American hedonism closes its eyes to death, and has been
incapable of exorcising the destructive power of the moment
with a wisdom like that of the Epicureans of antiquity.

- Octavio Paz
Death is un-American, and an affront to every citizen's inalienable
right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

- Arnold Toynbee
the_band_huge
the_band_huge
"As long as such self-serving hypocrisy
motivates America's response, Ukraine will
only sink further into needless bloodshed,
and that blood will be on America's head."
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
the_band_huge
In America everybody is of the opinion that he has no social superiors,
since all men are equal, but he does not admit that he has no social inferiors,
for, from the time of Jefferson onward, the doctrine that all men are equal
applies only upwards, not downwards.

― Bertrand Russell
Global Coke
Global Coke
"What those 'racists' are reflexively and rightly reacting
to is the soulless chill as the fire goes out beneath the
melting pot. Those who think America can thrive as a
'cultural mosaic' are worse than fools; they're Canadians."

JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Global Coke
Kim Jong-un and Dennis Rodman
Kim Jong-un and Dennis Rodman
"[Dennis Rodman's trip to North Korea] struck
me as uncannily symbolic of, if I may speak
broadly and loosely, the best and worst
of the 'American character abroad.'"

JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Kim Jong-un and Dennis Rodman
the_band_huge
the_band_huge
"But where, I wonder, is Obama's hard choice, in this his
now sixth year of leadership? Where is his defining decision,
against the grain, made solely because it seemed right?
Drone strikes in Yemen?"

JOIN THE DISCUSSION
the_band_huge
Two centuries ago, a former European colony decided to catch up with Europe.
It succeeded so well that the United States of America became a monster,
in which the taints, the sickness and the inhumanity of Europe
have grown to appalling dimensions.

― Frantz Fanon
nsa-spy-cartoon-4
nsa-spy-cartoon-4
"We feel better living in a world with privacy, with intimate, unmonitored communication when desired. Those values mean something to us, and give our lives dignity and humanity."
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
nsa-spy-cartoon-4
What the United States does best is understand itself.
What it does worst is understand others.

- Carlos Fuentes
Poor Mexico, so far from God
and so close to the United States.

- Porfirio Diaz
the_band_huge
the_band_huge
"Indeed, everything about the American southland was magical
and exotic to the young Canadian musicians, from the sights
and smells to the drawling manner of speech to, especially, the
central role that music played in people’s everyday lives."

JOIN THE DISCUSSION
the_band_huge
America is a mistake, a giant mistake.
- Sigmund Freud
America is an adorable woman chewing tobacco.
- Auguste Bartholdi
chimerica
chimerica
"This is the tone of the China Century, a subtle
mix of Nazi/Soviet bravado and 'oriental'
cunning -- easily misunderstood, and
never
heard before, in a real enemy, by the West."

JOIN THE DISCUSSION
chimerica
Coke and 'America the Beautiful'
Coke and 'America the Beautiful'
"And for the others who argued for English-only
patriotism, I note that there are more than
57 million Americans (about 20% of the nation)
whose first-language is not English...."

JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Coke and 'America the Beautiful'
predator-firing-missile4
predator-firing-missile4
"This is the behavior, and the fate, of paranoid
old-world tyrants like Hitler or Saddam, not liberal new-world democracies like America pretends to be."

JOIN THE DISCUSSION
predator-firing-missile4
America is the only nation in history which
miraculously has gone directly from barbarism to
degeneration without the usual interval of civilization.

- Georges Clemenceau
I found there a country with thirty-two religions and only one sauce.
- Charles–Maurice Talleyrand
A people who are still, as it were, but in the gristle,
and not yet hardened into the bone of manhood.

- Edmund Burke
America is the only country ever founded on the printed word.
- Marshall McLuhan
"The removal of racist sports nicknames (and mascots) seems outrageously belated
-- why, exactly, has this civil rights cause
taken so long to gain momentum?"

JOIN THE DISCUSSION
The atom bomb is a paper tiger which the
United States reactionaries use to scare people.
It looks terrible, but in fact it isn't.

- Mao Tse-tung
They made us many promises, more than I can remember, but
they kept only one; they promised to take our land, and they did.

- Red Cloud
In America sex is an obsession,
in other parts of the world it is a fact.

- Marlene Dietrich
I would rather have a nod from an American,
than a snuff-box from an emperor.

- Lord Byron
One day the United States discovered it was an empire.
But it didn’t know what an empire was.
It thought that an empire was merely the biggest of all corporations.

- Roberto Calasso
"For all the good things he did and tried to do, in a way, for me, Mandela's greatness lay more in what he did not do. And this, I think, is his greatest lesson for America."
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Americans are so enamored of equality, they would rather
be equal in slavery than unequal in freedom.

- Alexis de Tocqueville
newtown
newtown
"No one, I thought, could watch those scenes, of young children slaughtered en masse, and so many parents grieving, without thinking that this, finally, would tip some kind of balance in the country."
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
newtown
If you are prepared to accept the consequences of your dreams
then you must still regard America today with the same naive
enthusiasm as the generations that discovered the New World.

- Jean Baudrillard
I am willing to love all mankind, except an American.
- Samuel Johnson
America, thou half brother of the world;
With something good and bad of every land.

- Philip Bailey
"What can be more powerful than disinformation in the Information Age?"
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
England and America are two countries separated by the same language.
- Sir Walter Besant
Christopher Columbus, as everyone knows, is honored by
posterity because he was the last to discover America.

- James Joyce
Now, from America, empty indifferent things
are pouring across, sham things, dummy life.

- Rainer Maria Rilke
If the United States is to recover fortitude and lucidity,
it must recover itself, and to recover itself it must
recover the "others"- the outcasts of the Western world.
- Octavio Paz
The youth of America is their oldest tradition.
It has been going on now for three hundred years.

- Oscar Wilde
"America really is, for most Americans, all things considered, a good place to be, and all they really want is for everyone to enjoy the same privilege and pleasure."
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
When good Americans die they go to Paris;
when bad Americans die they go to America.

- Oscar Wilde
jobs drug dealer
jobs drug dealer
They're nothing more than traffickers; and as the smart traffickers'll tell you, you don't use the merchandise. They are just inoculating their kids with a tech-drug serum, to immunize them against the very merchandise that put the **** bowling alley in their basement.
jobs drug dealer
America is therefore the land of the future, where, in the ages that
lie before us, the burden of the World's History shall reveal itself.

- Georg Friedrich Hegel
America is a large, friendly dog in a very small room.
Every time it wags its tail, it knocks over a chair.

- Arnold Toynbee
Americans always try to do the right thing after they've tried everything else.
- Winston Churchill
The thing that impresses me most about Americans
is the way parents obey their children.

- Edward, Duke of Windsor
Americans are apt to be unduly interested in discovering
what average opinion believes average opinion to be.

- John Maynard Keynes
Europe was created by history.
America was created by philosophy.

- Margaret Thatcher
America is God's crucible, the great Melting-Pot where all the races of
Europe are melting and reforming!... The real American has not yet arrived.
He is only in the crucible, I tell you - he will be the fusion of all races.

- Israel Zangwill
American dreams are strongest in the hearts of those
who have seen America only in their dreams.

- Pico Iyer
America: It's like Britain, only with buttons.
- Ringo Starr
The essential American soul is hard, isolate, stoic, and a killer.
It has never yet melted.

― D.H. Lawrence
I have two conflicting visions of America.
One is a kind of dream landscape and the other is a kind of black comedy.

― Bono
The American mirror, said the voice, the sad American mirror
of wealth and poverty and constant useless metamorphosis,
the mirror that sails and whose sails are pain.

