Thursday, May 18, 2006

Manly Quote of the Day

From Art Carey's review of Harvey C. Mansfield's Manliness:

"The big flaw in Mansfield's argument is that he fails to distinguish between manly style and manly substance.

"Manly style is a guy who drives a Jeep; manly substance is a guy who can fix it. Manly style is Ronald Reagan playing soldier in war movies; manly substance is Jimmy Stewart, who actually flew numerous bomber missions. Manly style is seeming and appearing; manly substance is being and doing.

"There are people who look extremely manly, but are not. And people who don't look manly, but are. T.O., with his bulging muscles and chiseled torso, is a cartoon of exaggerated masculinity. On the football field, he certainly exhibits confidence in the face of risk. But because of his constant carping, his vanity and self-absorption, he is anything but manly.

"Fred Rogers, with his silly puppets and cardigan sweaters, was at the opposite end of the spectrum from Russell Crowe, Jesse Ventura and The Arnold. But he was confident of his belief in the power of love, and he had the courage to extend respect and appreciation to all, despite the risk of ridicule. The moral force of Rogers this soft, gentle man was fearsome.

"Indeed, a manly man can be a gentleman -- 'a manly man with polish and perfection,' Mansfield writes, gentle 'out of policy, not weakness.'"