Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Discussion on what it means to be straight acting, whether it's good, bad or indifferent.

Moderators: selective_soldier, furface

Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby Learning » Fri Aug 20, 2010 1:34 pm

Genre editor Neal Boulton and Angelo Pezzote, author of Straight Acting, go head to head over whether men are taught to act masculine and over what comes naturally to gay men. Boulton claims that gay men are naturally masculine, but sometimes pretend to be feminine. Pezzote claims that gay men have been "wounded" and forced into the habit of pretending to be masculine rather than acting how gay people "really are."

Boulton: "I don't think there's anything feminine about being a gay man....And I don't think there's any reason to perpetuate a feminine aura just because you're gay...I support less of a reliance on the feminine stereotypes that used to be needed for men to signal to each other that they were gay...Many, many, many gay men are extremely masculine without acting it. They're just born that way."

Pezzote: "These things... [masculine behaviors] become ingrained...We're conforming. We're behaving as we're expected to rather than how we really are...They're forged and molded by our culture into that kind of thing [masculine behavior] because they don't want to stand out."

http://www.logotv.com/video/news/217304 ... id=1583588

According to the interviewer Jason Gallini, Boulton and Pezzote conclude that people should "stop acting." The interview ends with no resolution on whether not "acting" would mean being a natural self or a habitual self, and there is no clarification about what makes up a real self.
Learning
Member
 
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:37 pm

Re: Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby furface » Fri Aug 20, 2010 3:55 pm

Yet another example of the odd human need to label and pigeon-hole just everything. And since they are both, in fact, right; a meaningless exercise and waste of time for all concerned.
"Do not ascribe malice to that which can be reasonably explained by ignorance ... or incompetence."
Isaac Asimov
User avatar
furface
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1175
Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2004 7:35 pm
Location: The Colony, TX

Re: Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby olywaguy » Fri Aug 20, 2010 4:53 pm

I think there are some guys that do effeminize themselves in order to fit into the gay world. I really don't like anyone that pretends to be other than themselves whether its a guy that is effeminate pretending to be masculine or masculine pretending to be effeminate.

A lot of people misunderstand the purpose of this website and think it is a place for guys with internalized homophobia. This website is about people who can be themselves. That we are just like anyone else and that being gay is a part of who we are but not all we are.

I am thankful to SA.com because it made that transition to the gay world for me a good one and the beginning to a new life for me.
Carlos

"I just want to suck his tongue out of his mouth !"--JPaul


http://www.askcarlos.com/
http://carlos-the-critic.blogspot.com/
User avatar
olywaguy
Moderator
 
Posts: 1672
Joined: Sat Oct 09, 2004 1:08 pm
Location: Tupelo, Mississippi

Re: Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby butch » Fri Aug 20, 2010 5:10 pm

Learning wrote:Genre editor Neal Boulton and Angelo Pezzote, author of Straight Acting, go head to head over whether men are taught to act masculine and over what comes naturally to gay men. Boulton claims that gay men are naturally masculine, but sometimes pretend to be feminine. Pezzote claims that gay men have been "wounded" and forced into the habit of pretending to be masculine rather than acting how gay people "really are."

Boulton: "I don't think there's anything feminine about being a gay man....And I don't think there's any reason to perpetuate a feminine aura just because you're gay...I support less of a reliance on the feminine stereotypes that used to be needed for men to signal to each other that they were gay...Many, many, many gay men are extremely masculine without acting it. They're just born that way."

Pezzote: "These things... [masculine behaviors] become ingrained...We're conforming. We're behaving as we're expected to rather than how we really are...They're forged and molded by our culture into that kind of thing [masculine behavior] because they don't want to stand out."

http://www.logotv.com/video/news/217304 ... id=1583588

According to the interviewer Jason Gallini, Boulton and Pezzote conclude that people should "stop acting." The interview ends with no resolution on whether not "acting" would mean being a natural self or a habitual self, and there is no clarification about what makes up a real self.


I say both people are idiots. What an incredible waste of time and a very lame excuse to intellectualize complete nonsense without a shred of analysis of a broadly based survey or study. Garbage in garbage out. Who do these nincompoops think they are?

:shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:
"You know it's going to be bad, but you just can't prepare yourself" ... Homer Simpson
Website: http://ButchBoard.com
Image
I'm ready... are you?
User avatar
butch
Veteran Member
 
Posts: 569
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:15 pm
Location: Vancouver, Canada

Re: Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby westboard » Mon Aug 23, 2010 5:14 pm

Well you can't blame a guy for speaking his mind. I don't think it's a waste of time because there are individuals out there that fit these perspectives. I believe the two authors wrote these because they fit into their perspective but are criticized for degrading the gay image and are accused of counter-affecting the gay rights movement, which i think is understandable given the fact that there's still this unjustified "hierarchy" amongst gay, straight, masc, fem, etc that was created and enforced by the media and other sociological institutes.

I, and i believe many others on this site, fit in Boulton's perspective, that some of us are just born and predisposed to being masculine. And yeah there are those that were born and predisposed to carrying themselves in a feminine manner, and thats fine. But to accuse us of "acting masculine" because we are suppose to naturally act feminine based on our sexual orientation...i think that's ridiculous. I personally think it's harder for naturally masculine gay men to fit into this society than the feminine or stereotypical gay man, and it's not by choice. Just like how we didn't choose to be gay, it's not like we chose to live a harder life susceptible to criticism and closed doors. Likewise i don't believe we chose to naturally be masculine, SOME of us were just born that way. And i feel it's unfair that some people try to attack us for that, like how it's unfair for ppl to attack us for being gay. It's like discrimination within discrimination. Am i being irrational?
Drowning in the sea of love,
Where everyone would love to drown...
User avatar
westboard
 
Posts: 18
Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2010 3:42 am
Location: San Jose, CA

Hard to "fit into society"

Postby Learning » Tue Aug 24, 2010 5:54 pm

westboard wrote: I personally think it's harder for naturally masculine gay men to fit into this society than the feminine or stereotypical gay man, and it's not by choice...Likewise i don't believe we chose to naturally be masculine, SOME of us were just born that way. And i feel it's unfair that some people try to attack us for that, like how it's unfair for ppl to attack us for being gay. It's like discrimination within discrimination. Am i being irrational?


You've made many good points, Westboard. There are reasons to think that biological factors encourage some people to act more masculine and some people to act more feminine.

Gay men get pressured to act masculine because they're male, and gay men get pressured to act effeminate because they're gay. What sort of problems have you seen masculine gay men having with fitting in?
Learning
Member
 
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:37 pm

Conflicting Expectations

Postby Learning » Wed Aug 25, 2010 11:43 am

Writer Greta Christina points out in her 'Five Stupid Unfair and Sexist Things Expected of Men" that men in general face conflicting expectations.

http://gretachristina.typepad.com/greta ... f-men.html
Learning
Member
 
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:37 pm

Re: Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby dannyjameson » Fri Sep 17, 2010 4:59 am

This is my response to the article on "Straight Acting" ! I would like to assume the "straight acting' title is for kicks, because gay men (who are naturally masculine),
can be manly without having to act ! There ain't no acting when it comes to masculinity. You either got it, or you don't. If you have to learn how to "act" in contrast to what your personality really is, then you are being fake and in my book that's even worse than these fake make-up wearing little Timmy's. At least they are being honest with who they are, and it takes more balls to be that honest in public. You say that you don't appreciate certain gays rubbing their lifestyle in people's faces with their effeminate innuendos or actions, but the macho gym queens are doing the same thing. Showing up at wrestling matches taking crotch shots. Yeah guys, we know who you are, and you're not as good at hiding your desires as you think you are. REAL straight guys are into the game, not the game of homo-erotic body language stink-bait, and the retro over-hyped phrases of "Yo man", "Dude that was hot" ! LMAO ! It's become obvious who's trying too hard and who is naturally masculine. When str8 guys occasionally call each other dude, they aren't using it to seduce. They don't have to think about how they act, or if what they are going to say will sound manly. Effeminate and insecure men who have finally grown up and decided to "do it right" by becoming the masculine object of their desire from their youth now as older men. Here's the hilarious part, Nobody cares of the possibility that you might be gay or Bi. The insecurity is in your head. Your Facebook or My Space says no Queens or sissy's allowed, but in fact you are showing people that you are afraid those diva's are going to call something out in yourself that you are trying to hide. Nobody wants drama, that's a given. But there's drama on all sides of the masculine/feminine debate.
1. If you think you are masculine & closeted or if you are obviously out of the closet & masculine...Great, Be Masculine !
2. If you think you are feminine & closeted or if you are obviously out of the closet & feminine...Great, Be Feminine !
3. Don't think for one minute that you have the right to bind other people to your stereotypes. If you do, you're just a walking sexual identity crisis, and a personality disorder.
dannyjameson
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Sep 17, 2010 4:30 am

Freedom to Be

Postby Learning » Sun Sep 19, 2010 7:24 am

dannyjameson wrote: But there's drama on all sides of the masculine/feminine debate.
1. If you think you are masculine & closeted or if you are obviously out of the closet & masculine...Great, Be Masculine !
2. If you think you are feminine & closeted or if you are obviously out of the closet & feminine...Great, Be Feminine !
3. Don't think for one minute that you have the right to bind other people to your stereotypes...


