Thursday, September 10, 2009

Bashing through the snow?

And the relentless infantilizing of the American male plods on, picking up on the theme already well established in ads and sitcoms...

A reader tipped me to this magazine
, Going Bonkers?, yesterday. I went to the site and had to read everything three or four times, plus do some Googling around, in order to persuade myself that this wasn't a put-on. The magazine brackets itself as "the self-help magazine with a sense of humor."

I quote from the blurb promoting the cover story of the "Winter 2009" issue (shown left):


Tools to Help your Whiny, Self-centered, Immature Mate Become an Adult
It's adorable when a baby pouts his way through stressful situations, but when your partner does the same thing, it's incredibly frustrating. Though narcissistic behavior is common in young children, most of us learn to compromise and consider other people's feelings as we get older... If you're married to someone who still treats himself as the center of the universe, you can end up feeling bitter, angry and frustrated if you don't act to change the situation...

The word misogyny gets tossed around a lot, even on this blog from time to time, but there is a term (besides male-bashing) for the (anti-)male equivalent; it's misandry, and it surely applies here.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

I wonder if there could ever be a magazine that showed every negative stereotype about women, maybe the cover has her emptying the bank account for expensive jewelry and fancy shoes, cosmetics and the rest of it plus nagging her husband half to death and then winking at the pool boy inviting him to screw her. And not even being able to figure out the simplest math like a tip in a restaurant. How much of a chance does that have of ever getting published?
-Carl

RevRon's Rants said...

I frequently bristle at the rampant incongruity in negative stereotyping in virtually all forms of media today. When was the last time you saw a commercial in which the man was the intelligent one, and the woman a buffoon? Or where a white guy was more astute than the black guy? Were the roles reversed in either case, there would be a loud and widespread outcry.

While I acknowledge that we guys frequently display a propensity for buffoonery, it is no greater - and no more frequent - than that which is displayed by women and minorities. And I'd willingly suspend any claim to the right of umbrage if the "other folks" would as well.

Steve Salerno said...

We've talked about this before, Ron, and I share your pain. There is an apparent and unmistakable hierarchy in TV ads that goes something like so: A black guy is more intelligent and savvy than a white guy, and a woman is more intelligent and savvy than any guy. Curiously, however, Asians--who tend to place first in all formal studies of intelligence, at least of the scholastic kind--are still apt to be played for laughs. (I guess their lobbying groups don't have much clout.) And fat people? Fuggetaboutit. In TV-land, fat people are, by definition, morons.

sassy sasha said...

does the turth hurt, steve? :-J

Steve Salerno said...

Yes, Sasha, the turth hurts...

1minionsopinion said...

I'm suddenly reminded of a "Baby Blues" comic I read once. The dad's watching television and minding the kids while "Leave it to Beaver" or something similar is on. The dad on television is stuck parenting for the day and the Baby Blues dad wonders why that idea was considered so hilarious. I think Wanda's cheering in the background, pleased that her husband isn't that backward.

As far as stereotyping women, look at all the books and magazines promoting fashion and make-up like that's all women need to concern themselves with. Or the ones that advertise both weight loss and chocolate cake on the cover. And tips on decorating a room.

I'm a woman and I don't even buy them. I'm kind of flummoxed as to why more women aren't as savvy about where they're putting their money. Buying that junk only encourages them to print more...

Steve Salerno said...

Minion: I remember being in an airport newsstand once--have I posted about this? (I'm the last one who'd know)--and taking note of the way they categorized their magazines. Under "women's interest" they had Glamour, Bride's, Good Housekeeping, Cosmo, etc. Under "men's interest" they had Esquire and Playboy, yes--but also Time, Newsweek, etc. Granted, this was some years ago, but I think the upshot is hard to avoid: Publishers appear to believe that men think and analyze, while women put on mascara, worry about their weight, and scheme about how to hook a man...

RevRon's Rants said...

Steve, if one is to believe the magazines, many of those guys are trying to think & analyze their way into the pants of the women who have lost the weight, but will still bake the chocolate cake (quietly enough as to not distract him from the game du jour.

While I think it's unfortunate that women are so objectified in the media, at least they aren't always presented as dolts. And I won't go any deeper into that, save perhaps to insert the word "Wasilla!"

Neuroskeptic said...

"Are you sick and tired of struggling with food? Life is too short to be hassling with your weight! Weight gain is as simple as increased calories ingested and decreased calories burned. Yeah, right! That statement doesn't take into consideration many real life issues that keep the pounds packing on – issues like how you feel about yourself, unresolved childhood hurts, how your family treats you, a deep rejection, a dead-end job, or a dull, boring routine. The reality for many is that the ups and downs of the scale are about how we react to the ups and downs of life…"

Childhood hurt, it's very high in calories.