Essay about Being A Man By Paul Theroux

995 Words Jun 29th, 2016 4 Pages
In the essay “Being a Man” the author, Paul Theroux, describes his negative feelings toward American society 's expectations of manhood. He talks about his own experience as a man and also gives examples of masculinity in media. Theroux argues throughout the essay that the expectations of manliness is harmful and oppressive to men. He tells the reader that from a young age boys are forced into an ideal of manhood and that follows them throughout their lives. He finally claims that men are hesitant to embrace feminism because they believe that their lives are just as bad (cite). As a transgender boy in America I have experienced many of the same struggles that Theroux says that cisgender* men do. “Being a Man” correctly argues that masculinity, as we think of it today, cannot leave any room for femininity. I was socialized as a girl growing up and although my parents tried to raise me without gender roles, I still learned to behave in a certain way because of perceived gender. I was taught that I was to act feminine and if I showed any masculine behavior then I was a tomboy and should act completely like a boy because one cannot exhibit both masculine and feminine traits at the same time. In Theroux’s experience, boys are taught from childhood that women are different and separate from men. He says that he was taught that he was to be a man and that meant that women’s femininity needed to be mysterious and a nuisance to him (cite). He describes this idea of separation on…

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