During the gender in our rooms’ project, I realized that there are stereotypes about both sexes that are true and false. Our society has created stereotypes of both men and woman that make us untrue to ourselves. The majority of people have fallen into these lies about how they must act, dress, eat, etc. However, in some of the rooms I visited the students had things that did not fall into these generalizations. When I visited Daniel’s room it was very masculine. He had all of his trophies on a shelf and it had a dark feeling to it.
Our society has brain washed us into thinking that men must be strong and athletic and it shows in our room. With Daniel having his trophies on a shelf is displaying his manliness which is a good thing according to our society. I also have trophies and metals hanging in my room because I have fallen into the stereotype of men. In Sanford Carter’s Language of Men, he hated being a cook in the army because he wasn’t fighting for his country; he was making the food for the brave soldiers. However, he felt that without his cooking, the soldiers would not be able to fight as well because they would be hungry.
He realizes that without him, the others cannot survive. Society has brought us to believe that Carter should feel ashamed about being a cook because it is supposedly a woman’s job to cook and the men should be brave and courageous. I negotiate this stereotype by realizing sometimes I must show a more soft side to me, like when I kiss and hug my mothers. The awards displayed in Daniel’s and my room demonstrates the stereotype of men being athletic and strong. Junot Diaz stated, in his story How (In a Time of Trouble) I Discovered My Mom and Learned to Live, that men should not show any emotion and his mother was acting manly be holding in her emotions.
The dark lighting of Daniel’s room demonstrates that he keeps his emotions to himself and does not vent his problems. However, in Annie’s and my room we both had a light coloring of our walls, which could relate to a lighter and excited person. However, since my room is baby blue it might be assumed that it is a girl color and that I should not have that as the color of my walls because that shows emotion and I shouldn’t have any. However, this contradicts the gender role because I am a stereotypical man but I can show a different side of me. Raphael, 17 from a city in the west, said, “Sometimes people say there are two me’s, that I have a dual personality… the public persona is not really who I am: it’s a tool… to be who everyone wants me to be.” This is true about everybody because people will act differently around friends than they will act around their family.
My baby blue colored room shows the different side on me that the public does not see because they would not accept it. People also see that my room as feminine because of its brightness and all the similarities to Annie’s room. On the other hand in The Intimate Connection by James Nelson, it is stated that everybody is homosexual in a certain way. Examples would possibly be my baby blue room or slapping a teammate’s butt in a baseball game. Nelson states even if you do not like homosexuality, there is some in everybody no matter what.
Annie’s room contradicted the general idea of a girl’s room, with bright and flashy items and posters on the walls. Her room was simple because it had a bright but calm color on her walls but she did have a “girly” rainbow colored blanket. She also had what every girl has in her room, stuffed animals. She is following the stereotype by having these items around her. A majority of girls seem to have a stuffed animal or a special blanket in their room, but in both Daniel’s and my room there were no animals or blankets that were out of the ordinary.
Society has convinced girls that they must have something cozy and nice in their room, such as a stuffed animal. The room is a place where the real personality of a person comes out because they sleep there every night and have their personal items in their room. To find out the real me, somebody must visit my room to see what I have and the things I like. The room resembles the type of person somebody is and just by going to my partners’ rooms I have learned more about them. The idea that society can change how people behave and what they have in their rooms is unbelievable because many people just follow the popular trend and do not make anything unusual about them.
There were some small details about certain rooms that did contradict the stereotype which shows more of one’s personality and uniqueness.