Blog 8: Group Project Research

#MeTooK12 is a hashtag that created by the national nonprofit Stop Sexual Assault in Schools (SSAIS.org). The reason why this campaign was made was to motivate encourages victims of sexual harassment and sexual assault by class mates or school staff to share their experiences while they attend K-12 schools.For those who do not know what K-12 schools are,K-12 is a term used in the United States of America ,Canada and some other countries to identify grades from kinder garden until before college.

Esther Warkov, Executive Director, Stop Sexual Assault in Schools

Home

Stop Sexual Assault in Schools is a nonprofit organization that started because the daughter of the owner of this organization got sexually assaulted in a multi-day school field trip by a peer. After finding out the mother talked to the school and saw that they were not paying lot of attention to the incident. Later on, after doing some research the victim’s mother found out that the school ignored a few other rape events as well as her daughter’s.This is when the mother took the situation in her own hands and brought justice to her child.This is also when she started this campaign to bring awareness to such events.

Blog 5: Gender Equity in Aboriginal Cultures

Gender relations in aboriginal cultures were not something flat or static – they vary from culture to culture, reaching from the egalitarian to hierarchical. In almost all cases, though, the structure of society was influenced by needs of survival. Hunter gatherer societies required men and women to often perform the same tasks, thus making them egalitarian.
In many cases, even if men were the more dominant party in general societal relations – like positions of leadership – lineage was traced matrilineally. There were also cases of so-called “two-spirit” people who bent what we would consider traditional gender norms by theoretically accommodating both in one body, making both men and women interconnected.

In many ways these societies differed from traditional Western culture, which was far more masculine dominated. One could argue that the reason for this was that women did not need to perform tasks necessary for survival like they did in aboriginal cultures, but were rather representations of status, useful homemakers, or symbolic tokens in political alliance. Men asserted clear control over women and when these Westerners noticed that not to be the case amongst the aboriginals, they were often alarmed. How can they consider women their equals when male Westerners viewed themselves as superior to women? This naturally led to some cultural conflict.


Our modern culture is in many ways moving more towards what seems to have existed with the aboriginal people in that men and women can have more equal roles and equal contribution in society.  While we are still a male dominated culture, women can hold positions of power, take ownership of wealth, and demand respect. 

BLOG 1: Feminism

After reading both articles about their perspective on feminism I must say that Jessica Valenti article was more fun to read. The reason for this is because it was less informal, it was more relatable. Even though both are these articles are very similar, they both mentioned in their definition that feminism has nothing to do with being anti-men. valenti definition of feminism was the dictionary definition which is, the beliefs in the social, political, and economic quality of the sexes, an the movement organized around the belief. While Hooks definition was that feminism is a movement to end sexism, sexist exploitation, and oppression. Feminism is important to Valenti because it gave her purpose in life, in her text she mentions how she was a suicidal tennager. That she had no meaning to her life, that was until she figured it out, it is to fight for women’s rights, to gain equality. While for Bell Hooks she mentioned that living in a peaceful world is important to her, but she also said that feminism cannot make our world peaceful. That we must also need to end racism, class elitism, and imperialism.

The difference between these two authors was that Valenti was more focused on feminism itself, trying to convince people that all these stereotypes about feminists are not true. She was focusing more on the fact that people are scared to call themselves a feminist because the do not want to be called fat, ugly, and hairy. While Hooks did speak about these stereotypes, she mostly focused on the patriarch system, and how we are oppressed. She was trying to show people the real meaning of being feminist, but as well mentioned male dominance, and how feminism is not the only thing that’s going to fix our world. As well in both these essays they talk about sisterhood, Valenti does not believe women are automatically bonded because of their ovaries. She mentioned how she met homophobic, and racist women, she does not believe that women are automatically bonded together just because they are oppressed. While Hooks mentions that the reason why sisterhood is not valid for her all the time is because how women are competitive with one another. Instead of all being happy, and excited for one another, we seem to compare, and hate on eachother. She also mentions that women should stick together, because at one point of their life they have been dominated by a male figure.

Personally while i was reading this article i did receive more knowledge about this topic, and how serious girls are about not defining themselves as a feminist. My definition of feminism is equal rights for everyone. This means not just for gender, but for those individuals who don’t like to define themselves with a gender, they deserve equal rights as well. Another thing is in Valenti article there was a part at the beginning that states the worst thing a man can be called is a girl. I never really saw it as a negative thing until i read this article. Reason for this is because i never really went deep into thought about it until her article. It is true, and very sad that still in today’s society males will avoid doing things, or wearing things just so they do not get compared to a female. They rather be called other vulgar words, but as long as they don’t get called a girl it’s alright. Which in my opinion is very messed up, because if girls get called a boy we do not feel as if it’s the worst insult to get. This got me thinking that men must really pity us for being females, since they can’t even stand being called a girl, or someone telling them they’re acting like a girl.