I appreciate your strong support for personal freedom, Danny.

dannyjameson wrote: There ain't no acting when it comes to masculinity. You either got it, or you don't. If you have to learn how to "act" in contrast to what your personality really is, then you are being fake...They don't have to think about how they act, or if what they are going to say will sound manly.


Could you explain more about how you decide "what your personality really is"? In deciding "if you think your are masculine" or "if you think you are feminine," what would that be based on?
Last edited by Learning on Mon Sep 20, 2010 5:56 am, edited 1 time in total.
Learning
Member
 
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:37 pm

Re: Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby nimby » Sun Sep 19, 2010 1:47 pm

I think the term, "masculinity" has lost all meaning from what it once meant. Once we let women define us and our masculinity ( you never heard men sitting around discussing our masculinity, did you?) we lost all controll of the definition, and I 'm afraid it'll never come back to us. So now I'm syre there are as many definitions of masculinity as there are men.
"Why do we have asteroids in the hemisphere and hemmorroids in the a$$ ? "
User avatar
nimby
Veteran Member
 
Posts: 2906
Joined: Thu May 08, 2008 3:35 pm
Location: Toronto, ON

Hard to Define "Straight Acting"

Postby Learning » Mon Sep 20, 2010 6:23 am

nimby wrote:I think the term, "masculinity" has lost all meaning from what it once meant. Once we let women define us and our masculinity ( you never heard men sitting around discussing our masculinity, did you?) we lost all controll of the definition, and I 'm afraid it'll never come back to us. So now I'm syre there are as many definitions of masculinity as there are men.


Wow, that's radical, Nimby. If there were no actions that most people would consider masculine rather than effeminate, then "straight acting" wouldn't have much meaning either. Those people who advertise that they are "straight acting and looking for the same" would be saying things meaningful only to those writing the ads. And any controversy over being masculine or effeminate would be nonsense.
Learning
Member
 
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:37 pm

Re: Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby nimby » Mon Sep 20, 2010 2:40 pm

I totally agree. The term, "straight acting" has very little meaning to me and many other guys here. "Straight acting" and masculinity are not necessarily mutually inclusive anymore. Any masculine characteristic historically applied to men now can apply to women too, and vice versa. The line between men and women is vanishing, and very quickly. My fear is that one day in the near future we will be reduced to a one gender race with slightly differing body parts.

Learning, how do YOU define masculinity and straight acting?
"Why do we have asteroids in the hemisphere and hemmorroids in the a$$ ? "
User avatar
nimby
Veteran Member
 
Posts: 2906
Joined: Thu May 08, 2008 3:35 pm
Location: Toronto, ON

Associating Masculinity and Dominance

Postby Learning » Mon Sep 20, 2010 7:30 pm

nimby wrote:Learning, how do YOU define masculinity and straight acting?


Nimby, I've been hoping other people would suggest some answers to that tough question, but here are my observations so far.

First, you are right that what people think of as masculine can differ by time, place, group, culture, social class, occupation, and so on. There can be more than one way to be considered masculine. There can be different degrees of masculinity. Still, Furface says that when he goes into a gay bar, people mistake him for straight and warn him that he’s in a gay bar, so there must be some things that people are using to identify what they consider masculine.

The details of what’s considered masculine may vary a lot, but here in the United States, people commonly identify masculinity by looking for signs of dominance. When people mistake someone like Furface for a straight guy, they are probably saying that he seems strong and dominant.

Signs of dominance and submission are biological, cross cultural, and common to other mammals. Signs of dominance include things like relaxation, strong eye contact, taking up space, spreading out arms and legs, steady posture and movement, using resources, and using a full, resonant voice. Signs of submission would be nervousness, shrinking to avoid taking up space, keeping arms in close to the body and legs together, or using a soft or whining tone of voice. Signs of dominance and submission are nonverbal indications that someone does or does not feel in charge. Those feelings can be tough to hide or change because they are tied to our biology, thoughts, behaviors, and social context.

