Friday, June 22, 2007

Misogyny and Manliness

Being masculine is not something that is held up as a virtue today.

The reality is that being masculine has become a parody of itself. A parody of Iron John or ESPN or male bonding and as far away from the kind of thing that truly is masculine.

In feminist circles there has been a rediscovery of the Goddess. The Goddess is an essential human thing that has been ignored or crushed by our society in the west for a long time. It comes out of course in the person of say Mary the Virgin or Shakespeare but in the end it is the Feminist scholars who have resurrected this reality for us.

But among men and in discussing the spirituality of Masculinity we get mostly garbage. A few attempts have been made. Robert Bly and his Iron John tried but became parody. On the right there is allot of talk about Masculinity but it usually ends up in Misogyny or ourright woman hatred. So where we we go to reclaim our Mithras as the Women are reclaiming their Cybele or Isis?

In my life I have had great Male role models who were masculine but never misogynists and who have been guides for me. I think that we as men need to look to models like the ones I have seen.

I am working on a new book of poems that are about and around Leni Reifenstahl and her work. Nazism is the best manifestation of Misogyny and Homo Erotic Manlove that has ever existed. Reifenstahl is the best example of this aesthetic. What becomes evident in her work is that the men are masculine but never caring, they are models but never warm. Reifenstahl's men are to real males as drag queens are to real women, they are in fact false parodies.

This is kind of like the masculinists I see today in our world. Some Harvard professor wrote a book Manliness- it made me sick. When I think I masculiness I think about the soldiers of World War I and in particular my Great Grandfather Emanuele Guerra. He was an Alpino and Italian mountain soldier and after he was captured by the Austrians he was put in a cement cell where one of his hands froze off. I also think about someone like Vladimir Horowitz a craftsman who was fine in all he did. Husbandry, Craft, Stoicism, Solidity these are male virtues that are in fact the opposite of the parody. In the end the parody is oppression. The doltish stupid beer swilling woman hater at hooters is wrong and we Males have allowed it to florish because we are weak and because we refuse to be uncomfortable.

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