Blog 9: Masculinity as Homophobia

The final reading by Kimmel exposes how limited men truly are within the definition of masculinity and how toxic the idea of manhood truly is. He perfectly brought forward the point that homophobia isn’t necessarily the “fear” of gay people more but more so the fear of being viewed as being gay. 

This phenomenon is extremely dangerous as men in attempt to show that they aren’t homosexual tend to exaggerate certain rules of masculinity and some of them being sexual predation towards women. In order to maintain this manly front, they have to show their interest for women often in disrespectful and disruptive ways. 

I appreciated the fact that he explained the feminist critique that yes although men as a group are the ones in power, it’s irrational to claim that individually men are still powerful as men don’t necessarily see any truth in this claim in their daily lives. This claim only goes as far as making these men angry as they don’t feel any kind of power yet they’re being accused. I believe that the comparison with chauffeurs truly depicts the reality of most men. Kimmel also doesn’t deny the existence of oppressive male socialization, but he reminds that although yes they are victims in a sense, they still are highly privileged as white, straight, middle-class men compared to their counterparts. 

The Donald Trump documentary is the best case study for the claims made by Kimmel. One alarming example is how easily embarrassed Trump was by the comments of Obama. In order to reinstate his masculinity and reputation, he went great lengths to show that he is a man. Trump is the perfect depiction of toxic masculinity, he embodies the little kid that will spend his time bullying anyone he deems not masculine enough in order to maintain this feeling of domination. Young boys are thought to constantly look for any behaviours from their peers that might rise any questions about their masculinity and to also make sure they aren’t themselves doing anything that might be deemed emasculating. Trump was also thriving in the military academy where many kids faced various struggles, but for Trump, it was the epitome of what being a man is. It just goes to show how flawed his vision of manhood is. 

GROUP PROJECT REFLECTION

The issue my team and I decided to focus on was faculty abuse. More precisely, we wanted to focus on the abuse of power professionals in schools have on students which can lead to sexual harassment. In many circumstances, teachers for instance, think that because they are in a position of power, it is okay for them to behave inappropriately. 

Some examples of sexual harassment are really important to mention because they come in all kind of forms.

Here’s some examples

– asking for sex in exchange for a benefit or a favour

– repeatedly asking for dates, and not taking “no” for an answer

-demanding hugs

– making unnecessary physical contact, including unwanted touching

– sing rude or insulting language or making comments toward girls and women (or boys and men, depending on the circumstances)

– calling people sex-specific derogatory names

– making sex-related comments about a person’s physical characteristics or actions

– saying or doing something because you think a person does not conform to sex-role stereotypes

– posting or sharing pornography, sexual pictures or cartoons, sexually explicit graffiti, or other sexual images (including online)

-making sexual jokes

Once we had figured out what our subject was going to be, we then focused on the goal  which would be to present what kinds of behaviours are acceptable and which ones aren’t  then try to make these behaviour disappear in academic environments. My team and I had many ideas we wanted use as a way of intervention to this issue. First, we wanted to create a poster that would make others students on campus aware of the issue as well. On that poster, we presented a conversation between a teacher and a student. On that poster, the teacher would ask the student: “We can discuss your assignment over drinks?”. This conversation clearly shows how the teacher is behaving inappropriately. Also, we wanted to create a website similar to rate my teacher but change it to ‘rate my creeper’. It would give the opportunity to the victim of faculty abuse to not only rate their creeper, leave comments about how they were treated and also by seeing comments from other students, it will make them realize that they are not the only victims which may push them to come forward.

At last, I do think our project would be successful and would push students to come forward. There is a multiple number of reasons why I think our project would be a success. One of the main reason why is because of the fact that we are also students, we personally can relate to them and can also be in the same situation has them. Another  major reason would be that because of the website, students are allowed to give comments anonymously which would push them to talk about them being victims of the issue.

SOURCES :

Sexual harassment in education (brochure). (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.ohrc.on.ca/en/sexual-harassment-education-brochure

Know Your Rights. (2018, January 21). Retrieved from http://stopsexualassaultinschools.org/know-your-rights/

A.C

Masculinity

 In the Donald trump documentary, we saw a lot of toxic masculinity.  In Michael Kimmel’s text he talks about homophobia and the “fear” of men being gay.  Men can be scared of being called gay or feminine. 

