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> Stereotypes, Gender roles
Witless
post Sep 18 2005, 09:26 AM
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I noticed more and more people making assumptions based on nothing, infact even worse are people making assumptions in contrary to the evidence at hand.

Examples are when girls I know are in my sacred personal space (my house before you guys think anything different).
They instantly assume I cannot butter bread without being given an hour. Or that I wouldn't know how to use a washing machine. Or that irons are foreign objects to me. No offense to any people on these boards that know me in real life, but I'm more domesticated than almost any girl I know (except my mother who's scary). I infact am the only person I know well that actually hangs his clothes up on clothes hangers.

I'm not up to date with all the new terms, but a quick search online pulled up the term 'metrosexual' (thank you wikipedia), Originally it meant :
QUOTE
"an urban male of any sexual orientation who has a strong aesthetic sense and spends a great deal of time and money on his appearance and lifestyle. He is the fashion-conscious target audience of men's magazines"


But has now evolved into :
QUOTE
"metrosexual has congealed into something more digestible: a heterosexual male who is in touch with his feminine side"


Right, so I'm confused now... (genuinely) an would like somethings cleared up,
Let's assume I will go along with the more evolved meaning, the in touch with feminine side one. This means what? that Any man that understands independence enough to be able to take care of themself, and doesn't live within one's own filth is more feminine.
It also assumes women are always clean and tidy people.. well slap me silly and call me a wally. There was me thinking that it seems almost reversed with a lot of people I know! Have I just become that optimistic to believe tidyness and hygiene are independant of gender.
Have I suddenly become that detached and naive that I believe female house wife, and male bread winner stereotype were a thing of past within that majority of the first world above the poverty line?

And then there's this :
QUOTE
"In some circles, however, metrosexual is used to refer to a closeted gay man. This usage developed as a rejection of the idea that style-conscious men could be straight, and as a focus on the cultural cues by which gay men have sometimes been identified."


This one I thought I'd pull up because I've been identified as gay multiple times for multiple reasons, Normally whenever I've been less that 100% crude, or haven't thrown myself at anything with a skirt and vague smell of cheap perfume.

I have specific questions that people that are more socially aware might be able to answer.
Are most guys as people assume I am before they know me?
Why do people feel the need for a new label that seems so vague like "metrosexual".
Do you guys believe metrosexuals actually exist? Or is just a new buzz word?
Are most of the people you know genuinely similar to the gender roles of past?

Last but not least, considering we're now in the age of world maintenence, and not the age of survival does maintenence of those old gender roles seem important, or becoming a little redundant. Should be go back to enforcing them (as was once the case), or try something new, and actively break them down further?

ps: I understand that in different countries of the world, there are different situations, but I'm speaking from the point of view of someone living in a first world country, that's not below the poverty line.

Discuss!


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LoLo
post Sep 18 2005, 03:23 PM
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Strereotypes are always fun aren't they?

As far as on the meterosexual line, I think it's just a label people made up to make them feel better for more men not fitting into the stereotype that is out there. Society seems to need to label things to make them feel better about things, like just because someone sticks the label of "weird" on me that they can now deal with the fact that I don't do things that are "normal." Who is normal anyway?

I'm with you that cleanliness and hygene have nothing to do with gender, it's more due to the person themselves. Myself, I'm often rather slobbish, but it's more to keep people out of my personal space.

If it makes you feel any better, my brother knows how to cook, clean, do laundry and all that fun stuff, as well as the stereotypical male things, and my sister and myself know how to build things, fix things while still doing those stereotypical female things.

One of my own pet peeves are the number of people that think women aren't strong. This is something that got to me at work yesterday, and often gets to me there. I work at a store that sells a lot of furniture and it's a purely female staff. Often times when we're moving one of the pieces people ask us if we have a man on staff to move it for us. It makes me mad because I am strong, as are all the other women I work with, and we can handle it. Occasionally we will get men jumping in and trying to help and we have to tell them no because if they hurt themselves we're liable and we know what we're doing. I can't count the number of times when I was putting something together with a rubber mallet (because it was just a pop in place type of thing but needed a little bit of help), that a man has come up and grabbed the mallet out of my hand, as if I can't handle hitting this thing. One time the man even broke the merchandise, which had just sold, so I had to give the customer a discount so she could get it fixed. </rant>


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Phyllis
post Sep 18 2005, 05:50 PM
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I know some people, male and female, who cannot cook or clean to save their lives. It's divided pretty equally between the two genders - among people I know, anyway. I just never understood that. I don't plan on having children, but if I did I would most certainly teach them how to take care of themselves so they weren't constantly depending on someone else. I don't think being able to do those things makes you stereotypically "masculine" or "feminine"...it just makes sense to know how to be independent.

As for the metrosexual thing...I think it's a bunch of nonsense. Though I do know of some guys that fall under that description. They wear foundation and concealer, use straightening irons on their (extremely short) hair, and packed 29 different outfits for a 30 day trip to Canada. Although...I wouldn't really call them "feminine" so much as "high maintenance and silly." I mean really, I have to wonder how the hair straightening works out without burning their scalp! Mine is halfway down my back, and I manage to burn myself sometimes.