― Roberto Bolaño

October 17, 2017

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Author Topic: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"


MP
Novice Their American
Posts: 8
CanadianStudentMP
Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: November 7, 2015, 17:08

Two themes struck me in Ernest Hemingway’s “The Snows of Kilimanjaro”: Hemingway’s representation of masculinity, and the main character’s propensity to blame others and circumstance for his failure in becoming a successful writer. I began wondering whether the attitude of blaming others’ for one’s failures is a universal human tendency, or whether it reflected an American attitude. My Google search brought up an article entitled “Personal Responsibility 101: Why Is It So Hard to Own Up to Our Mistakes?” on the blog “The Art of Manliness”. My shock at the existence and popularity of such a blog (which from its foundation in Oklahoma in 2008 has become the internet’s “largest independent men’s interest magazine” - AoM) caused me to abandon my original question, and called my attention to American attitudes towards manliness. In a society where the more gender-fluid, modern, “metro-sexual” male seems to be the fashionable norm, and where gender stereotypes are thought of as out-dated and destructive, the popularity of this blog, and the articles, books, and merchandise associated with it, raise the question: how much have American attitudes towards masculinity really changed in the last 80 years?

http://www.artofmanliness.com/2013/02/18/owning-up-to-mistakes/
http://www.artofmanliness.com/category/a-mans-life/
http://www.artofmanliness.com/category/manly-skills/



MelissaRos-
ati
Novice Their American
Posts: 8
MelissaRosati
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: November 9, 2015, 15:24

To answer the previously stated question, I believe individual attitudes towards masculinity have changed, but just like any other country, city, or town, there are conventional norms that cannot be shaken. The typical perception of a "man" is based on the media's portrayal of strong, heroic characters with rippling muscles and facial hair to rival any before them, but what people tend to forget is that masculinity cannot be solely based on physical appearance. Take for instance your father, he might dress in a suit and tie every morning, places a kiss on your mother's cheek, and heads into the hustle and bustle of downtown to take his seat behind a desk in his office which is known for the greatest view in Toronto, or he could throw on a pair of jeans and a tool belt, still kiss your mother on her cheek, and step into his office on wheels (AKA a white work van) and proceed to the construction site in your local neighbourhood. Either way, in your eyes he is still the greatest man to ever walk to Earth, and it does not matter the tool he chooses to wield to get the job done, whether that be a hammer and some nails or his trustee MacBook and briefcase. What matters, is his intention, the emotional drive and character that wakes him up in the early morning hours ready to tackle the day for you and the rest of your family.

As a lover of poetry, I find myself glued to the YouTube channel Button Poetry. It's compiled of videos by spoken word poets professing their belief in religion, sexuality, rape, and even one who addresses the term "man up". The poem is called "Ten Responses to the Phrase "Man Up" and Guante, the author and speaker, makes several claims that are worth thinking about. One of my favourite out of his ten is number five where he addresses the idea that no one ever tells women to "woman up". Females staked their claim years ago with the right to vote, the right to work, and have equal pay as their male counterparts. Women have decided to not be defined by magazine adds and the media's attempts to portray what a true woman is, and I think it is time for men to do the same. It is also time for the world to except people as they are! There is no right or wrong way to be a man, it is an open ended perception that should leave no man judged or feeling inferior because he could not meet a "standard". So to all the men, stop comparing yourself to others and stop worrying about what other people may think about you because in my opinion a "man" is someone who is not afraid to be themselves and owns the person they are day in and day out.



C. M.-
Farrell
Novice Their American
Posts: 6
C. M. Farrell
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: November 10, 2015, 19:39

I was intrigued by this post since I myself am a regular reader of The Art of Manliness (which, interesting to note, is a collaboration between Brett and his wife Kate McCay).

The original post asked,
"In a society where the more gender-fluid, modern, “metro-sexual” male seems to be the fashionable norm, and where gender stereotypes are thought of as out-dated and destructive, the popularity of this blog, and the articles, books, and merchandise associated with it, raise the question: how much have American attitudes towards masculinity really changed in the last 80 years?"

I would begin by suggesting that American attitudes towards masculinity have been a topic of interest for American literary figured for much longer than 80 years. Furthermore, questions about the meaning, shape, and form which manliness takes have a long precedent in world literature. Yet I agree that it seems to be a topic which is of special interest for American authors. The enduring popularity of early American author James Fenimore Cooper (and his well-beloved Natty Bumpo) and the continued study of Washington Irving's short story Rip Van Winkle are just two examples which we have discussed in my current English course.

But to return to the original question, we hear a great deal in the media about gender stereotypes being "out-dated and destructive," yet I agree with the original poster that the existence of such a large online community suggests many people aren't convinced. I count myself among that number. At their worst, gender stereotypes involve pigeon-holing individuals and compelling them to act according to inflexible, rigid social patterns; at their best they reflect the lived reality of many men and women that there do seem to be differences between the sexes. Are they true 100% of the time? No. But to attempt to deny general differences seems to flout centuries of lived experience.

Helpful here may be a passage from the introduction to the blog authors Brett and Kate McCay's book Manvotionals: Timeless Wisdom and Advice on Living the 7 Manly Virtues:

"Both genders are capable of and should strive for virtuous, human excellence. When a woman lives the virtues, that is womanliness; when a man lives the virtues, that is manliness.

"Women and men strive for the same virtues, but often attain them and express them in different ways. The virtues will be lived and manifested differently in the lives of sisters, mothers, and wives than in brothers, husbands, and fathers. Two different musical instruments, playing the exact same notes, will produce two different sounds. The difference in the sounds is one of those ineffable things that is hard to describe with words, but easy to discern. Neither instrument is better than the other; in the hands of the diligent and dedicated, each instrument plays music that fills the spirit and adds beauty to the world."

I think the musical analogy is an eloquent one for discussing things like masculinity and femininity. In our contemporary culture the discussion of masculinity often raises eyebrows and can raise alarms as an assault on femininity or women's rights. I don't think the two are at odds; they are, as the analogy suggests, complementary.



sergiobald-
ini
Novice Their American
Posts: 6
Serge
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: November 12, 2015, 16:36

At the outset of reading "A Moveable Feast," I was informed by my professor that Hemingway isn't read or studied as much in universities (at least the university I attend, the University of Toronto). I was confused by this because I've always considered Hemingway a great writer and still do. However, after reading this novel, it is easy to see that Hemingway approaches masculinity and gender relations archaically, at least as far as 2015 is concerned. I certainly do understand the era in which he wrote in is much different than the era we are in now. Hemingway's view of masculinity is one I disagree with because, although strength of any kind is admirable, it is not confined to one explanation or definition. A man does not have to behave a certain way to be deemed masculine. Strength mentally and emotionally is commendable and should be accepted in any man. The days of housing your emotions or having emotional reactions being akin to weakness deserve to be left in the past. That being said, it does make it fascinating and entertaining to read because of those very changes in our society concerning gender identity. The somewhat autobiographical nature of the book does allow the reader to really understand how things were in that era. The characters are real people and while some parts of the story may be fictionalized, the realness of the people and the time make you appreciate where you are now and how things have changed for the better. It also makes it very entertaining and you'll have to forgive me for finding some entertainment in a the old projections and musings of Mr. Hemingway.



Anna-
Blazhko
Experienced Their American
Posts: 16
Anna Blazhko
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: November 13, 2015, 23:22

An interesting topic, thank you MP!
Here in the Ukraine, with numerous guns to their head, the male-dominated Rada has now finally passed the LGBT workplace rights bill (the leader just kept forcing votes until he got a majority—very male!) But everybody, including even the President, immediately said ‘Don’t worry, no gay marriages, never in our country, with a 1,000 years of Christian tradition!’ So the guns go away from our head (for now), and maybe we will even be allowed into Europe without visas, but has anything changed? It’s really just 1,000 years of male domination they’re defending, the same attitude that has fueled our civil war, crippling corruption, social brutality, and domestic violence for years and years.
So for me, for all those like me, ‘manliness’ can’t end soon enough. The same musical argument those authors use to justify their stereotyping can apply to everybody, to every individual, no two people are alike, so the ‘virtues’ of one will never be shown in just the same way as another. And even if some broad fuzzy generalities may finally be true, what little good they may do is, in my view, totally outweighed by all the bad they certainly have done and continue to do, at least in the minds and lives of ‘fuzzy’ thinking people. Certainly in my country, and in the violent world I constantly read about and see in America, manly anything seems like a luxury we are still far from able to afford.



