Sunday, August 06, 2006

What I am Reading: "Self Made Man" by Norah Vincent

Nearly finished with the book "Self Made Man" by Norah Vincent. It's been a riveting account of the author's adventures in cross dressing as a man, and "passing" in traditionally male environments. I must admit I had some preconceived notions of what she would encounter and I was very surprised by the reality in some cases. Her perceptiveness and ability to communicate her experiences have definitely led me to the conclusion it is just tough to be a human being in this world period, as the gender roles in society are so defined and stifling to both sexes to some degree.
She did find as a "man" she was taken more seriously in work situations, no surprise there. But what was really interesting to me was her take on "dating" as a man and men's views on sex in general. If you ever were curious in just what a seedy strip club is like to experience as a man, this is definitely the account to read. And when she describes meeting and dating women it is almost a shameful take on how women preconceive "manhood" and project their own issues on men almost immediately in a dating situation. A very interesting view of women's behavior from the perspective of the "other." I would recommend it.

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