Most people I'm friends with now don't really fit into those gender roles. I can't think of any stereotypically "housewifey" stuff I can do that my male friends can't do...except maybe sewing. Though, to be fair, they do try...and I know just as many girls who can't sew well either.


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believe
post Sep 18 2005, 11:46 PM
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I'm (as usual) somewhere in the middle. I think stereotypes exist because they fit a lot of people. The problem is when they become static and there's a definitely expectation to conform. I suspect that some of America's sexuality issues come from the fact that its so rigidly defined. Especially as whats proper gay, straight, ect activites/interests, ect. The strictness and little allowance for individual preferences are what make it harmful, not the idea that a lot of men or women behave certain ways.

I'm a classic girl mostly. I like girl things (if not hopefully not to the point of being silly) and I like it when men lift heavy objects for me, offer to kill bugs and so on. >.> That might be bad to admit, but I like guy being protective-ness to a healthy point. I also think people can be really stupid about that sort of thing. If a person means well, like a guy trying to get the door for you, its -stupid- to blast them. A person is trying to be kind, other women have indicated they like and making it a feminist issue with a stranger is asinine. There's a difference between an a friendly guy trying to be nice (if maybe overeager) and someone being condescending.

Not that I'm saying people that think they should do your job for you isn't annoying, Lolo. That'd get to me after the 80th time. There's logic limits to things and stereotypes often surpass those.


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PsychWardMike
post Sep 19 2005, 03:01 AM
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I don't get gender stereotyping. I'm a guy and I love taking it like a bitch!


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Sir Psycho Sexy
post Sep 19 2005, 08:05 AM
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QUOTE (PsychWardMike @ Sep 19 2005, 03:01 AM)
I don't get gender stereotyping.  I'm a guy and I love taking it like a bitch!
*


....so, you're a camp guy? Is that a stereotype or a character trait? Both? ohmy.gif

Like Lolo said, there's a stereotype for everything, and yes, a lot of them exist for a reason. How many people have come from a family where the mother has done a majority of the housework, cook, clean, iron etc? I know it doesn't happen in every house, and less so now, because we're so into breaking stereotypes (e.g. women getting better career jobs). I don't get why people are so bothered about being defined as a stereotype, it doesn't devalue what or who you are, it's simply descriptive, even if sometimes it's innaccurate.


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Jonman
post Sep 19 2005, 08:57 AM
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I could waffle on for ages about how modern feminism and anti-discrimination demasculinising the modern male, causing an overcompensational backlash, but frankly, I think it's gash.

'Metrosexual' is a prime example of gender stereotyping that's brought about purely by media. I'm a damn good cook, I've washed and laundered myself for years. Does that make me any less of a man? Of course it doesn't. If anything, it makes me moreof a man, in the old sense of a man being self-sufficient and able to take care of himself. But because Heat magazine has pictures of Beckham in a sarong, suddenly, any man who gives more than a passing glance to the contents of his wardrobe while getting dressed in the morning is 'a bit gay'.

It's ludicrous frankly. Even more so as the current social trend is moving towards people living alone far more often. In that event, a man has a choice, he can be a slob, or a metrosexual. The middle ground between the two is rapidly disappearing as more and more everyday activities incorrectly identify you as a metrosexual.

"Oooh, my boyfriend cooked me breakfast this morning, and did the washing up, then he took ages in the bathroom"
"Are you sure he's not gay?"
"No, he's just a bit met"


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Faerieryn
post Sep 19 2005, 04:24 PM
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Steroetypes irritate me. Why? Because I tend to conform to them!! I moved inot my new flat for the first time last week. What was the first thing I told my boyfriend I'd do for him (aside from the obvious to all those with filthy minds like mine!)? I told him I'd cook him a meal!!! I am quite feminine and I will openly admit to being a weak female (I get the guys at the petrol station to fill my tyres!!) I like it when a guy opens the door for me. Thing is though, I think the main reason I conform to stereotypes is because a) I AM small and weak. I like guys opening doors for me because I have a tendency to get squashed by them. I like cooking. That is who I am and cool.gif because I just don't give a sh!t. I remember looking at friends of mine when I was 16 and thinking that they tried so hard NOT to conform that they ended up conforming to the idea of what a non conformist should be!!! Sterotypes exist because at some point in time a large majority of the population were like that. I wouldn't expect anyone to conform to anything that they didn't feel comfortable with and I do own more power tools than most blokes AND my boyfriend can iron when I can't!


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Calantyr
post Sep 19 2005, 05:25 PM
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I like sterotypes.

Saves me the effort of having to get to know people.

Edit: First time I heard the term metrosexual I thought it referred to people getting their jollies on the Circle Line (London Underground for the uninitiated).

Edit: Yarrr! I be slipping but Davey Jones' nae be havin' me yet! Thank ye mightyly young lass.


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Forever Unknown
post Sep 19 2005, 05:29 PM
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QUOTE (Calantyr @ Sep 19 2005, 05:25 PM)
I like sterotypes.

Saves me the effort of having to get to know people.

