Where to with masculinity?

We are looking forward to welcoming Thomas Page McBee to campus next week. He is the author of the award-winning memoir Man Alive and also the first trans man to ever box in Madison Square Garden. McBee’s visit is part of this semester’s Clarke Forum theme, Masculinities. One of my early memories related to masculinity is of when I was probably nine or ten years old and one of my older sisters told me to clear the dinner table and start washing dishes. Because we were going to engage in some consciousness raising! (It was the late sixties.) That was the start of a parallel education, led by my sisters and, increasingly over time, my mother. Some of this education was challenged years later when my then future mother-in-law (a very traditional Spanish woman) strongly reprimanded me for trying to help clear the dinner table. She wasn’t having it. (We worked it out, and she came eventually came to accept and appreciate that detail.) It seems to me those experiences and many similar ones I have lived through were of a low-stakes quality compared to those lived by boys and young men today. And that is a good thing, not only for boys but also for girls and young women. For everyone. But also challenging. I don’t have any sons, but I do have a grandson. For many reasons, but for that one especially, I am very eager to listen to McBee to learn more about masculinity. I hope you will join us next Tuesday, October 15th for his talk.