The Problem with Naturalizing Aggression in Gender

Whenever men act in particularly aggressive ways the excuse is always, ” Boys will be boys.” This trend continues into adulthood with excuses for sexual harassment such as, ” I couldn’t control myself, my behavior is normal, this is what male animals do…” But is it really what nature intended for men? Anthropology already knows that much of what we consider “natural behavior” is socially constructed such as gender and race since such assets are not ingrained biologically. Prof. Agustín  Fuentes explains the lie of so-called natural male behavior in his article, “Busting myths of human nature.” In this article, the professor explains that violence is not ingrained within male DNA but is a possibility of our human potential; a possibility that can be controlled. He comments on this problematic thinking with, “If we believe that this is truly the nature of humanity then we accept a wide range of violence as inevitable, and we will see war, rape and murder as just part of the nature of being human.” This form of thinking effectively dehumanizes men and spits in the face of what we call progress. In order to put an end to rape, sexual assault and aggression we as society need to eliminate the naturalization of male aggression and end the lie of “boys will be boys.”

Advertisements