Is Traditional Masculinity the Solution?

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Many psychologists argue that traditional masculinity is an issue we face today. However, some argue it’s the cure we need. One author, David French, wrote “Grown Men are the Solution, not the Problem”, published 2019 in the National Review in rebuttal to the majority of claims made on the controversial issue of masculinity today by arguing it is not the problem with men. With a claim that “traditional masculinity isn’t the problem, it can be part of the cure”, David French’s article “Grown Men are the Solution, not the Problem” would be convincing for a target audience of men because of its inductive reasoning, personal emotional appeals, and credible authority.

In his article, French sets out to tell the reader that father role models and the community as a whole are doing a poor job at preparing males for their adult roles as men. He discusses that although it is not easy to turn a boy into a man it is a necessary process. French begins building credibility with personal information regarding his son, citing facts and statistics, and providing emotional appeals. French first uses inductive reasoning along with research by credible sources to provide facts and gain authority to persuade the readers. French is arguing that traditional masculinity is not the issue and it is made clear that the negativity towards this idea is the issue. He makes us aware that masculinity is an important aspect and should not be forgotten. French believes that we live in a world that teaches boys and girls to “be yourself.” He goes on to state that the rule often applies to everyone, not only “traditional” male who has traditional characteristics.

The inductive reasoning David French uses would be convincing for men in various ways. French uses many data tables and real-world scenarios to influence readers opinion. The reasoning is based on facts which strengthen French’s claim and proves his credible authority. These sources include a study conducted by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis with data on the median wages between genders as well as an article from the American Psychological Association titled “Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Boys and Men”, August 2018 addition. Providing these sources to readers improves credibility by showing that he has background knowledge of this issue to support his statement. He uses these sources to state that “male role models…is therefore viewed almost entirely as a problem”, and argues against the claims the sources make (French). Because French uses inductive reasoning in his article as a logical source to support his claim it allows readers to be persuaded in his favor.

In addition to inductive reasoning, French’s personal emotional appeals likewise would convince the target audience of men as well. In the article, French is using pathos to call out to an audience of men stating that they have a role, a duty, and a calling to ensure that young males are rising to their call of masculinity. French claims that there are many people who do not share his beliefs regarding masculinity. He adds quotes from respected sources to show there are many who do not believe his claims that boys need to become a “grown man” (French). He uses an example from an article by the American Psychological Association (APA) but states they are wrong, he expresses that “With young men in crisis, the American Psychological Association wrongly declares war on ‘traditional masculinity”, to help us better understand his view on masculinity (French). French claims that the “APA... diagnose the wrong cause” when it comes to the issue of masculinity (French). He goes on to state that they APA considers masculinity harmful with which he does not agree. He concludes that the APA sees masculinity as stoic, competitive, domination and aggression.

French’s credible authority is just as effective as his logic and emotional appeal. Throughout the article, French uses many different credible sources, to build his argument. These include persuading the audience that the job of a father is tough because they have must be a mentor a leader to train their son to be a man. The use of words throughout the article was effective in creating and evoking emotion in the reader and perhaps causing a father figure to feel guilt. Speaking of “culture war against men”, “men are falling behind in school, committing suicide, and dying of overdoses at a horrifying rate, and their wages have been erratic”, helps create a stronger impression on the reader by providing serious problems that come along with masculinity (French). The writer is informed and uses diagrams and logos showing that men do continue to earn more money than women but argues that gap is closing due to a female economic revolution. He states these facts and is an informed writer. He uses facts such as “a strong, aggressive risk-taker can be criminal or a cop” to build his argument (French). His point is to draw his target audience of fathers, uncles, teachers, and mentors to raise strong males through stating facts.

Through David French’s use of credible sources, emotional appeals, and established authority he was able to achieve his goal of persuading his target audience of men that traditional masculinity is the solution. His transition from providing facts to evoking emotion at the end of the article strengthens his argument by giving the readers a personal story to connect to in a perfectly clear and organized fashion. The article was able to convince men by providing logical evidence establishing authority and providing an emotional relationship with the audience. David French’s article overall gets to the heart of the matter that traditional masculinity is the cure we need today. 

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Is Traditional Masculinity The Solution?. (2021, Apr 11). Retrieved December 2, 2023 , from

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