Paul Theroux'x Being a Man

             A 3-page paper on the topic of the Paul Theroux's "Being a Man.” The paper analyzes the structure of the writing. No sources are used besides the source material.

             The tone and style of Paul Theroux's "Being a Man” is that of a light nature, using exaggeration and stereotyping to not only convey its message but to give the entire piece and enjoyable and fun sense. One of the keys to Theroux's writing is slight misdirection, in which a writer sets up topic for discussion but ultimately has a much different topic in mind. We see this from the opening quote from the alleged "Fetishism” chapter of a book, one gets the sense that Theroux's intent is to point you in one direction so that you don't see real agenda until it is sprung on you. In this case the notion of men and fetish for woman's shoes makes one feel that he is about to analyze why this might be, but instead we find that the shoe fetish is unimportant as it is the idea that being man leads people to think differently of you.

             What this piece turns out to really be, is his taking to task the way society has determined that men should act and the inability for men to avoid the imposition of that stereotype without some how being considered, different at best or "not manly” at worst. And it is in the second paragraph where he sets up the notion of what the world believes a man to be and how that is both ambiguous and constraining at the same time. While there is no definition beside biological of what a man is, he points out that the notion of manliness "insists on difference and connives at superiority.” While he is obviously exaggerating somewhat in the insistence that he finds the notion of manliness to be "insulting and abusive, and the thought that he actually dislikes being a man, the use of those strong opinions allows the future analogies to ring more true and deeper rather than merely being a shallow complaint.

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