Masculine and Feminine characteristics – why the labels?


What inspired me to write this post, is the above picture. Someone on Twitter posted it, saying they had to discuss it as their homework, and it had such an impact on me, I knew I just had to write about it.The picture shows a list of Masculine Ideals and Feminine Ideals. For some reason, someone has felt the need to categorise everything and this is the way they have chosen to sort it, but I don’t agree.

One of the phrases that particularly stood out to me was the fact that athletic was categorised under ‘masculine’ when there are just as many female athletes as male ones and little girls love to play sport just as much as little boys. Can you imagine telling Jessica Ennis,  Serena Williams and Ellie Simmonds that being athletic is a masculine ideal? I’d imagine they’d laugh in your face. Gender doesn’t impact whether or not you’re athletic.

Another things I found striking was that ambitious was a masculine ideal. Do we now suddenly live a world where women don’t have any aims or aspirations? Because last time I checked my female friends have just as many ambitions as my male friends and are willing to work just as hard to achieve them.

Leadership qualities were also sorted under ‘masculine ideals’ when I love to take control when trying to organise things. I am completely happy to admit that I can be bossy, but at the same time lots of people have told me I’m a god leader. And it’s not just me, there are women leading things all over the world and they seem to be doing okay despite the fact they’re not male.

Another shocking thing was that compassionate was categorised as female, when actaully all human beings should try and be compassionate towards others no matter their gender. Compassion should go hand in hand with the qualities I mentioned above. A good leader is compassionate. A athlete, particularly one who is part of a team needs to care about others. If all our leaders in everything were men, but only the women were compassionate, our world would never get anywhere.

Overall, the conclusion I can draw from this is that we don’t have to label everything. Not everything has to fit into a neat little box, where it can be filed away. Characteristics shouldn’t be defined as male or female. Every characteristic should be someone anyone can aim for and a full, complete human being should try and have characteristics from both sides of the table above.


12 thoughts on “Masculine and Feminine characteristics – why the labels?

  1. emily says:

    I definitely agree with this – one time my History class had been moved to one of the English rooms, and on the board was typical words associated with “Masculinity” and “Femininity”. Sure, the previous class in the room might’ve been discussing how these categories are wrong, but I found it really sexist and stereotypical. It angered me a lot.
    And, how is “independent” a masculine word?! I’m quite independent myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Molly-Louise says:

    I don’t get why people need to categorise everything into neat little boxes like this just so they can then police those that don’t fit into their boxes!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Luna Cooler says:

    Categorizing is an instinct that all humans have–even you and I have it, but perhaps not so much as others. Categorizing is good for survival in the wilderness because then you can say all mushrooms are poisonous and all snakes are dangerous–of course not all of them are, but nuances won’t really increase the chances of survival in the wilderness. Humans have evolved to survive in the wilderness. Now, that poses a problem in civilized society because it creates a bunch of stereotypes that can lead to discrimination. When humans encounter something that doesn’t fit in their categorization, they either ignore it or feel that it poses a threat. This is just so you know why they sorted male and female out.


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