Shealyn
Novice Their American
Posts: 8
Shealyn
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: November 16, 2015, 10:28

Women's rights and lack of equality compared to men has been a hot topic of discussion for many, many years. But as the above posts show, the idea of manliness for men is something to consider as well. Because of men's so called "dominant" position in society, one in which they have always been given more opportunities than women in many respects, women's inequality has taken precedence over men's inequality. But men must suffer stereotypes just as often as women do. Hemingway's ideas of these stereotypes are very apparent in his writing. I found it especially apparent in his memoir "A Moveable Feast". When Hemingway meets F. Scott Fitzgerald, he is immediately wary of him largely because of his physical appearance. Hemingway holds very firm ideas of what a real man should look like and how he should act, and Fitzgerald just doesn't seem to embody that. He is immature, has feminine features, and doesn't carry himself the way a real man should. Thus, Hemingway is not interested in him, and even looks down on him. Hemingway has a very male gaze, especially towards other men. If a man does not meet his criteria of "manly", he degrades them. This is a problematic way of judging men, especially in today's age. We live in a time where gender and sexuality have become fluid and gender norms are slowly being broken. Compared to Hemingway's time, there are many more diverse opportunities open to both men and women. But men are sometimes still looked down upon if they are not strong, or assertive, or "manly". Bullying towards boys who are "girly" or "feminine" or homosexual is a problem in many elementary and high schools. We still carry around a firm idea of how a man should act, and when those who believe in these strict stereotypes see a boy or man not conforming to them, they act in a way that Hemingway would. A man should be able to act whatever way he wants, regardless of gender norms. He should not be judged by his "manliness", but by who he is as a person, just like any other human being.



Yuuichi-
Takada
Experienced Their American
Posts: 17
Yuuichi Takada
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: November 16, 2015, 16:42

As a Japanese man, keenly aware of what Japanese men were responsible for last century, I sympathize greatly with your thoughts, Anna and Melissa and Shealyn. And you may well be right, Anna, in seeing any kind of ‘manliness’ as a kind of luxury that we cannot yet afford, in the East or the West.
But as a scientist, I am also keenly aware of how hard and even dangerous it can be to work with equations containing too many variables and too few constants. To continue your fine analogy, variables are rather like precious luxuries that we must work hard to afford, and must be temperate in enjoying. Further, as our capacity to—I want to say metabolize them, if that makes sense—as our capacity to metabolize these variables increases, we can work well with more of them, and the equation remains ‘robust’, we scientists say.
Also, complex equations (like social equations, which, thank God, I don’t have to work with) have a kind of life of their own; they grow and evolve, like lifeforms, ever more complex and subtle, as their variables increase, both in number and complexity. And when our capacity to metabolize this increase keeps up with the increase, the equation remains robust, that is, strong or ‘virtuous’.
Now let us think, for a moment, about two of the more important equations in human history, that once, and for a long time, were very robust: the family, and the community. These equations evolved for thousands of years, before the social ‘revolutions’ of the late 20th century suddenly introduced variables, like L, G, B and T, and drove these variables, with great rapidity and even violence (from the conservative perspective), into them, splintering the few constants upon which the robustness of the equations depended, and creating a kind of kaleidoscopic equation, full of variability, mutability and color, magnificent to behold, but for some quite impossible to work with.
The question one might ask then is, has our moral metabolism evolved fast enough to keep pace with those ‘variable’ revolutions? Or have they driven so much variability into those traditional—and I think most would agree critical—equations, that they are losing, or have (in many contexts, as in deprived circumstances, where strength of character and action are at a premium) simply lost their virtue?
When a man, for example, was expected, simply because he was a man—expected by his fellow men and by God—to provide for his family, fairly or not, whether he liked it or not, the buck, as the Americans say, stopped there. In this is much strength, even if there be none in the man.
Where does the buck stop now?



emfoley13
New Member
Posts: 4
emfoley13
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: November 17, 2015, 17:32

I think it would be overly simplistic to state that the women's right movement is over and that men are now at the forefront of their own gender crisis. As it has been stated, conventions of gender and sexuality are being broken down and slowly eroded over time. There are still a lot of variables that come into play in terms of discussing our gender identities and how they interact. As a woman, there is still an onslaught of shaming and psychology that must be manoeuvred on a daily basis. Take Hillary Clinton; she's running for office in the 2016 presidential elections, she is an incredibly powerful woman and she is still the target of slut shaming and sexism. Donald Trump described her as "shrill" and Bernie Sanders asked her to stop "shouting over gun control," to which Clinton beautifully responded "I'm not shouting but sometimes when women talk some people think its shouting."

