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Tuesday, 29 June 2004

Music schools

So I went across the country to go to music school. Why? Cuz I had already attended the best music school on the west coast. And also, alas, there are some cultural problems in the grad school. Specifically with the attitudes of male grad students. Undergrads hate grad boys. I hated grad boys. this illustrates why I hated grad boys and part of the reason I didn't want to go to Mills to study composition for my masters. Mills need to radically adjust the cultural attitudes of the music department, or they will continue to have difficulty attracting women to their program. at a women's college. It's disgraceful.

Of course, there's a perception in society at large that lesbians and women in general exist for the benefit of men. Dyke March provides some examples of that dynamic in action. The problem here is a sence of entitlement plus a massively sexist culture. San Francisco and Mills College are supposed to be and ought to be enlightened areas. But they're not. why is it that I couldn't imagine the above-linked Hustler Article coming from a wesleyan music grad boy (and wesleyan could provide the same material...as could probably any undergrad institution aside from Bob Jones), but when I saw it on T's blog, I thought "must be a music student."? I don't think Mills used to be like that. In the glory days, in the 70's, I dunno, I can't imagine.

How Do We Fix This?

um, some mad scientist could come up with a disease that kills anybody whose testosterone levels are over some certain amount. Guys would have to stay calm and inoffensive or die of dred disease. What? Practical ideas? If you've got one, leave a comment. Obviously, we need to push a cultural shift.

6 comments:

Crinis said...

I'm gonna be nitpicky here: Testosterone doesn't cause maleness, or even agressive maleness, any more so than estrogen causes femaleness. The only things we know about testosterone are 1) men have more of it 2) it is somehow part of the human sex drive, and 3) it affects how the brain makes decisions. In the latter case, there is a saturation point, more testosterone doesn't make a person more rash. Ie, there is an upper limit build into the brain for rashness. High testosterone has been linked to dangerous criminals AND upstanding members of our society (the latter, for some stupid reason, was only researched very recently). Getting rid of testosterone, while I understand your facetiousness, won't do a damn thing towards making music students get a life.

Anonymous said...

Testoserone allows me to grow fabulous red facial hair, but doesn't make me think of women as furniture. It's the culture, not the chemicals.

"Guys would have to stay calm and inoffensive or die of dred disease."

Wow. The Stepford Husbands. Honestly, I'd much rather die than be calm and/or inoffensive. Yes, guys should be calm and behave and Muslims shouldn't be able to carry large knives. That's lovely. Also, keep in mind that "inoffensive" is in the eye of the beholder and based on whatever baggage he or she may have.

~yesyouam

ojan said...

crinis (or anyone else), do you have any links/references to said studies about testosterone? it's not that I don't believe you - just want to be more informed.

goat said...

having known at least two vaguely-intersexed women whose testosterone levels were as high as any man's, i agree that it has nothing to do with the testosterone.

of course, i refuse to believe that hormones have all that much to do with gender attitudes. i do think they have to do with physical traits - i mean, obviously - and must affect psychological traits as well, but it's not like there're many ppl running around without testosterone or estrogen. i don't believe that hormones have nearly the effect that people think they do. i think gender is 99% socialization.

so we need to fix the socialization. men suffer from it too; everyone suffers from gender socialization. we also need to stop being so fucking victorian.

Les said...

yes, obviously it's cultural.

ok, so guys don't like it when i make jokes about testosterone seeking diseases...

Jeffner Allen once wrote, "We must take seriously the idea of an organized violent uprising of women against men." Guys don't like that or the SCUM manifesto either. sheesh.

i think the problem with mills is that some men feel very threatened by empowered women and will strike out in responce to that, inappropriately, by trying to put the women back in "their place." Obviously, jokes about castration aren't going to help that phenomenon. The discourse needs to go in another direction. Which, yeah, I'm not doing. Cuz I'm not better than offensive males, I just happen to be on the right side.

Wonderwoman could fix this

*sick*
-clst

Crinis said...

"The Trouble with Testosterone" by Robert M. Sapolsky. Absolutely fascinating essays. I cannot recommend this book too highly. I'd loan you my copy, but it's already on loan. Amazon link: http://tinyurl.com/2vljm

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