Friday, September 21, 2012

A True Gentleman

Timothy Egan in today's NYTimes pays fine tribute to a noted editor, Ash Green, calling him a true gentleman. We are told he never complained....This strikes me as a limited idea of what a gentleman is and an utterly wrong-headed notion of masculinity: the stoic man who neither brags about himself nor whines is a man in trouble....I am glad that Egan knew Mr. Green and was able to honor him at the time of his passing but wonder how healthy it is for men to have old stereotypes of manhood reinforced, especially about keeping feelings to yourself. Psychologically dangerous, I would think....But I applaud Egan for using the occasion to ask the question, Where do we go today to find a gentleman? What sort of mentoring do young men have in the popular culture (see my above comment) or in churches or community? There is no clear answer to such major questions. (I find the new format of these blogspots confusing; it does not allow for paragraph breaks, at least as far as I have yet been able to determine, so I will go back and at least add ellipses to indicate pauses in my last post. It was not intended to be an unbroken blob of print.)

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