Posts tagged masculinity
How John and Stasi Eldredge Ruined My Life

Purity culture does not exist without gender roles - they are an endless recursive set of stairs building upon each other. Purity means following your role as a woman and following your role as a woman makes you pure. Purity means following your role as a man and following your role as a man makes you pure. Rejecting gender roles in romantic relationships means rejecting at least a major part of purity culture. Becoming a woman who asks men out on dates makes you aggressive, which is immodest and impure. Becoming a man who allows his romantic partner to lead every so often makes you weak and therefore more susceptible to temptation - and therefore impure. It's an endless recursion in the logic.

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Masculinity and the Demonization of Womanhood

At the root of this fear of emasculation and fear of men displaying womanly traits is a fear of the feminine. We police both genders harshly, but young boys, pushed to be leaders and providers and strong emotionless robots, get a raw deal. This kind of toxic masculinity depends on the demonization of anything female – which extends to things like close friendship with women, close friendships with male friends (because no homo!), and any exploration of feminine traits when a connection to those traits may help to make for a more well-rounded person altogether. Men are to be solitary strengths, because admitting needs is feminine and weak. And the burden this places on both men and women creates an untenable vision of masculinity and a hatred for femininity. We create misogyny – it is not born of nothing.

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You Are Not An Animal: Masculinity and Self-Control

This is the legacy we leave Christian teenagers with, and when they become adults, it becomes hard to shake this idea that animal lust is “just a part of who men are.” But we must change this dynamic if we hope to stem the tide of sexual violence that is the result of “out of control” men.

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Whiteness as the Masculine Ideal: the History of Racism in Purity Culture

In many ways, the white evangelical church in America is still unconsciously parroting this anti-liberation sentiment, basing their paternalism toward black churches in assumptions about lack of purity and sexual proclivities. The white theology of purity has become the message of the Gospel, flowing from white suburbia into the inner city. The evangelical purity culture seeks to set aright “black promiscuity,” a myth invented to justify white lust and white fear.

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Toxic Masculinity: The Bro-Jesus

These images of Jesus, rampant throughout bro-Christianity, become the full image of Jesus. Instead of the man we see in the Gospels, telling us that love sacrifices all for the good of all, Jesus stands before us with a whip in his hand and anger on his face. Such focus - to the exclusion of all other readings - creates a violent atmosphere for both Christianity and masculinity. Masculinity becomes defined by its violence, instead of its grace.

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