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Gender Roles: Living Unfulfilled Lives

David Patch ENC1101 Professor N. Leon February 17, 2012

He seems to enjoy their company greatly and always appears energized and very happy when he is around them. these men don’t know how to handle their emotions or what their role as husbands. At home though. laid back men and hand over leadership and control of their household to their wives. He learns to enjoy his . leaving his wife wondering where he is. At work he puts on an act that he has it all together. but forgets his daughter’s recital and chooses not to be interested in his son’s hobbies. or high risk jobs that drain them can either turn into apathetic. Adam chooses to spend free time with his friends and co-workers. Adam. In the movie Courageous.Patch 2 In their childhood. He forgets commitments he makes to his family and chooses to sit in front of the television and detach himself from his family life. behaving the way everyone would expect a policeman to behave and keeping a false appearance. when he is relaxed. but his true self comes out at home. Adam does end up realizing the error of his ways and decides to invest time and effort to become a leader at home. but once he gets home he is too tired to be involved with his family. but at home he becomes forgetful. who is a law enforcement officer and the main character in the movie. He allows his family life run on its own. He stays after hours to file paper work. works long hours. and passes on his responsibilities to his wife. Adam easily remembers warrant orders and evidence he has to handle. The movie also implies that men who hold positions of authority. fathers and men should be. The movie Courageous shows how this pattern can affect men who are in the police force and the criminals they pursue. lazy and apathetic. At work he represents a strong minded. His friends look to him for leadership and approval. Adam shows us that apathy can eventually overcome even the strongest minded men when tired and overwhelmed. He doesn’t want to participate in the town’s Father and Son 5k race. and people portray them even when that is not who they really are. people learn what their society approves as proper behavior for men and women. and he seems to enjoy the role. he seems too drained to socialize. positions that demand respect. sharp and active man. Most families encourage boys to be strong and tough regardless of the circumstances. Instead of spending quality time with his family. exactly what a police officer is expected to be. or they compromise their values and do whatever it takes to fulfill their needs. These concepts stick. even though his son asks him repeatedly. Trying to be manly.

He is good looking. Shane feels disappointed with his salary and feels he deserves more than he makes and he complains about having to give a third of his pay to his son in alimony. is what the culture would picture as a perfect role model for masculinity. and . when he finds a way to make additional money by stealing. A prime example of this can be seen when he steals drugs from the evidence room for his own monetary gain. speaks with confidence and authority and has made his life career as a police officer to provide protection to fellow citizens. Shane shows his disregard for the law he is supposed to enforce. Derrick gets badly beaten as part of the gang initiation. After being caught stealing evidence and thrown into jail. The movie portrays that Adam’s role as a police officer does not have to conflict with his role as a husband and father. he feels he is not being adequately compensated for what he has been given from the police force. Even a man who society looks down upon for being a criminal. In the movie a young man named Derrick feels he has no one that cares for him. Shane. he has a new deck installed in his house. He feels he needs a sense of belonging and acceptance. clean and selfcontrolled deputy. a feeling not usually associated with these types of men.Patch 3 new responsibilities and being genuine in all areas of his life. all while given the appearance of strength and self control. While in uniform. Even though Shane loves his work and the authority that comes with it. Shane. Adam appreciates the feedback he gets from his family and friends as they see him as a true role model at work and at home. then selling drugs from the evidence room. He keeps his eyes on the criminals and is wholly committed to enforcing the law. shows us that even men who enforce the law can let their selfish pursuit of fulfillment keep them from following the law themselves. Adam’s partner. needs reassurance of being loved and wanted. he goes out to eat often and seems very focused on his own fulfillment and self-absorbed life. Shane realizes the error of his ways and asks Adam for help in making sure his son does not follow a bad path like he did. Shane is a powerful. by joining a gang in the neighborhood. stands tall. His lack of self control is evident when he knowingly pockets evidence to pay for his material desires. While complaining about lack of money.

many men still struggle between expressing their emotions and fulfilling what they think a male role should be. violence. these men remain empty and defeated. He then gets embraced by everyone in the gang while they reassure him that they are a family and he is part of the family now. This scene shows that Derrick does have some good moral values and chooses in this instance to do what is right instead of allowing someone to commit murder. meet expectations. It seems that even though modern society allows men to express emotion more fully than it had in the past.Patch 4 puts up with the pain in order to make it into the gang. Trying to fulfill their emotional needs. while acting like someone they are not. so he collapses and becomes cold and apathetic with his family. the gang leader decides he will shoot the policeman that pulled them over. Men who try to be manly and portray a strong. seeking a sense of belonging. just as these three men did in the movie. but turn into the opposite behind closed doors. while Derrick is in jail. Derrick is put into a situation of disagreement with the gang leader. even breaking the law he swore to uphold. As they get pulled over with a large amount of drugs in the trunk. he will feel even more pain. Derrick does what he believes is necessary in order to be accepted by someone. Shane being a very egotistic person resorts to any means to satisfy his wants. and their consequences. Seeking acceptance in the wrong places can lead men to a life of crime. and work on their true emotional needs or shortcomings. vocalize their thoughts. someone who is looking for love and acceptance in the wrong places. The movie shows how draining it can be for Adam to continue to hold leadership and respect throughout the day. the policeman that he had saved visits and mentors him. Towards the end of the movie. confident persona. Recognizing their true needs as men and . The movie implies that it is always hard for men to overcome stereotypes placed upon them. Derrick objects and grabs hold of the rifle causing the leader to miss. for men to behave like someone they are not in front of everyone. live with unfulfilled needs that they try to satisfy. Derrick had shared with him his regret and how having nobody in his life had led him to join a gang. Derrick emulates what a needy man can look like. Later in the movie. he had to act tough. sometimes by illegal means. drugs. Derrick believed that in order to be a real man. The movie Courageous shows how it is easy to live a double life. The gang leader warns Derrick that if he ever tries to leave the gang.

. these men were able to overcome their struggles. be true to themselves and achieve a better life.Patch 5 realizing the wrong ways of their behaviors.