Being A Man pitch: thinking about the men in the media

Have I missed something or is the Southbank Centre being quiet on planning November’s Being a Man festival? They had a think-in in January to collect some ideas from the people who could make it to London. There’s another today and tomorrow. They’ve mentioned the think-ins on Twitter and Facebook but I haven’t seen them blog about it. There’s been no open call for ideas.

This festival was so great last time, but with room for improvement, so I’ve been blogging my ideas anyway. I wrote some thoughts about it after the Women of the World festival and have blogged a few things I’ve learnt since the last BAM. I’m lucky enough to live close to the Southbank Centre and not work Saturdays, so I’m going along to the think-in tomorrow. In the meantime, here’s an idea for a session we could do. Continue reading

Advertisements

More and more men are sexy, and why that’s OK

It’s hard to feel sorry for Kit Harington. He’s beautiful, he’s good at his job, and he gets to wear a jacket made from crow feathers to work. Here he is as Jon Snow in Game of Thrones:

Kit-Harington-as-Jon-Snow

I called Harington beautiful, but he might not like that. He recently said that being labelled a hunk is demeaning. Poor lad. But I don’t think that’s what’s going on. I don’t think that a few people saying he’s a hunk strips him of his dignity and respect. He’s not objectified like a woman on Page 3 is objectified. (Kit got me thinking about objectification and my own body and my experience with desire—see this post.)

When it comes to men, what we have is not objectification. Not in a systematic way anyway. What we have is this: some men play characters on TV and bring joy to some people who find those men attractive. The men we’re talking about, like Harington or Aidan Turner who plays Poldark, are in fact rarely naked or sexualised in the way they’re presented. I can only think of once in four whole years that Harington has been playing Jon Snow when he actually got his top off, and that was in a murky pool in a cave. (You didn’t get to see much, even if you paused your DVD.) Continue reading