Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Male as the Default

A lot of people don't know what I mean when I talk about male as the default state, but this article demonstrates it perfectly.

Male As The Neutral Default by Gwen Sharp, PhD.

Just looking at products for sale in stores or online, you can clearly see how male is considered to be a default state of humanity, while female is a special, other state.

Image of a house paint roller with black base next to a smaller paint roller with a purple base and wrapped in a cardboard sleeve with an image of a woman on it.

Image of two kid outfits for sale, one blue with "Awesome Kid" on the shirt and the other pink with "Awesome Girl" on the shirt.

A store aisle sign that says "Women's Deodorant" above and "Deodorant" below.

There are plenty more examples at the link.

Notice how these are for everyday items. Paint rollers. Deodorant. Clothes. But there's an increasing opposing trend of companies taking products that have become associated with women and femininity and making them MANLY and FOR MEN ONLY.

Image of a yogurt cup that says "POWERFUL YOGURT" and a bull-like logo next to the text "THE FIRST YOGURT FOR MEN."

Image of a scented candle that says "MANLY INDULGENCE" with a shirt collar logo and the scent is called "ivy league."

Image of a Dr. Pepper ad that says "All 23 flavors. Just 10 Manly Calories. IT'S NOT FOR WOMEN."

This happens because companies know that men won't touch stuff that they think is "feminine" because apparently masculinity is so fragile that a low-calorie soda or smelly candle can shatter it. So they have to go LOOK THIS THING IS MANLY MEN CAN TOUCH IT SEE MANLY MANLY MANLY POWER BULLS THE COLOR RED SUITS MAAAAAANLYYYYYYY.

It's like men have to keep everything in the universe they might touch separate from femininity. Now do you believe me when I say that the state of being a woman is considered bad? The worst thing imaginable for men is to be associated with anything considered womanly. It's hard not to feel like they really hate us.

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