To use the expression “toxic masculinity” unironically is to open yourself up to criticism at the hands of people that don’t seem to think it actually exists. Brown University this year actually developed a course for their students focused on unlearning toxic masculinity, and the way the television news and social media treated that nugget of typical leftist propaganda, you’d think the Ivy League was slowly transforming into a literal circus. A clown college.
But there’s so much more to this conversation than what’s offered in some novelty course in Rhode Island. We’ve seen news stories about colleges teaching classes based on Harry Potter and Game of Thrones, too, but those cycled in and out of the national consciousness as quickly as criticism about this class likely will.
The difference is that I never thought about bringing Dumbledore or Jon Snow into my curriculum as a high school English teacher. The unlearning of toxic masculinity, on the other hand, does deserve a place in the classroom. Continue reading