Issues Surrounding Masculinity in United States
Our society today has little tolerance for men and masculinity in general. Masculinity can be defined as having qualities or appearance of male. It includes behaviors typically associated with men. In his book, Ferguson takes us into the world of a sole, municipal elementary school attended by students who have been labeled as troublemakers and potential jail inmates. She identifies how a group of young boys of African American origin aged between 11 to 12 years are identified by their school work force as lovers of jail (14).
Over the years black Americans boys have been subjected to a kind of discrimination both in school and outside. There are claims that teachers treat these boys as if they are doomed to fail. Ferguson (26) goes on to criticize the form of punishment given to the boys which according to him does not instill discipline but simply perpetuating troublemakers and creating potential inmates (67).
Issues Surrounding Masculinity in United States Essay Example
According to equality index carried out by Pascoe (114), black men in America have high chances of being unemployed than white men. The black men are seven times more likely more to be imprisoned with a jail sentence of above ten months over their white counterparts. The report also discloses other disparities ranging from unemployment, school drop out rates and annual income. While there have been some improvements on the gap between the black men and white men in United States of America, black masculinity is still being faced with greater problem.
Despite the condemnation given to them, Ferguson argues that Black American boys look seriously at schooling and excelling in life. In addition she identifies how the whole society beliefs in a natural difference of black children from the white children. Most people according to him identify the black men as criminal and it is this view that disproportionately put them in danger of disappointment and punishment. this is a greatly interfere with the black American boys according who in future end up taking the negative behavior as implied by their mentors.
Ferguson bases her argument on a fundamental theory of learning, drawn from two sources: Marxist & Bowles speculation view of society which gives school the task of reproducing the existing communal pecking order, and Foucault’s post-structural theory of disciplinary authority that views punishment as an instrument of social segregation (82). He contrasts this speculative frame to the commonly held liberal idea that schools are meritocratic (112). But the black American boys are hyper aware of their individuality pattern.
According to Fergusson (123), they act upon their masculinity through impressive performances and disruptions in class work and they achieve their self worth for themselves by using hostility behavior strategy to regain their sense of self. To identify themselves as resourceful, authoritative and knowledgeable in the face of the humiliation they encounter in school.
By masculinity, Malin (36) seems to mean men who not only reveal the physical qualities of toughness but also who also possesses some noble principle. In his book, Malin claimed that Clinton has been shown as a conflicted and sensitive, yet strong man (42). It is these characters according to Malin (43) that helped him win presidential elections.
Clinton’s personality remained a package of conflicts that variously embraced and overthrown different stereotypes of masculinity hence he was able to remain a strong man. Malin 2005 (78). Sonenstein associates masculinity with culture, and socialization and encourages men to try to live up to cultural standards of masculinity (342).
According to Malin, men fraternity face pressures and dilemmas around race- and gender-based individuality structure is always a flagrant force that works against these students maintaining an obligation to schooling. This is why schools across the nation for example in US observe a continual attrition of schoolboys as they link the ranks of troublemakers (67).
According to Ferguson (112), molding our boys viewing them as Bad Boys is a powerful challenge to current views on the setback of the black males in school. Currently black males are severely constrained by the society and culture of their high school and of American society in general.
This form of treatment world neither favor girl child who is always more vulnerable to several situations. Due to this unhealthy treatment the black American Male end up performing poorly in their education which lead them to drug abuse and criminal activities which in future lead them to be on the wrong side of the law. Ferguson 2000 (P 139)
Both black and white men have their roles to play as men in America. Ferguson advocates for need to change the social organization and the culture of the society so as to enhance a suitable learning environment of the African American males in particular and all children in general.
Solutions begin from an assurance that slight inputs, short-term interventions and person prescriptions into schools are greatly sufficient to cure an organization that is mainly flawed. The organization should aim for metropolitan black kid who seems to be the formation of a community which will basically obey the rules of civilization. A reform of the whole educational system is what is urgently necessary according to Ferguson (234).
Overhauling the whole school system is the only way according to Ferguson (113) for eliminating all kind of institutionalized discrimination.
She states that significant changes may take position by altering the curriculum and establishing lesser classes whereby student gets enough attention from their trainers. In addition, antiracist education for student teachers and reciprocated respect among adults and youth will also form a very good base to eliminate society and cultural constrain. Schools that are reorganized in this way would help in bringing new meaning to the Black masculinity (235).