Manhood for Amateurs: The Pleasures and Regrets of a Husband, Father, and Son

Chabon, Michael
Harper 2009
ISBN 978-0-06-149018-7
306pp
Date finished: 2010-04-05

I'm fascinated by the question of masculinity and of how males should behave. In North American society men can be pretty constrained -- you're supposed to be the primary wage-earner, eat manly foods like meat and burgers, can't do girly things like taking care of children, dressing nicely, showing emotions, listen to musicals, etc. etc. I find it interesting to think about why this is so and how to change it.

Therefore I picked up this book. The title is somewhat misleading; more of the pieces are about parenting than any other topic, but Chabon is clear-eyed about it, not idolizing children or seeing them as the heart and center of the family. There's also some reminiscences of his childhood, a reflective piece about a kind father-in-law from Chabon's failed marriage that really resonated with me, notes on gross-out kid humour, and the author's lack of tragedy. Chabon's reflections were relevant enough to make me revisit some of my own personal history.

Tagged: essays

Permalink: http://books.amk.ca/2010/04/Manhood_Amateurs.html

%T Manhood for Amateurs
%S The Pleasures and Regrets of a Husband, Father, and Son
%A Chabon, Michael
%@ 2010-04-05
%D 2009
%G ISBN 978-0-06-149018-7
%P 306pp
%I Harper
%K essays

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