Maybe I'm a little too obsessive.

On the internet and girls vs. boys.

First of all, Amy G, I really like how you're asking us these questions! They give me something real to write about! Because let's face it: how tired were all of you of my mopey Spring Awakening posts? And though I love me some picture posts, I just don't do enough exciting things to blog with pictures every day.

But moving on. You asked if the internet advantages girls. I find it particularly interesting that you ask this, as the whole boys vs. girls thing seems to be coming up a lot lately, everywhere I go: here on the RED site, in psychology class, and especially at Lexington GSA meetings. Every week there, it seems we talk at least a little about why it's "okay" for girls to do this and not that, why male stereotypes are more set-in-stone than those of females, etc. We always boil it down to that women have always been thought of as inferior, very emotional, while males are the superior sex, the hunters and fighters. And though over the years, the female stereotypes have been broken time and time again, the male stereotypes are still very ingrained into society. It's okay for a woman to want to move up on the scales, to want to be a leader and a fighter, but for a man to want to lower himself to a woman's status, to be emotional and a follower? That's disgraceful, as if they're resenting society and the superiority practically handed to them on a golden platter.

Connecting it to the internet, which is based on words and writing, it makes sense that it would advantage girls because, well, writing is really a very personal thing. It's really for expressing everything you're feeling at one moment, be it through memoirs or fictional characters. An incredibly emotional form, when you think about it. And the internet takes the personal expression scale and pushes it to its limit. Myspace, Facebook, LiveJournal: all of these sites are about letting people find you, see you, read you, and you want to let them know that you are strong and fierce and wonderful, but then at the same time you feel the need to post those bulletins and notes and entries that come about when you're feeling down, hinting at their inner turmoil over loves and family and friendships. Maybe it's about proving that you're a human being, capable of feeling and loving and reaching out to those who also can and want to feel and love.

And to be honest, I see most of these bulletins and notes and entries are posted by girls. Because they're expressing themselves, letting their emotions run wild for the entire internet community to see. A guy posts and he 's probably seen as weak, picked on by his friends for letting a girl or a parent or another guy get to them. So girls develop more of a handle on the written word and learn how to use it to their full advantage. They write and learn how to use writing and the internet to show a million different sides of one person. Whereas guys, it's like they can't have different sides. They can't show that they have sides that can hurt and feel. They have to be strong, can't show weakness.

Now, don't get me wrong, boys can be just as fantastic as writing as girls, obviously. I mean, go look at the shelves at a bookstore, haha. The two writers I consider the most influential when it comes to my own style were both men. A lot of the guys I know are excellent, excellent writers. And like Jocelyn said, too, I'm super-disorganized, which is supposed to be typical of guys. Stereotypes exist, but are breakable — in reality, there is not "perfect girl" and "perfect guy." We're all meshed and mixed up. In my psychology class a few months back, we read an article about girls and boys, differences and similarities, that everybody has qualities that are stereotypically female or male. There's truly no one way of looking at the boys vs. girls argument. The article discussed differences in playing, schooling, etc. Differences exist, sure, there are general trends, but there are always exceptions, always people who will break the mold of what is normal and average. And now, even though you asked, Amy, even though it's a discussion that's been around for a long time and one I could totally address right now, even though I could get into the whole schooling issue myself, I... kind of don't feel like it right anymore. Huh. Haha. I was going to, ready to, had even typed up a huge paragraph on it, but upon rereading it, I realized that it was so jumbled and messy and everywhere and I'm not even entirely sure what I want to say about the topic. So I'll lamely stop this post short right about now. Maybe another time I'll think more about if school is more geared for girls or guys (personally, I don't think so, not overall). But right now I'll stop and sit back and relax in this here coffee shop that Saskia and I are sitting in this afternoon. I'll go fetch myself a drink and read a little bit. Yeah. That sounds supernice.

(Oh! Actually, one last thing: yesterday, I finally got to see Juno. Oh man. Love. Everyone should go see it. :) Aha. Michael Cera is kind of my favorite ever.)



jordynt said:

Juno is awesome!!! Yeah, I saw it last week. Yay!

Oh, and this post just made me very eager for my psychology class.

January 5, 2008 2:02 PM