Advanced search

OK, I'm a novice in this topic, but this doesn't seem right

(25 Posts)
Gasp0deTheW0nderD0g Fri 10-Mar-17 16:30:49

On Twitter today I came across a long thread of people discussing whether there is any validity to the idea of male lactation and male pregnancy. I haven't looked into this (there's a link to an academic article confused) because I was so struck by the response of a female academic. Image attached.

Is it me, or is it very offensive to say that Sigourney Weaver is more masculine than Marilyn Monroe because (presumably) she dresses in unisex clothing, has an engineering qualification and job and takes the lead role in Alien?

Lumbricina Fri 10-Mar-17 16:52:14

I don't disagree with what she's saying - gender is a societal construct and society views MM as more feminine that SW.

HmmOkay Fri 10-Mar-17 17:10:28

I don't really understand that. What do people men by feminine? Where is it written that feminine = short skirt and big boobs? By that definition Caitlyn Jenner is more feminine than most women in the world.

Can we turn it around and ask people to give examples of famous men that they consider to be masculine?

And then some examples of famous men that they consider to be less masculine?

I have a feeling that people will shy away from categorising men in such a way, particularly in referring to men as "not very masculine". And how do these men struggle when they are forced into 'masculine roles'? And what exactly are 'masculine roles'?

I am a bit at sea with it all.

HmmOkay Fri 10-Mar-17 17:11:52

Freudian slip there.

What do people mean by feminine?

Gasp0deTheW0nderD0g Fri 10-Mar-17 17:12:51

I'm completely at sea here. Glad it's not just me!

HmmOkay Fri 10-Mar-17 17:21:50

It is basically saying that slimmer women who are officers aboard a spaceship are automatically going to struggle during pregnancy more than curvier women who are singers.

Ermmm. What?

Gasp0deTheW0nderD0g Fri 10-Mar-17 17:26:08

Yes, that's what I thought it might be saying. Odd.

QuentinSummers Fri 10-Mar-17 19:19:15

The whole thing is offensive. More masculine women, ie who have short hair like Ripley, struggle more with pregnancy because pregnancy is a feminine thing.
Utter bullshit.
Try "most women, regardless of gender presentation, don't struggle with being pregnant because it's a female experience they chose to experience. Women of all gender presentations who find pregnancy psychologically distressing are likely not to become pregnant an to opt for termination should this happen"
What utter bullshit.

IamalsoSpartacus Fri 10-Mar-17 19:31:33

Not surprising that Ellen Ripley is nervous about pregnancy!

<misses point>

Gasp0deTheW0nderD0g Fri 10-Mar-17 19:55:53


Iam, oddly enough when I saved the name I called it bullshit.jpg...

Gasp0deTheW0nderD0g Fri 10-Mar-17 19:56:06

Or even image. Sigh.

sooperdooper Fri 10-Mar-17 20:01:06

I don't have an issue with spectrums of gender stereotypes - Mm at one end and Sigorney Weaver in Alien at the other but I really struggle to see what the fuck it has to do with pregnancy for anyone hmm

DeliciousIrony Fri 10-Mar-17 20:04:22

Point 3 is where I struggle the most, really.

Datun Fri 10-Mar-17 20:04:31

Surely the underlying implication is that transmen struggle with pregnancy if words like breast and mother are used.

Which is fine, for the one transman who is pregnant in this country.

But not for all the millions of other women, so it's a non issue in my book.

Datun Fri 10-Mar-17 20:06:38

And if by 'feminine roles' they mean pushing an 8 pound human out of your vagina then, too bad. That is exactly what it is.

DJBaggySmalls Fri 10-Mar-17 20:06:44

Its an opinion. there's no truth in it. I look androgynous and have very small boobs, but breastfed and turned out to be very maternal.

VestalVirgin Fri 10-Mar-17 20:08:19

Feminine and masculine are social constructs. So it is quite correct to say that Marilyn Monroe is more feminine.

Social constructs have nothing to do with biology, though.

The only reason why slimmer women would struggle more during pregnancy would be because they don't have enough energy stored in their bodies. Though I don't think this would be the case for a prominent actor who certainly has enough money to adequately feed herself during pregnancy.

IamalsoSpartacus Fri 10-Mar-17 20:13:40

is it trying to say that if you are a woman with a demanding, stereotypically male career (spacecraft engineer?) - then you might find pregnancy and motherhood challenging?

Shallishanti Fri 10-Mar-17 20:14:46

No, I think what she is saying is that if you are a more 'masculine' woman (ie you have attributes/preferences which our society deems masculine) then when you are pregnant, therefore visibly and obviously female you might struggle with the feminisation of your body (more curvy) or you might struggle with other people's perception of you as more feminine. For example, when you are visibly pregnant, other people may treat you as more delicate/emotional.
It's not offensive to say that SW (in role) is more masculine than MM (in role). It's not the same as saying that she is 'less of a woman'. It's just saying that she alligns more closely with one stereotype than another.

sooperdooper Fri 10-Mar-17 20:20:36

Interested to know who's said this on Twitter & where I can find it?

BevGoldbergsSister Fri 10-Mar-17 20:24:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Gasp0deTheW0nderD0g Fri 10-Mar-17 20:37:29

It's on this thread: and the woman who tweeted the text I copied is @preshitorian.

pigsknickers Fri 10-Mar-17 21:16:05

I'm not especially "feminine" and I loved being pregnant; I loved the way my body changed. What I struggled with was being patronised and treated like I was thick because I was pregnant - nowt to do with my innate lack of femininity and everything to do with bullshit gender stereotypes.

HmmOkay Fri 10-Mar-17 22:03:15

Bev, yes, that is what I was struggling with.

And how come people don't even think about ranking men in terms of how masculine they think they are?

Who is more masculine - George Clooney or Cary Grant? Vladimir Putin or Donald Trump? Which of those men would struggle more with fatherhood based solely on their build?

Said nobody ever. hmm

Shallishanti Fri 10-Mar-17 22:54:44

'sex does not easily map onto gender' it says in the original post- this is the whole point, and is demonstrated by asking about short haired housewives-
sex cannot change, a woman is always a woman, but her gender presentation may change- she may have long hair or short, may be a bricklayer or a nursery nurse. Some of those ideas about gender may be outdated eg women should not have paid work outside the home, others are still current, eg women should be preoccupied with their appearance.
FWIW I think if you asked men they would say men are judged according to gender roles as well.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: