Friday, January 30, 2009

I'll make a man out of you...

So I was interested about the idea of how men are subjected to the same media scrutiny as women are, but in a different slimmer way. While women are often stereotyped men are put into an even narrower columns and while women can be the same things as men it is harder for a man to be all teh things a woman can. In line from my blog from last week I was thinking about male disney characters and how they are portrayed. Mostly I was thinking of Gaston.
He is the epitome of manliness. He literally has a ban of women followers singing about how dreamy and handsome he is. Not only that but he is the envy of everyone in the bar and he has muscle that break belts. He even has the confidence to fight to large scary beast! Also he is shallow and doesn't even care about what is inside Belles mind and he wants the only girl he can't have. It paints a very negative picture of what a manly man truly is. He even goes so low to commit Belles father just so that he can have a chance with her.

I know there isn't a huge male fan base for Beauty and the Beast, but this is just an example of how a man can be stereotype in just the same way as a woman. Rather then Belle being the one that falls prey to being an average girl who needs to be saved Gaston or any other prince.

In my life the boys around me weren't really subject to needing ot be a manly man. My dad is a scientist so I grew up with him as the quiet reserved type. My brother philip an dI spend our childhood fighting over who could use the pink and purple pieces when playing board games and my brother, who got many girls, was never afraid to wear pink. I don't think that early exposure really changes who a man becomes.


  1. Gaston is a funny guy. Big body, no brains. I think this is a good illustration of the stereotypes that are shown of men in the media. Another one in that movie would be Beast himself. Beast is an unfeeling,angry, disgruntled beast of a character who needs a kind and gentle woman to reform him. He doesn't have a caring bone in him until Belle comes along. The fact that she can fall in love with a hairy animal of a character also sort of re-emphasizes what we've talked about in class. It's ok for guys to look however they want and women can still fall in love with them. But, had Belle looked like the old witch who first enchants the Beast instead of the gorgeous burnette she is (to me she is probably the most attractive Disney character) who knows if Beast would have ever changed. He probably would have left her out in the cold like he did the witch. Anyway, having said all that I love Beauty and the Beast and I think it's got a lot of good messages in it, but it's interesting to see the stereotypes even in this movie, Gaston being one of the most exaggerated.

  2. I think the big, muscular body type has been so poorly portrayed in the media. Most of the time, the big guys are portrayed as chauvinistic, dumb and vain. I've had to fight stereotypes like these most of my life because I'm naturally a bigger person. I'm not the meathead that I constantly see guys who look like me are in movies and TV shows.
    I remember hanging out with a group of girls in high school who judged me and my friends before they even got a chance to know us. My friends and I all played football and other sports. Those girls refused to believe us when we said we didn't party or spend all our free time trying to get as many girls in bed as we could. They took one look at us and put us in a group with all the other high school jocks that they knew just because our appearance was similar. I've even tried to slim down a lot just because I don't want to be associated with that stereotype.