, but boy version of the, be tough, don't show your pain, man up, don't be a girl, and just handle it all by yourself . . . template was described by William Pollack in his book Real Boys: Rescuing Our Sons from the Myths of Boyhood. Pollack called it The Boy Code.

Awareness of these stereotypes is the first step on the path to healing ourselves, raising better sons, and then doing something about what's being taught and how men are being portrayed in the media. I'd be curious to know how close Tony Porters experience of being a man (and raising a son) parallels your own. This is important food for thought for all genders!






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