Friday, November 4, 2011

a tough day at curtis crane lutheran academy

Yesterday, I read a piece on CNN's website by William J. Bennett called Men Become the Target of Jokes.

It was kind of interesting to me, because Bennett points out something that I think is relevant about our culture, and he questions the depictions of manhood and masculine character traits which seem to be generalized by popular art forms (television and film).

I admit I don't know very much at all about TV shows and movies. It is a deficit, and I own it: I do not watch television, and cannot sit through most movies, either.

But a friend sent me a message on Facebook and Twitter yesterday that struck me as a strange and cosmic kind of coincidence to the Bennett piece.

A few friends had tweeted to me how they had written in Stick as their vote in the Opening Round for the Goodreads Choice Awards 2011 in the "Best Young Adult Fiction" category.

That was very nice of them to do that. Maybe 5 people I know took the time to do it.

I also do not read anything on Goodreads. Ever. I have an account, but I never read or write reviews there. I have said this many times before.

In the afternoon, I received a message from a friend who wondered why, of the fifteen "Nominees" on the Goodreads 2011 YA page, there was not one single title written by a man.

I do not know the answer to that.

I'll have to guess it is because men do not write good shit.

But I also wonder what kind of unstated message such displays give to Young Adult boys who happen to be readers, or who happen to enjoy creative writing. I would post a link to the page here, but I don't want to. I'm kind of offended.

I admit, too, that I have only read one of the fifteen books displayed as nominees.

I also do not read "YA."

But I wonder, too, if some intrepid and sociologically-minded reader could read all fifteen of these books and put together an aggregate image of the boys who float through the pages as characters, and what kinds of depictions of adolescent males are being presented to our American young adults as iconic and elemental images of our boys.

It could be an eye-opening aggregate, I think.