About the Author
Outlook of the book
Perception of the human bodies
Attitudes within American culture
Current perception of males’ body
Ancient and current view of sexual organs
Women’s role in men’s behavior
Media influence on sexual behavior
TheMale Body: a new look at men in public and in private is the topic ofconsideration. Susan Bordo is accredited to the study. She is amodern feminist philosopher who dwells on cultural studies especiallypertaining the body. Most of her works contribute to the cultural,gender and feminist bodies. The Male Body: A New Look at Men inPublic and Private was done in 1999. As stated by the writer, thetext defines a cultural/personal examination of the male body from afemale’s perspective. Focus is shifted from examining female aswell as feminized bodies to assessing the male body from a womanpoint of view. In this text, Bordo considers the representation ofmen body in social channels of communication like advertisements,literature, and movies. She goes on to express how anxieties relatedto physical beauty and forms affect men. The assumption that concernsof physical form impact on women are disputed as entailed in thewritings. In depicting men in the twentieth century, she examines theattitudes surrounding the gay culture and the penis. There is a broadrange of criticism concerning male studies. Most critics cite theseparation between gender studies and male studies to be a hugeproblem. As a matter of fact, in transgender studies, scholars’question the relation between gender identity and men biology withinmasculinity readings. The paper will look to discuss more on thetopic and not necessarily the book. Frequently researchers base theirfindings mostly on female perspectives of the body. Only a handfulrevolve around male issues especially pertaining the body. In thatregard, it is okay to draw critics especially when the study is notwell discussed. The paper will relay some of the ideas drawn fromthis topic. Armed with savvy and wit, Susan elaborates the uncertainattitudes found within the American culture.
Thecultural mind towards male bodies is quite intricate, especiallyregarding the penis. There is a notion that size does not matter whenit comes to the penis. It is not the case in the current world. As amatter of fact, some people are rejected for either having a small,poorly shaped penis. Realistically looking at things, men havelimited power to design the shape of his penis. It is even harder todetermine the length. However, through perceptions inhibited withinour cultures, size and shape are taken into consideration. Humans aresex machines who work tirelessly to fulfill their sexual needs. Theshape and size of the penis are important to the women. They have tobe sexually satisfied, and that is the reason men indulge in variousactivities to please them. Sex has become a core component in anyrelation, and any limitation in the same can crumble therelationship. As much as culture does not view sex as a force behinda successful marriage, the same ideologies cannot be shared in thecurrent globe.
Inreality, should a woman accept a male with a small penis? Apart fromthat, can she persevere a poorly shaped penis? Such questions arisewhen accessing the male body from a woman’s perspective. Women arefond of talking about the masculinity of their men. The talks arequite diverse in various aspects of work like hairdressers amongothers. It is common for women to describe their men when in thecompany of each other. In such settings, they become moreknowledgeable and set benchmarks of how a real man should look. Inthat regard, they draw their ideas and heighten their expectations.Such acts are envisaged in culture. They make assumptions based onexpectations of the society. Women then end up judging their menbased on societal imaginations/expectations. If by any chance theirhusbands do not meet expectations mentioned during women talk, theymost likely cheat on them to feel the satisfaction.
Anotherperspective concerns men’s insecurity. Men in the 20thcentury have become quite insecure with their bodies just like womenhave been for some time. Over the course of human development, menhave become increasingly concerned with their bodies regarding looks.In past centuries, women were more concerned with their bodieswhereas men had no much interest in outward looks. However, withtime, the perceptions have changed, and men have become even moreinterested in the outward appearance than their female counterparts.The above can be evidenced in the various entertainment media such asmovies, sport among others. As demonstrated in current adverts, menare influenced. They then partake some products so as to improveappearance. Men advertisements have increased over the years. In someinstances, men even want to look prettier than their ladies. Suchbehaviors have been continuously embedded in our cultures to anextent that they seem reasonable. Contrary to previous behaviors orrather cultures, men in the twentieth century are more concerned withtheir outward looks in a means to showcase themselves to the ladiesor even other men. Such behaviors have increased the levels ofinsecurity and same-sex relations. Women do not feel safe when theirmen are not within their vicinity. They can be easily swayed intohaving affairs outside the relationships.