If you want an example of "the art of masculinity" take a peek at Donald Trump. He fits many of the conventional gender ideas of masculinity and is wildly respected and revered in the US for his adherence to traditional sexuality and gender ideas. Trump, a man who accused a Fox News correspondent of "having blood coming out of [her] whatever" for asking tough questions during a debate, is still consistently at the top of the polls. What does this say about what Americans value from their leadership? When a tweet was sent to Trump about how Clinton shouldn't expect to please America because she couldn't please her husband, Trump retweeted it. What does this say about how Americans view gender in terms of political strength?



emilydedon-
atis
Novice Their American
Posts: 8
EmilyD
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: November 24, 2015, 10:48

I'm really glad that we're discussing Hemingway and his prominence in modern American themes and values, as he is one of the most influential writers of the twentieth century, but this very idea also raises some concerns for me. We've all touched upon many ideas surrounding masculinity, and more specifically, Hemingway's portrayal of masculinity in his literary works, but I find that he approaches masculinity in a "code of conduct" like way. To be more clear, I find that his writing is directed specifically towards men by way of providing a basis of how men should really act/carry themselves. This is an alarming thought, considering that all modern day writers strive to achieve a "Hemingwayesque" style (theres even a definition of the word "Hemingwayesque" on dictionary.com....thats how serious it is). Some people will argue that a "Heminwayesque" style is one that is minimalistic in terms of language, but at the same time, really packs a punch in terms of thematics. I however, argue that that a "Hemingwayesque" style is one that emphasizes an idea of false-masculinity and escapism. I see this prominently with Harry's character in "The Snows of Kilimanjaro", as he is trying to escape the constraints of femininity and modernity. Hemingway emphasizes the notion that achieving authenticity (and therefore, being a true man) is not at all related to the idea of escapism (leaving the reality behind). I stumbled across an interesting article from Ball State University entitled "Escapism in America: The Search for Utopia in Gated Communities" which highlights America's desire for perfection among small, isolated populations. Our history dates back with the formation or agrarian societies, who worked tirelessly in hopes of achieving extraordinary annual crop in order to feed everyone. We then moved into the formation of religious cults that undoubtedly strived for perfection in exchange for eternal salvation. Fast forward to the 21st century and we have our military comprised of people who devote their lives in order to achieve ultimate safety for our nations. Despite these instances of small communities striving for perfection (and numerous others that I haven't touched upon), serious social, political and economic issues still exist in the Americas and all over the world. Populations of people are living in poverty unable to afford food, there have been serious instances of religious devotes using their religion to cause harm, and the most popular issue lies in refugees forced to survive in war torn areas against their will. This is the imperfection in America (and in many other nations) that nobody seems to address, ultimately reinforcing the idea of escapism in the form of gated communities. The last quote of the abstract in this article is one that resonates with me, and I find that it sums up what I am trying to get across quite perfectly; "If municipalities address the reasons driving people to live behind walls, the will no longer be needed"

https://cardinalscholar.bsu.edu/handle/handle/185500



AdelaideAt-
tard
Novice Their American
Posts: 8
Adelaide Clare Attard
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: December 6, 2015, 16:57

I am also glad that we are discussing Hemingway and the dangers of forced masculine norms in American literature, as well as society. Emily, I partially agree with your statement that Hemingway’s writing is directed specifically towards men by a way of providing a basis of how men should really act or carry themselves. But what if these gender norms that Hemingway expresses in his writing is more serious than just articulating a certain “code of conduct” ?
My concern is, who created these roles, and why is it so important for men to give in to these calls to masculinity? We learn these masculinities from culture; boys and young men learn how to act by emulating other men, which can be dangerous. Boys from a young age are taught what it means to be a ‘real man,’ and in Hemingway’s case, this can be defined as being a hunter, being well endowed, being crass, and being the breadwinner for the family. Because of Hemingway’s over-active “manly” hobbies, his “A Moveable Feast” is an example of masculinity as a social construct by and for men in patriarchal society.

