Masculinity and Femininity « Essays & Excerpts « IKHS
Masculinity vs femininity hofstede essays on poverty
What changes took place in the little boy? He had received the full brunt of the worst period of his parents’ married life, and in addition, was the first child. The mother had succeeded in emasculating him, in seducing him for herself, and away from his father. She had also succeeded in making him terrified of his father. In pursuing his exaggerated masculine role, the father had unwittingly supported his wife’s seductive manipulations with the boy. When his mother’s psychoanalysis began, the picture I got of the little boy was that of a weak, scrawny boy who was given to petulant outbursts. Extremely tense and sensitive, shy, and withdrawn, he preferred playing with his younger sister, or girls of his own age, refusing to have anything to do with boys. He constantly clung to his mother, and found all kinds of pretexts for touching her, exploring her body, asking intimate questions about sexual differences and about babies. He cried very easily, dawdled in his play and his eating, and suffered from disturbed sleep. The two years of his mother’s analysis wrought a change in this little boy. His sister could no longer get away with her cute tricks; his mother now encouraged his increasing self-assertiveness. His father no longer made impossible masculine demands on him. In short, he was now getting positive support from both parents and cooperation from his sister.
View this essay on Femininity Masculinity and Physical Activity
What about the distaff side in the course of neurotic deviations from culturally-prescribed patterns? As with the boy, the girl, too, may become extremely feminine, neuter, or assume many so-called masculine characteristics. We will understand all of this much better when we see it evolving in the following family situation: at first glance, this family would appear to be a happy one, like so many others. However, on careful scrutiny, we can see much more that lies beneath the surface. The mother was exaggeratedly feminine in some ways, yet almost masculine in others. Indeed, she gave the impression of being a loving mother and a real woman in civic interests. Her façade was that of a gracious and idealistic person. But behind the façade were secretiveness, evasiveness, and sadism. Considering this a man’s world, where women were invariably downtrodden, she was a vigorous feminist, and considered herself a very spiritual person. She exploited a compliant manner merely to lead one on and sabotage one’s best efforts. Her techniques of dishonesty were so subtle and so skillfully manipulated that most people never became aware of them. Her husband was a self-righteous individual with a streak of meanness underneath. They had a little boy of four, and a girl of two.