Edit: First time I heard the term metrosexual I thought it referred to people getting their jollies on the Circle Line (London Underground for the uninitiated).
*


Where's your 'Yarrrrr'?


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elphaba2
post Sep 19 2005, 07:32 PM
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I recently went on a road trip with a bunch of people my age, and was the only girl. To me, because I've known these people for ages, I didn't think twice about the fact that they have external genetilia, but it seemed that everywhere we stopped, someone asked how I was doing as the only girl. "You keeping those dirty boys in line?" "Doing all the cooking, eh?", et cetera. Which was ridiculous. Utter ridiculousness, magnified by the fact that all of us split chores (cooking, laundry, and so on) and the best laundry person was the best because he has to keep his football uniform tidy and his mother got sick of washing it for him. So you have this traditional athletic, strong person doing laundry (and doing it well, I might add!), which, somehow, can't be comprehended by all the waitresses in Newfoundland. It was a very odd endeavor to try and dismantle their beliefs about gender roles, so eventually we gave up on it and consumed food instead.

QUOTE (Calantyr @ Sep 19 2005, 01:25 PM)
Edit: First time I heard the term metrosexual I thought it referred to people getting their jollies on the Circle Line (London Underground for the uninitiated).
*


Ack! I thought I was the only one who thought that!


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Astarael
post Sep 20 2005, 01:52 AM
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Stereotypes do exist because a lot of people acted like that (or people thought they did.) I don't really mind people stereotyping me a bit for being a girl. I can open my own doors and take care of myself, but I've no objection to letting a guy kill the bugs or lift something heavy if I would pull a muscle whilst moving it. What truly irritates me is people insisting on clinging to their stereotypes despite repeated evidence to the contrary. I like to belch on occasion. It amuses most people at silly parties and it's a funny way to relieve gas. I really dislike conversations that run like this:
*Guys belching to see who's the loudest and laughing*
Me: *belches louder than all the little wusses combined without even drinking anything bubbly and smirks*
*I get one or two high-fives and a lot of laughs*
Random guy: *looks bewildered* You just belched.
Me: Duh. Want any tips? *grins*
Guy: But you're a GIRL.
Me: And this is a problem for you because...?
Guy: *looks frustrated* But girls aren't supposed to belch! They can't!
Me: *getting annoyed* Who told you that? Is it the Twelfth Commandment or something? I just did belch, so I obviously can.
Guy: *grumbling* You aren't supposed to. Girls don't do that kind of thing.
Me: But I do, ergo some girls DO belch and "that kind of thing." *rolls eyes, belches again, competes with guys, ignores ignorant detractor*
Guy: *continues muttering "not right" and things of that nature whilst everyone else is having fun*
I can understand the basic response, but it would help if everyone kept an open mind.


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Bragi
post Sep 21 2005, 07:52 PM
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Twelfth Commandment? Does that follow the eleventh, which as I understand reads, "Do not get caught"?

Re: stereotyping...

There are two males who work in our office, in a staff of ten. I'm sure you can guess who it is that is always sent to fetch anything remotely considered to be heavy, and who were roped into doing most of the lifting when the office was recently rearranged. Somewhat irritating, to say the least.
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Astarael
post Sep 21 2005, 08:58 PM
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The Eleventh Commandment is pretty much accepted among Christians as "Love your neighbor as you love yourself." Thus anything that I want people to do gets labelled the Twelfth Commandment. It confuses people, but it's funny. smile.gif


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PsychWardMike
post Sep 22 2005, 12:07 AM
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Actually, "Love thy neighbor as thyself" is the supreme commandment right after "Thou shalt love thy God with all thy heart, mind, body, and soul." Those two really supercede all, and if they are followed make all others redundant.


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bryden42
post Sep 22 2005, 06:01 PM
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heres one for the gender stereotyping pot.

I have found that i have monthly cycles! (please dont laugh), My wife concurs. I tend to be less able to deal with things in a non aggressive way around the full moon (this can be read that I get really pissy and aggressive).

Now when women have their monthly cycles this is to be embraced as femininity working it's wonders, A beautiful and natural thing (so im told) it is all the hormones fault!
What about my hormones, when i get aggresive i'm told i'm being juvenile! when i get aggresive i'm told that i should buck my ideas up. What happened to beautiful natural masculinity?

just wondering?


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Calantyr
post Sep 22 2005, 06:14 PM
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It is a commonly held observation that the cycles of the moon affect BOTH genders, so this isn't really surprising. During full moons I tend to be more aggressive and bite more than usual.

Just claim sexual inequality. biggrin.gif


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artist.unknown
post Sep 24 2005, 04:07 AM
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I confess, I've gone all domesticated lately. I mean, I cook (without setting things on fire! That cardboard bit isn't supposed to stay underneath the frozen pizza once in the oven, kids!), I clean, I do laundry. Next thing you know I'll be *shudder* wearing women's clothing.

Gender stereotypes are a bunch of hooey. Mike-O knows he is the ladykin in our relationship. Though he could break little artist in two if he poked her rigorously with his pinky finger. tongue.gif


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