Welcome To The Machine Essay

1705 words - 7 pages

Welcome to the Machine

Since birth children are taught the necessary components of human interaction; the lesson of how to be a male and female is one that is never-ending in their development. Whether or not the parents choose to teach these barbaric messages of what is conventionally expected from a male or female, their children will be bombarded with this agenda by other aspects of western civilization’s culture. The machine, which is known as society, facilitates the media, our peers, and social interaction which will in result shaping its citizens as it sees fit. Steering clear of these messages is impossible, but the ability to recognize these lessons in gender for what they really ...view middle of the document...

Research demonstrates that, like crying, smiling is also an implication of emotion that women showcase far more often than men, and society is to be accredited for such tomfoolery. Since birth, parents present themselves as a model for what is acceptable to their children. The connotation of ideas like, “real men don’t cry”, has paved a way for the creation of the phlegmatic male. Men are not the only victims of culture’s pressure to mask genuine feeling; women have also been programmed to unconsciously endure society’s oppressive shackles on emotion and self expression. Amy Cunningham states that “the average American woman’s smile often has less to do with her actual state of happiness than it does with the social pressure to smile no matter what…”(349). What she is ultimately trying to convey is that smiles have lost credibility when expressing happiness due to the life long encumbrance women face to project an image of hospitable tenderness. The burden adolescents have inherited is not avoidable; the message of what is expected and deemed acceptable by society will inevitably reach the masses through social synergy one way or another.
The consequences of breaking the norms implemented by society when regarding gender specifications can result in an individual being dubbed as queer. Although, society has recently been able to understand and assess the damage caused by foolish presumptions surrounding gender expectations, conventional ways of thinking still persist. Mothers and fathers now accept a wider range of hobbies to be gender-neutral, yet there is still something odd about a young man who finds his passion in fashion design or culinary arts. People find comfort in where the majority sways, and anyone who doesn’t choose that path is out of the loop. Katha Pollitt paints a picture of how typical mothers think when she rhetorically questions “… if their songs wanted to spend the weekend writing up their diaries, or reading, or baking, they’d find it disturbing? Too antisocial? Too lonely? Too gay?”(556). Despite their sons finding interest in reading, baking, or writing it isn’t condoned for whatever reasons they’re convinced of. These activities aren’t necessarily considered masculine by society, so instead of fueling their offspring’s passion they find a reason to discourage it. Intentions may be sound; after all, parents do want what’s best for their children. It is the ridicule and scorn of society that parents, unconsciously, want to protect their children from. Parents aren’t the only guide for their children; there is a system of teachers, police officers, extended family, and celebrities etc. who all have their hands in shaping what kind of person they will be. If an individual fails to meet standards given to them by the system, they will have an overwhelming feeling of contempt because that is what will be projected by their peers. Unfortunately, not accepting someone for their true self is not something we do to be...

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