References

Bromley, Victoria L. Feminisms Matter: Debates, Theories, Activism. North York, Ont., Canada: U of Toronto, 2012. Print.



NataliaK
Novice Their American
Posts: 8
NataliaK
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: December 6, 2015, 23:49

I find it interesting that several American writers have brought American “masculinity” to the forefront in several of their works, not just Hemingway. One that comes to mind is Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Black Cat”. The male protagonist seems to share character traits that were seen as quintessentially female; docile and empathetic. He even likens himself in spirit to that of his wife, who has similar traits. He finds comfort in animals and in taking care of them, giving him a disposition of a gentle creature – a disposition he was mocked for as a child. As he grows older his disposition changes to that of a terrible abuser, and eventually, a murderer. It could be said that these female traits of his were not acceptable to him anymore and he could have been drawn into a depressive state wondering why he was so different. He quelled his natural impulses, and by doing so he opened the door to moral “perverseness” in order to fill some feeling of emptiness. By trying to fulfill a manlier image he created a monster. Therefore this conventional image of a “man” by American standards has been misconstrued. There is nothing wrong with a man being docile, empathetic, emotional, passive, gentle, etc. As long as one is adhering to their natural instincts then that is what a “man” should be, and by trying to change into someone constructed by society’s standards is an error that could lead to losing one’s natural identity.



SN_America
Novice Their American
Posts: 8
Ahsan Moghul
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: December 7, 2015, 22:50

I'm really glad people brought up the topic of Hemingway and Masculinity. In a move that would probably make Hemingway's stomach turn, it seems he's posthumously 'sold out out"; I'm sure Fitzgerald would get a kick of that. Indigo has started placing products called the "Hemingway Collection" as you can see here:

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What's interesting about this collection is that Hemingway seems to be marketed as a lost masculinity ready for purchase and reflective of a current crisis of masculinity in search of a spirit animal. It's Ironic that Hemingway is presented this way when he have learned in class that later in his life he was far more ambiguous, than some heteronormative poster boy. That aside, even in "A Moveable Feast" and "The Snows of Kilimanjaro” what in 'manifest content' appears as a strong masculinity reveals a latent and brooding insecurity in Hemingway's psyche. Take for instance Hemingway's description in A Movable Feast;

“His chin was well built and he had good ears and a handsome, almost beautiful, unmarked nose. this should not have added up to a pretty face, but that came from the colouring, the very fair hair and the mouth. the mouth worried you until you knew him and then it worried you more.” [Excerpt From: Ernest Hemingway. “A Moveable Feast.” EPUB.]

For such a confident man, he has the odd need to denigrate others and Fitzgerald's description borders on fixation and a deep insecurity.



superfly
Experienced Their American
Posts: 11
superfly
Re: Hemingway and "The Art of Manliness"
on: December 7, 2015, 23:23

I honestly enjoyed reading "The Snows of Kilimanjaro" by Ernest Hemingway so much. I'm in my early twenties and have my share of pain, loss, fear, doubt, and regret, as does everyone else. As cheesy and as hard as it may be to admit, the story was sort of therapeutic. It really made me reflect about my own life and my decisions and choices. I think everyone has been Harry at one point -- at the pits of despair, muddled with what could have been and was is reality. We all had dreams when we were younger and someone told us it was impossible, or they became harder to achieve, we got lazy, we succumbed to society's notion of pursuing the realistic and letting go of what is extraordinary. Whatever it is, whatever the dreams were, at some point we left them behind. Similarly for me, I feel like I have abandoned my dreams and accepted being average and seeking what is average. But when I was reading "The Snows of Kilimanjaro" I realized I didn't want to be Harry anymore. I will not allow my present or my future to be shaped and formed by limitations, by society. I will not blame others and I will not blame circumstances. I know that there have been hardships in my life and that they will persist in the future, but I choose to be Helen. I choose to be the voice of unwavering and unrelenting spirit, of motivation, of support, of strength.

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