Being called feminine is seen as a bad thing to a lot of men. It shouldn’t be seen as a bad thing because there is nothing wrong with being feminine. It is as if being a woman is a bad thing. To many men, being in power and about being the strongest. Men see power as something they need and if they do not have that power they can feel like less of a man. They want power over women and other men. Being a man means you need to have power and that is completely false In my opinion. I believe that men feel the need to not be feminine can be very unhealthy. This can severely effect men because they get taught not to show emotions and not to have feelings. You can see how easily a man can get humiliated very easily how Donald Trump got humiliated by Obama. He felt very emasculated and needed to prove his manliness and needed to fire back. If a man is seen as feminine, it kind of negatively affects them. Feminine apparently automatically equals gay. Which it does not. Being gay is also not a bad thing so people should not see being feminine as such a bad thing. 

In my opinion, showing your emotions is so important. Men cannot be afraid to show their emotions and to be feminine. To be a man, it does not require you to the strongest person ever and it does not require you to put other people down to make yourself feel better 

Blog 10: Masculinity as Homophobia

The text Masculinity as homophobia explains why men feel as if they have to act a certain way. In Western society males are shaped to act a certain way that is known as “manly”. This means that they are not supposed to show emotions. The reason why males are scared of being called gay, is not because of the actual definition itself, but it is portrayed as calling them “sissys”. Males feel as if the word gay, questions their manhood, that they have been working so hard to preserve. Males in this society will go to such far lengths to ensure that they are not perceive as gays, that they will not even wear certain color clothing, or talk about emotions.

For instance one of the examples that Kimmel gave in his text was that a male student did not wear his pair of shorts to school because they had a bit of pink and lavender on them. He also remembered that day in class they would be discussing homosexuality. He was afraid that he would be called “gay”, just because his shorts have colors that are apparently “girly”. This is one example out of many on how males struggle everyday with to ensure that they are not a seen as “gay”, or “uncool”. This can also be the reason why males are seen as frustrated, and angry most of the time. The reason for this is because males are the one’s considered with all the power in our society, they are seen as the dominant ones. The issue that males have with this is that not all of them see them as powerful individuals. Majority of males were brought up to believe that they are entitled to power, but they personally feel as if they are not. This can cause them to lash out, because they cannot talk about their emotions, or what’s bothering them, or else they might be perceived as a “sissy”. So instead of talking about their feelings, they just get angry and frustrated, that can lead into physical violence.

Another thing that Kimmel mentioned was that the reason why men do not want to see women as equal is because they are shaped to protect their manhood. If women were equal to them they feel as if it is threatening their masculinity. He mentioned that this can cause sexual harassment in workplaces, or just in general. That men feel so threatened that they have to prove to women, and their selves that they are the one’s that call the shots. That even though they go to the same school,or have the same position at work, that does not mean they are equal to them. That they are still the one with all the power. For instance, when Trump got caught cheating on his wife, and it was all over the tabloids. He acted as if he did not even care, the reason for this was because even though if it was negative story of him, he still owned his power. He did not let his ex-wife win, he did not even apologized for his actions, because that would be seen as a sign of weak, and being weak in Trump mind, did not correlate to power. This is the reason why males are shaped the way they are, is because Western society pressures them into following certain guidelines to prove their “masculinity”.

Karina Veloce

Blog 9: Masculinity as Homophobia

The text “Masculinity as Homophobia” elaborate the problem that Western society has about gender roles, specifically for men. Just like women who sometimes have to act a certain way to be seen as feminine, men also have to be careful on how they act so they can be seen as masculine. Some examples in the text really surprised me and it showed how easy it is for some people to judge just by how someone looks or acts. We talk a lot about how women suffer from stereotypes, but we don’t always realize how men are easily judge or put in a category.

Men need to be strong, dominant, violent and hide emotions to be categorized or seen as “real men” in today’s American society. By creating these kinds of standards, it puts pressure on men to act a certain way with other men and women. Men will feel like they have to put each other down to be seen as superior, because society tells us that the more power a man has the more man he is and the better he is. This creates a constant competition between men that ends up leading to destroying each other’s self-respect and diminished their self-value.

According to what Kimmel explain: “Homophobia is the fear that other men will unmask us, emasculate us, reveal to us and the world that we do not measure up, that we are not real men.” Men are afraid to show who they really are, because they are scared of being judge. This is how we are failing as a society. People are stopping from being themselves just to be able to fit in society. We need to do better.

