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The Vietnam War was fought from 1959-1975, and at the time man was pressured into being “manly” and going to war.Men, who rejected the war, were looked on as “hippies” who didn’t quite feel the shoes of manhood.Theroux contradicts himself by saying that society looks at man as stupid and soldierly.
Throughout the essay Theroux reinforces his hate for manliness and the way we turn boys into men.
One thing that strikes me as absurd is his remarks towards sports and towards the people who play them.
He compares sports to being “a drug worse than marijuana and is a recipe for creating bad marriages, social misfits, moral degenerates, sadists, latent rapists and just plain louts.” He also says how few athletes are gentlemen and when reading this I could not disagree more.
In fact I think that sports build character, toughness, work ethics, confidence, team work, determination and so many more characteristics that make up a successful gentleman.
He was born in 1941 which means he reached the age of eighteen in 1959. Not may women worked so the income of the family was placed on the man’s shoulders.
Whereas now the women are more present in the workforce and some of the work load has been lifted off man.Paul Theroux Analysis: “The Male Myth” Is a Myth Paul Theroux describes manhood: “The whole idea of manhood in America is pitiful, a little like having to wear an ill-fitting coat for ones entire life” (292).Webster’s dictionary defines pitiful as pitiable, piteous, pathetic, sorry, and disgraceful.In contrast to what Theroux writes, to “Be a man” doesn’t mean to be stupid.To be soldierly is to have characteristics of a person who works zealously for a specified cause.Being a man in that time period was more pressured than an average male today.Theroux writes about how societies expression “Be a man” insults him.While reading this essay I can’t help but wonder how many other men can possibly agree with Theroux, if any.Men want to be known as manly, they don’t want to be seen as weak or pathetic that has just been engraved in men forever.Theroux believes that society looks at men in this manner. Society looks at men as being dominant leaders and the strong hold of the world.As the years have passed by, women have been fighting for better jobs and offices, but yet men still hold the most powerful offices and the better paid jobs.