So I’m moving into a new apartment, and I was told that the room had been damaged, but nothing could have prepared me for the fact that someone had carved Li Shang’s head out of the bathroom door and written “We must defeat the Huns!” on it.
you seem not to be very fond of the phrase "boys will be boys"? do you mind elaborating?
No, not at all.
Phrases such as “boys will be boys” are usually stated in the context of excusing or enabling rowdy, unsavory or downright dangerous behavior by insinuating that boys and teenagers are innately and unconditionally menacing, which is untrue. It suggests that socioculturally learned behaviors are biologically wired. This is a damaging presumption for a few reasons.
1. It sets the precedent for male violence and patriarchal learned traits in young boys and allows them to flourish into men who become belligerent and obnoxious. By stating that these traits are somehow organic as cell growth, it creates a society in which male chauvinism is normalized, empathized with even, because they can’t help it. It diminishes the opportunity for real discourse on the political nature and dismantling of toxic masculinity to occur, because by the standard of “boys will be boys”, its just how they are.
2. It cements the existence and legitimacy of gender roles and characteristics. By the inclination that boys are inherently violent, the counter assumption is that girls are passive, docile, nurturing and malleable. So when you have one half of the world that’s unanimously aggressive and the other that’s passive, abuse, coercion and manipulation become commonplace and unquestioned. There is hardly a phrase of “girls will be girls” but there are various statements that equate girlhood, and by that virtue, womanhood with shame, degradation and weakness (ie. “don’t hit like a girl”, “stop being such a girl” etc) and by these statements, male aggression and female submissiveness become the compliments to one another.
3. It blurs the line between culture and nature. The fact is that no classification of human beings are born a certain way. This assumption is immensely harmful and has been the catalyst to the existence of scientific racism and misogyny. Patriarchy is an unfortunate byproduct of politics and culture, not imminent. To pathologize boyhood and manhood in such a way is to stunt a man’s progression and obliterate accountability for one’s actions, but also creates a society that neutralizes it (as stated in point 1).
As some of you might already have guessed, I’m a fan of Japanese girl idols. One of the many, many idol groups in existence today in Japan is NMB48, a Osaka-based spin-off group of the (in)famous AKB48. NMB has a weekly show that’s surprisingly entertaining as well as educational called NMB to Manabu-kun, in which the members of NMB and a few comedians listen to guest lectures by experts in various fields.
Back on May 15th, the theme of the episode was pataphysics/the science of sci-fi. One of the topics of the lecture held by university professor Yanagita Rikao was the age-old question of "WHY ARE MAGICAL GIRLS NEVER ATTACKED WHILE TRANSFORMING???"
This was his answer, based on the magical girl series Futari wa Pretty Cure.
Question: The transformation scenes in Pretty Cure are very long, so why don’t the bad guys attack the girls in the meantime?
"Even when I was little, I was thinking ‘Hey! Attack them now!’"
"I found this odd as well, so I watched the transformation scene many times. And what I noticed is, when the Pretty Cures yell ‘Dual Aurora Wave!’ and transform, a rainbow-colored column of light shoots up from the ground, going BOOM!"
"And then the Pretty Cures levitate, and go up into the air. Based on this, I believe the protagonists of Pretty Cure are being held up in the air by the power of light.”
"When we think of light, we usually think it heats up things or lights up things. But in reality, light has the power to hold up things as well."
"When the sun is beating down on us in the summer, the human body is being pressed downwards by the sun beams with a force of 2/100,000g.”
"But this is only about a one-hundred of the weight of a mosquito, so no matter how hot it is, we don’t feel that sunlight is heavy."
"So that means the light holding them up must be extremely strong. If we assume that the two Pretty Cures each weigh about 45kg and do some calculations…”
"It means the light during the transformation must have the energy of 2,100,000,000kW per 1m2.”
"While the entirety of power that Japan is capable of generating is only 100,000,000kW.”
"So they’re using 21 TIMES the amount of energy the whole of Japan can generate.”
"So what would happen if a bad guy jumped in to try to sabotage their transformation?"
"He would EVAPORATE INSTANTLY.”
“DEATH AWAITS ANYONE WHO DARES TO DISRUPT A PRETTY CURE TRANSFORMATION.”
"So this means the best thing to do would be to transform close to any bad guys."
"Yes. They are the strongest while they transform, and are practically invincible.”