“Re-Stereotyping” Boys, Part 3: The Divine Stereotype

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Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness…”  So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.  (Genesis 1:26-27) (Jesus) is the image of the invisible God…(Colossians 1:15) (Jesus) is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact imprint of God’s very being…(Hebrews 1:3) Stereotype is the new four-letter word in our culture when it comes to gender.  Understandably, we don’t want to impose anything on … [Read more...]

“Re-Stereotyping” Boys, Part 2: Character

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As I mentioned in my last two posts, in our well-intentioned desire to rescue our boys (and girls) from boy stereotypes, we have unintentionally robbed boys of any vision for what it means to be a boy.  And with no vision for boyhood, boys have no sense of what it means to be a man.Just because something is a stereotype doesn’t mean it’s not true or that it can’t be helpful.  In fact, one of the ways we can reclaim the “boy” in “boyhood” is to re-embrace some powerful, life-shaping stereotype … [Read more...]

The Troubling “De-Stereotyping” of Boys

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Prince Jake was kind and caring. Princess Rose was brave and strong. --from A Fairy Tale, by Lego Books What makes a boy a boy?Seems no one really knows anymore.  We’ve spent so much time as of late trying to free boys of “boy stereotypes” that we no longer really know what “boy” means.  In fact, many in our culture have spent so much energy criticizing “stereotypical” boy behavior that boys who may fit that stereotype are made to feel bad about themselves.For example, some boy experts … [Read more...]

The Tyranny of Sameness–Robbing Boys of their Boy-ness

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For all of the great advances women, in particular, have experienced thanks to the Women’s Movement, one of the consequences, intended or unintended, is the confusion between “equal” and “sameness,” or the misunderstanding of differentness. Understandably, because girls and women were so far behind in the 60’s and 70’s, it was important to stress that girls and women were not only equal to boys and men, but that they could also do anything boys and men can do. Equal, however, came to mean “the sa … [Read more...]

The High Cost of Bored Boys

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The central problem of every society is to define appropriate roles for its men. --Anthropologist Margaret Mead Over the last several months we have witnessed far too many stories about “bad” boys—boys setting off a bomb at the Boston marathon; a boy taking up a weapon to shoot his fellow students; to name a few.  But what makes this latest “bad” boys crime so shocking—the shooting of an Australian man—is the seemingly cavalier attitude of the shooters.  They were bored.These boys certainl … [Read more...]


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