Badass Blog

The New American Man Doesn't Look Like His Father

Posted by Tolga Ergin on

The New American Man Doesn't Look Like His Father

This summer, All Things Considered is exploring what it means to be a man in America today. In some ways, the picture for men has changed dramatically over the past 50 years. More women than men are going to college, and the economy is moving away from jobs that traditionally favored men, like manufacturing and mining. Attitudes have also changed on the social front, with young men having more egalitarian attitudes toward women and expectations of being involved fathers.   Pedro Noguera, a professor at New York University and head of the Metropolitan Center for Research on Equity and the Transformation of...

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Arnold Schwarzenegger's 5 Rules For Success

Posted by Tolga Ergin on

Arnold Schwarzenegger's 5 Rules For Success

1) Trust Yourself Whatever your dream or calling is, you need to trust yourself and pursue it.  You can't listen to the naysayers or follow the path of your parents or family members, but rather discover what your mission is and go after it.  Arnold's family wanted him to be a police officer like his father, or play a “normal” sport like soccer instead of pursuing bodybuilding, but he knew deep down inside that isn't what he wanted.  He had to go against what others wanted for him so that he could forge his own path of success. “What is...

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The Men Who Still Love “Fight Club”

Posted by Tolga Ergin on

The Men Who Still Love “Fight Club”

Twenty years ago this fall, David Fincher’s “Fight Club” went into wide release, drawing moviegoers into a tale of disaffected American men who chase authenticity by pummelling the shit out of one another in poorly lit basements. In the course of the film, these men expand into low-grade pranks and vandalism, and eventually form a terrorist cell called Project Mayhem that plants bombs in skyscrapers. The film, based on a relatively unknown 1996 novel by Chuck Palahniuk, took the top spot at the box office its opening weekend, but then quickly fizzled. On DVD, however, it found a second life, selling...

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Guys, We Have A Problem: How American Masculinity Creates Lonely Men

Posted by Tolga Ergin on

Guys, We Have A Problem: How American Masculinity Creates Lonely Men

When Paul Kugelman was a kid, he had no shortage of friends. But as he grew older and entered middle age, his social world narrowed. "It was a very lonely time. I did go to work and I did have interactions at work, and I cherished those," he says. "But you know, at the end of the day it was just me."   New York University psychology professor Niobe Way has spent decades interviewing adolescent boys. She points to the cultural messages boys get early on. "These are human beings with unbelievable emotional and social capacity. And we as a   culture...

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ABOUT MASCULENITY

Posted by Tolga Ergin on

ABOUT MASCULENITY

THE CONFLICT BINDRUNE Several readers have asked about the meaning of the Conflict Bindrune that appears on the back cover of Becoming a Barbarian. In the opening chapter of Becoming a Barbarian, I made the point (as I have in several other essays and speeches) that masculinity is action-oriented. Masculinity reaches its most perfect form in life-or-death conflict — in a battle between the individual man and the natural world, which includes other men. This does not mean that there are no other aspects of masculinity, or that masculinity is absent in the absence of conflict. It simply means that...

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