Those who equate dominance only with masculinity and straight males are overlooking some things. That's why they make mistakes about Furface. Dominance can be displayed by males or females, gays or straights. Dominance can be an inspiring sign of strength and leadership or something alienating and violent. Because of the difficulties that come with dominance, we see many people trying to change the rules for what’s considered masculine and for who can exercise dominance in our society.

The things I've said might need more examples for clarity.
Learning
Member
 
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:37 pm

Adding to Definitions

Postby Learning » Sun Sep 26, 2010 5:10 am

Nimby, in my summary of masculinity and "straight acting," I was focused on how people act, and I see that I have not discussed things that make someone seem more male like secondary sex characteristics. Secondary sex characteristics such as muscles, low voice, facial and body hair, and broad shoulders separate boys from men and can help distinguish men from women. Sometimes people exaggerate or emphasize their male secondary sex characteristics to seem more manly. Bears use secondary sex characteristics as a status symbol. Anything that makes someone seem more male or more dominant would probably be taken by most people as a sign of masculinity or "straight acting."

What things would you add or say that's different? How would you separate masculinity from "straight acting"?
Learning
Member
 
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:37 pm

Re: Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby nimby » Sun Sep 26, 2010 8:31 pm

Learning, I wouldn't even know where to start separating the men from the boys. I have absolutely no interest in doing that. Sure, there are physical characteristics that attract me at first, but if the person doesen't have the personality to back it up, I'm not interested. As a bi guy, I'm sure my wish list in a partner would differ greatly from your standard homosexual guy, so I won't even attenpt it.
"Why do we have asteroids in the hemisphere and hemmorroids in the a$$ ? "
User avatar
nimby
Veteran Member
 
Posts: 2906
Joined: Thu May 08, 2008 3:35 pm
Location: Toronto, ON

Difficulties of Defining

Postby Learning » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:29 am

nimby wrote:I think the term, "masculinity" has lost all meaning from what it once meant. Once we let women define us and our masculinity ( you never heard men sitting around discussing our masculinity, did you?) we lost all controll of the definition, and I 'm afraid it'll never come back to us. So now I'm syre there are as many definitions of masculinity as there are men.


nimby wrote:Learning, I wouldn't even know where to start separating the men from the boys. I have absolutely no interest in doing that. Sure, there are physical characteristics that attract me at first, but if the person doesen't have the personality to back it up, I'm not interested. As a bi guy, I'm sure my wish list in a partner would differ greatly from your standard homosexual guy, so I won't even attenpt it.


nimby wrote:I totally agree. The term, "straight acting" has very little meaning to me and many other guys here. "Straight acting" and masculinity are not necessarily mutually inclusive anymore. Any masculine characteristic historically applied to men now can apply to women too, and vice versa. The line between men and women is vanishing, and very quickly. My fear is that one day in the near future we will be reduced to a one gender race with slightly differing body parts.



Nimby, your comments emphasize the difficulties of defining terms like "masculinity" and "straight acting." You might notice that I dodged the question too and answered a more narrow one about what people in the U.S. seem to look for. I doubt we could find much that all men have in common that no women have, but that hasn't stopped people from making the generalizations I described.

You also used the words "fear," "lost all control," and "afraid" when talking about the difficulties of defining these terms. What makes not having a definition difficult?

Are there things you appreciate about men that are different from the things that you appreciate about women? What do you think the "standard homosexual guy" appreciates?
Learning
Member
 
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:37 pm

Re: Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby Ben » Sat Aug 27, 2011 12:40 am

Pezzote was pretty fem himself, and he criticizes the word straight-acting, and compares it to acting (iow pretending).... what a shock.
Carlos is right. Gay men conform just as much to the stereotypes - and this Pezzote fella encourages it. He's a fake.
Don't try to be a great man, just be a man...
User avatar
Ben
Member
 
Posts: 174
Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2004 11:23 am
Location: Indiana

Re: Controversy over "Straight Acting"

Postby Learning » Thu Nov 03, 2011 8:12 pm

Ben wrote:Pezzote was pretty fem himself, and he criticizes the word straight-acting, and compares it to acting (iow pretending).... what a shock.
Carlos is right. Gay men conform just as much to the stereotypes - and this Pezzote fella encourages it. He's a fake.


Pezzote's comments aren't consistent because he wrongly assumes that gay guys are naturally feminine and that anyone who doesn't seem feminine is hiding a feminine side. But gay doesn't have to go with feminine any more than gay goes with being left-handed. Not everyone's experience is the same. The only thing that consistently fits with gay is being male and liking guys.
Learning
Member
 
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:37 pm


Return to Straight Acting Men

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron