on the constraints of gender constructions


First of all, I'd like to apologise profusely for being so absent! I could list a million and one excuses, from 'heartbreak' to school work, but none of those make up for the fact that I have left my dear blog to grow cobwebs. The only thing that can make up for it is some good content, which I really hope this post will be.

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Some of you reading will be very familiar with the face of this post: Bobrisky. I don't even know how to begin describing him, the guy is just such a character; but, as I see it, Bobrsiky is a Nigerian snapchat celebrity, famous for being an open 'cross-dresser' who loves to brag about his infamous 'bae', his hair, his nails and of course his bleach(ed) bod! You really have to see for yourself, so if you are interested i suggest you add him on snapchat, if only just for one day: bobriskyy

Also these are some articles that go into more detail about who Bobrisky is:

https://buzznigeria.com/bobrisky-nigerian-guy/

http://dailymail.com.ng/biographyprofilehistory-of-nigerian-male-barbie-idris-okuneye-aka-bobrisky/

So, recently Bob has been looking finer and finer and finer and wow he might as well be a girl... right? There has been a lot on my tl about how we should start calling him 'she' and how he is basically a woman now etc etc. What makes Bobrisky 'basically a woman' is the simple fact that performs his gender like women do: he is overtly feminine. Which begs the question, is that what it means to be female? Femininity?

Now, I am not saying what we should and shouldn't call him (although as you can tell I'm sticking to him) nor am I saying that people's way of thinking is wrong, I am just letting you in on some thoughts of mine that was provoked by the epic mixture of Bobrisky and my cultural anthropology course.

Society has constructed two distinct and polar behavioral categories based upon one's sex, femininity and masculinity, these are used as instruments to propagate the idea that men and women have differences beyond the biological, but do we really? Should I really be a certain way because I am a woman? Questions, questions..

By learning 'gender' from our parents, what we see in the media, what we are taught in schools etc, women are taught to be feminine and men to be masculine and everyone has to produce the same gender performance as everyone else of that same sex. This gendered construction of society has led to the binary world of men and women in which we live, a world which limits how we experience it by enforcing these codes of conduct: femininity and masculinity. Homophobia and transphobia are born out of these expectations for men to be masculine and women to be feminine. Masculine men like women and do masculine things. But Bobrisky, for example, likes man-bae and does feminine things so surely it can't be well with him, the social order argues. The social order has laid out a map of what people should be and we are encouraged to conform lest we become a scoundrel to some or a spectacle to others.

Our current form of social organisation, which many of us our fighting against, reduces our capacity as human beings by shoving us into compartments based on something beyond our control - our sex at birth. For example, by saying beautification is a feminine thing - it is a behaviour ascribed to and reserved for female people - we limit what male people can do. We question if a man is a man because he has long hair and wears makeup and does his nails, with no logical reason why.

In my opinion, the dichotomy of femininity and masculinity should not exist. When I think about it, I find it super weird that we are taught to behave in a particular way because our hormone levels said this and we have that reproductive organ. I just saw on twitter that people call brunch 'gay and feminine' and I'm thinking "who really comes up with this?"

"What really constitutes femininity and why?"

Through the social construction of gender, our sex dictates soooo much of what we become and we just have to accept that until we (human people) can fully unlearn this weird ass concept of categorising people according to the sex with which they were born. Until then seems like all we can do is resist and rise up for change. Buuuut, for whatever it's worth, I just thought I'd make sure that you were all aware of the fact that we live in a world where our gender dictates how we perform, to the point that if one performs according to another gender their sex is up for debate.

thought for food.

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Hoping to get the smartest person I know to write a more educational less rant-like post on gender being a social construct, so please look forward to that if this post left you looking for answers!!

#perspective #rant