The Mask You Live In Analysis

The second documentary, the Mask You Live In focuses on societal constructs of femininity and masculinity and how these constructs impact men and women in society. It discusses the experiences and issues of mainly men, focusing on the influence society has on men by enforcing certain expectations of what a man should be like. Joe Herman, Michael Kimmel and several others discuss their experiences with societal pressures to behave masculine. Some of the main issues discussed in this documentary are toxic masculinity, violence in young men and boys, the influence of media on masculinity, and the influence male mentors have on boys and men.
The documentary begins by discussing the expectation for young boys and men to repress their emotions and
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Boys feel as though they cannot reach out and ask for help when they are feeling sad or dejected because of their fear of being seen as not masculine. According to the documentary, fewer than 50% of men seek help for mental health disorders. Men are also discouraged from creating deep emotional bonds with their friends. This inability to seek help and form bonds with others results in anger in young men, which then results in violence and aggression. The portrayal of men in the media also leads to violence in young boys and men. TV shows, movies, music and video games encourage violence and aggression in men under the appearance of displaying strength. For example, the media tends to portray men as strong and silent. Men in films typically use violence to achieve their goals. The media teaches boys that this is the type of masculinity they must adhere to. Studies have found that violent video games do have an impact on boys and have shown to increase aggression in …show more content…
Young boys and men may find mentors or advisors from the media, video games, sports and music. They may find it in the classrooms with their teachers or their coaches. They also may find it in gangs. These different forms of mentorships can impact how young boys learn and understand masculinity, either by encouraging negative forms of masculinity or positive forms.
Overall, the documentary illustrates how societies expectations of men to remain unemotional and always in control has a negative impact on men. It discusses the importance of young boys having father figures to teach them about masculinity and the effects this guidance will have later on in life. It also discusses the ways in which the media influences societal ideas of masculinity and how these toxic ideas of masculinity can result in mental health issues like

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