Men’sbody has been changing perceptions all through the years. In thepublic eye, an exposed vagina depicts vulnerability. On the contrary,exposing the penis portrays power. In recent fashions, there is atendency of men exposing their nudity in various ways. For instance,wearing underwear while doing commercials presenting theirmasculinity in the process. Such adverts are greeted withappreciation for the sturdy body. The person is most appreciated dueto the features of his body. If a woman was to do the same, there isa notion that she may be quite vulnerable to expose her beautifulself to the public. Reception defers when both males and femalesreveal their bodies. The assertions have been instilled within ourcultures, and it has become part of life. Apart from adverts,artistic works seem to champion male nudity with no apparentdisliking of the same. However, when it comes to females, such nuditycan rarely be appreciated. Women nudity gets different judgment whencompared to male nudity. People change behaviors, changing the way oflife that results in a changed culture. The current generation adoptspractices of the past generation making it a culture. As per thedescriptions of culture, it is the way of life that is mainly passedon from generation to generation. When a changed behavior is acceptedwithin a society, it grows on to become a culture. In that respect,men have the propensity of adopting practices that at some point inthe past were left to women alone. The reasons for these are alsoquite vast.
Thesexual organs have lost meaning. Current generations are obsessedwith potency in bed to an overwhelming extent. Men are like machinesin a sense that they are more inclined to perform like robots in bedto please their partners. If a man deems himself as his penis, thenexperiences impotence, there is a likelihood that he would sufferimmensely psychologically. In other words, the more a man thinks ofhimself as superior in bed, and it is not the case, the chances arehigh that he may have a psychological breakdown. It is natural thatanxiety and depression may be detrimental to the person. Losing thesole meaning of our body parts plays a huge role in the mentalmeltdown. Men put themselves under enormous pressure to perform inbed rather than show fertility. The sex organs are nowadays dedicatedto pleasure rather than productivity. The result is a disjointedhuman nature with limited or no sense of direction.
Womenhave the potential to control men regarding sexual behavior. Sincethe advent of sex, men are depicted as inferior to women when itcomes to sexual matters. The powerless nature of men can be seen fromthe psychology of porn. Men happen to be so incensed by women nudityto an extent that they indulge in such behaviors. Women controlmasculine sexuality and hence manhood itself. They can penetrate menpartiality arousing desire in the process which is unreciprocated,humiliating the man. Pornography develops a fantasy area where themale body does not face any rejection. Women, on the other hand, aresubject to accepting any person. Even in the current world, women canaccept any man though some aspects have to be fulfilled. In thatcase, women through their features control the male behavior drivingthem into various deeds. Some opt to indulge in porn so as to quenchtheir underwhelming thirst. It does not, however, quench the utmostthirst.
Firstforward to the current world, behavior towards sexuality has shiftedtremendously. The religious purpose of the sex organs was typicallyfor recreation. Though inception of pleasure does not inhibit theprior purpose, its meaning has been trumped down. People are so muchincensed with sex such that it has lost its meaning. Men have toengage in a lot of activities to better their performance in bed.Women, on the other hand, are choosy in that they want the best whenit comes to sexual matters. A man is hence judged by his penis andnot balls.
Theoverwhelming desire for sexual satisfaction has also resulted inother sex offenses. For instance, sexual harassment especially rapehas been on the rise. After watching adverts, men can be aroused andeven indulge in porn. They garner strong thirst which they relaythrough sexual crimes. It is the reason rape cases are continuouslyon the rise. When a male does not get a channel to relieve himself,there are high chances that he may decide to rape innocentindividuals. As much as the culture of doing things is changing,adoption of other aspects is injurious to the society.
Howthe body is perceived, matters a lot currently. When a woman islooking for a guy to date, she is usually drawn to the one with asexy body. In the latter years, men were immensely attracted to awoman through her shape and other body parts. The women rarely lookedat these elements. However, nowadays, even women use the body partsto define how their men should look like. The perceptions among menand women have quite frankly led to complex relationships. It mattersa lot how we view each other since depression issues emanate fromlack of appreciation.
Peopleare so much obsessed with outward looks as well as human body parts.Men are continuously developing a woman like the consciousness oftheir body. They are also so much incensed with sexual performance toan extent that they partake drugs to make them sexually strong. Thehigh demand from women to have heavily built men who are also strongin bed has exerted a lot of pressure on males. Any individual fallingshort of the necessities always feels demoralized. The chances ofsuch men to suffer mental breakdown are quite high.
Ifthe current world could return to the previous perceptions of sex,many people could benefit from the same. Males should desist fromacting like sexual robots and females from demanding too much. Thecontemporary attitudes towards male beauty and masculinity areunnecessary. Also, the gay influence has contributed profoundly tothese pervasive attitudes. The fact that men are doing much to lookbeautiful has made the women feel insecure. Imagine your man modelingand showcasing his masculinity in public. It seems right to thecurrent generations, but women who are in relationships with suchbecome insecure. Apart from a few celebrities, most are continuouslychanging their partners even after marriage. The rates of divorcesare also high, and they seem to go higher daily.
Bordo, Susan. The Male Body: a new look at men in public and in private. Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2000. Document.