There has been a recent trend in the media of stories focused on the need to redefine masculinity. After recent articles including the Death of Macho, the End of Men and Men’s lib, it’s clear that society has begun to question old conceptions of masculinity. Largely, this can be regarded as a good thing.
The problem with these articles, much like the previous article that I mentioned, is that they focus on material standards to quantify masculinity (or they promote this idea of men versus women). Redefining masculinity should be about more than just men helping more around the house or men accepting more historically feminine characteristics. Redefining masculinity should be based around what it means to be redefining humanity. By limiting ourselves to just redefining masculinity and femininity we are again creating a false gender dichotomy. As the document explains, “women and men are taught false conceptions about who they are, what their true nature is, and what conduces to their happiness and fulfillment.” That’s why these articles use false conceptions of self to try to define who we are. People often do not know from where to seek true knowledge of the self. If people have the opportunity to understand their true nature through the acquisition of self-knowledge and not be limited by the forces acting in society then we can move past discussions that focus on redefining gender-specific terms.
How can social values and structures premised on false conceptions of human nature be critically examined and reformed?