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Masculinity

Besties: Young Thug and Masculinity

Young Thug’s emergence on the mainstream hip-hop scene was met with some backlash. He is one of the most polarizing artists in the hip-hop industry because his persona, physical appearance, lyrics, and unique fashion sense. Immediately, I (like others) dismissed his music by closing my ears, eyes, and mind. His music and wardrobe reflects his […]

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Masculinity Relationships

Endnotes to “4:44”

“I apologize, often womanize. Took for my child to be born. See through a woman’s eyes.” -Jay-Z On June 30, 2017, Jay-Z (Shawn Carter) released his 13th studio album 4:44, arguably the most personal and socially conscious album of his career. Subscribers to his online streaming service, Tidal, are privy to music videos for the […]

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Masculinity

Fresh Dressed: Fashion and Black Masculinity in Pro Sports

“For me to sit here and tell you I wasn’t the best-dressed, I would be lying to you.” -Jamal Adams, 2017 NFL Draft Where can you find Christian Louboutins, pink blazers, and lots of floral prints? If you said the Kentucky Derby or an Alpha Kappa Alpha soiree you would be wrong. No, this was […]

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Masculinity

The Healing Journey of Manhood

The transition from boyhood to manhood has been a cultural element of many groups for centuries. For males born in the United States, like myself, there aren’t any official cultural practices to support the transition into becoming a man. Honestly, manhood is not well defined. Most of the men I know see being “a man” […]

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Masculinity

Thou Shalt Not Forsake Brotherhood

In the distant past, well, maybe more like five years ago, I underestimated the importance of developing strong relationships with other men. I was one of those guys who felt like I didn’t need anyone. I was the guy who the fellas would accuse of bailing on the crew because I was more interested in […]

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Masculinity

Troy Maxson and Toxic Masculinity

“Patriarchy demands of men that they become and remain emotional cripples…Patriarchy as a system has denied males access to full emotional well-being, which is not the same as feeling rewarded, successful, or powerful, because of one’s capacity to assert control over others. To truly address male pain and male crisis we must as a nation […]

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Masculinity Self-Care

Tears and Black Masculinity

“Crying is cleansing. There’s a reason for tears, happiness or sadness.” —Dionne Warwick Get over it. Suck it up. I don’t want to hear it. Dry em up. What are you crying for? As an African American male I’ve heard all of these. Whether from my own family, friends, television or movies, it always struck […]

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Masculinity Whiteness

Why So Fragile, America?

We’re all witness to a lot of fragility right now. It’s on our TV screens, in our former high school friend’s Facebook posts, on the timeline of that person you followed on Twitter because they said something funny that one time. We have become accustomed to the prevalence of this fragility throughout US culture and […]

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Masculinity Rape Culture

The Rape of a Nation and the Reconstruction of Black Masculinity

With a month left before the 2016 presidential election, a sobering topic has emerged to dominate national discourse: rape and sexual assault. Angry at what they perceived as the lack of box office success for Nate Parker’s film Birth of a Nation, some Black men have blamed Black feminists for dampening enthusiasm and turnout of […]

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Masculinity

The Desire to Drown

I knew from the way she set her schoolbag down that the argument wasn’t over. Usually it sat on the floor next to her desk in our shared office, but tonight she’d left it out in the hallway. A habit that had taken me some time to decipher. The office was where I worked and […]