Blog post 9 Masculinity as Homophobia

In Kimmel’s essay, she identifies how masculinity is brought up by men. Which means that men have to behave a certain way to be identified as males.

At a young age boys are influenced by many people that “men” need to be strong, dominant and aggressive. If they don’t act strong or agressive they will be scared to be called “queer” or “gay”. This is imprinted on them at a young age and they tend to always keep this idea of masculinity. Due to this, men become more and more sexist because they’ve been shown that a men must be more dominant and superior. This shouldn’t be the case because everyone is equal and society has created an image of how a men is supposed to act.

Furthermore men will put each other down to feel superior. They will call each other names and make other people feel bad about themselves so they could feel good. This is a horrible cycle that never ends between men. Kimmel stated that men will also put down transgender people because it goes against “masculinity”. This is very sad to see how our society is becoming. Men are being insecure and afraid of what others might think therefore they will make bad comments on transgender people and also women to feel superior.

Lastly our society needs to dramatically change the way we view masculinity because men are wearing a “mask” to feel more powerful and hide they’re insecurities, it’s a cycle that will never end. Furthermore if we take Trump as an example he said many things that offended and went against women but no one said anything. On the other hand if it was a women who would say the negative comments Trump said, she would’ve gotten into big trouble and she would be disliked by the society. This is really sad, because it’s not right that a men can say things that a women can’t. It shouldn’t be like that

Blog Post 9 Masculinity as Homophobia

Societal Pressures Men Face

In the documentary of Donald Trump by PBS we view what we would consider ’toxic masculinity’. In the text “Masculinity as Homophobia”, Michael Kimmel describes homophobia as the fear that other men will not only unmask them, but emasculate them and reveal to the world they do not measure up to be ‘’real’’ men. In this text the definition of homophobia is different than what we would consider it to be today. Today homophobia is defined” as a dislike or prejudice against homosexual people”. I disagree with Michael Kimmel using the word homophobia in this context because I believe it is misleading and may be misinterpreted. This text was written dozens of years ago, therefore I understand that the language used, and perspectives may differ from recent thoughts on the subject.

In this day and age whether you’re a male or female or another identity, ‘’every mannerism, every movement contains a coded gender language’’. What this would imply is that every action you perform can be linked to feminine or masculine attitudes. We tend to impose gender roles on individuals and categorize them based on behaviours. Men’s lives are structured around relationships of power , how much power they have can determine their value. By reinforcing stereotypes we are promoting toxic masculinity,conformity and repressing authenticity.

If you were/are a man and had/have stereotypically effeminate behaviours you were believed to be homosexual. Most men (with fragile egos) don’t want to be labeled homosexual as this invalidates their masculinity. I believe this is how Michael Kimmel thought of masculinity as homophobia, because it is homophobic towards gay men to the extent that their sexual orientation would make them less of a man.

‘’Fear makes us ashamed, because the recognition of fear in ourselves is proof to ourselves that we are not as manly as we pretend, that we are.’’ -Kimmel

Manhood may be discriminated on the basis of race, social class, ethnicity, age, or sexual preference. This is why many men may feel powerless, because we’ve constructed the rules of manhood in a way that allows only a small percentage of men to ‘’feel like Trump does’’, that they are “the most daring and agressive’’. This small percentage of men are usually middle class or higher, straight and white.

Manhood can be positive but most of it is derived from toxic masculinity. ‘’Masculinity has become a relentless test by which we prove to other men, to women, and ultimately to ourselves, that we have successfully mastered the part.’’ I believe it’s important that we begin embracing feminine and masculine energies. There’s a certain social pressure to be one way or the other, masculine or feminine, but most people possess traits from both and demonstrate more psychological androgynous behaviour.We have to accept that manhood is ambiguous and is subjective

What I learned that I did not know beforehand was the theory that Donald Trump wanted to run for president out of spite towards Obama. When Obama is teasing Donald Trump at the ceremony, this hurts his very fragile ego. Growing up privileged, he was used to always getting his way, in that instance it was one of the few moments where he ever felt humiliated and powerless. Trump looks at people as being losers or winners and in that moment he did not feel like a winner. That infuriated him, however he kept it classy and acted as if it didn’t bother him. The fact that his rage compelled him to run for office, in efforts to be‘’the better man’’ shows how insecure Trump is in his manhood.

-Stéphanie Mallick-Pilon