- Paperback: 192 pages
- Publisher: Anchor Communications LLC (June 3, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0935633375
- ISBN-13: 978-0935633375
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.3 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 8 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #578,776 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Understanding Manhood in America
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
This book is a wonderful read for those interested in the development of the mature masculine in an increasingly matriarchal society.
But you don't have to be a Mason to appreciate this book. It would also be meaningful to men of other fraternities, as well as anyone else interested in the issues of manhood in America.
One of the most significant points Davis makes is that fatherhood encompasses all that the archetypal man should be, whether literally as a parent of children, or allegorically as a leader and mentor to other human beings. You won't find any narrow stereotyping about masculinity in this book.
Likewise, you will not find Davis attempting to justify an exclusively mascuiline fraternity by bashing women. Davis argues that men simply need a place in society where they can be psychologically intimate with other men. Men need a place where they can join together in exploring the archetypes of manhood rather than being bombarded by the shallow stereotypes of manhood that are fostered in many, if not most, social venues. Masonry is designed to provide the perfect atmosphere for men who realize these needs in themselves.
Though Brother Davis is very clear in decrying the loss of depth in many Masons' initiatory and fraternal experience, he is refreshingly upbeat about the Craft's potential to adjust to modern times and meet the needs of the current and next generations of American men. In particular, he notes some of the roles that the Internet is already playing in our fraternal life, and expects that it will have a major transformative effect. I couldn't agree more, because we can already see that the major positive reforms in Masonry are happening at the grassroots level via websites and discussion groups. Try as they might, the old guard of Masonic stodginess will not succeed in controlling these movements. The more they resist Masonic reform and revitalization, the more they violate our fraternity's spiritual connection to the values and philosophies of the Enlightenment, and that Spirit is stronger than them.
Anyway, get the book and see for yourself. Buy one for your lodge while you are at it!
Fortunately, men have found a cheerleader in Robert G. Davis. Davis' new book "Understanding Manhood in America" delves into what it means to be a man in 21st century America. This book is important reading for all men. "Understanding Manhood" shows men where we might find proper role models and - more importantly - how we can be good role models for others.
Davis presents the case that the modern male is missing something essential in his development. His observations come from interacting with literally thousands of men within one of the world's largest membership organizations, Freemasonry. Based on these interactions, he developed a deep interest in what defines the modern male. He has also studied the work of experts in the fields of psychology and sociology.
The first half of the book covers important, broad social themes in America over the past 200 years. Davis brings us from the Heroic Artisan of our agrarian past to the Self-Made Man of the pre-Industrial Age through to our present day circumstances.
In the second half of the book, Davis makes the case that in order to become men, in the true and traditional sense of the word, they must learn to work together and socialize with other men. This is no "grab your drum and head out into the woods" sort of advice. Davis's ideas are straightforward and pragmatic. His "Seven Pillars of Success in Manhood" are a very focused list of actions that men can take in their daily lives to become better men.
Two of the most important subjects that Davis discusses are those of marriage and fatherhood. The challenges and rewards of being a husband and a father are great. As a husband of sixteen years and a father of three, this section was very profound for me. As Davis notes, too many of us had poor role models of what it means to be either a husband or a father. Rather than working on the issues that exist in these complex relationships, all too often men choose to simply walk away. Davis suggests this happens because these men are acting as they observed their fathers having acted. However, Davis is also quick to say that the modern man must rise above that if he is to grasp what it means to be a man. The road to the "mature masculine" is not the "easy road"; it is one of work, responsibility and perseverance.
The final chapter of the book is a concise survey of the institution of Freemasonry. Davis is an active Mason. He discusses in detail how the world's oldest and largest fraternity might fit the needs of the modern man in his search to reach true maturity. Davis uses Freemasonry as an example of the types of male fraternal associations that can provide an outlet for men to build healthy relationships with other men in a setting that promotes fraternity, moral guidance and a safe harbor within which to develop more fully. However, there is no need for anyone to be a Mason to learn from this book.
In the main text and in the appendices, Davis describes Freemasonry as a journey to discover Self and build Character. He suggests that it is in the quiet of the Masonic lodge and not on the movie screen or basketball court from which the modern man can acquire their role models. Such a construct can provide access to the "Elders" who are so often missing in our lives. These "Elders" can provide guidance and examples of maturity where it is so often needed.
From a Masonic standpoint, this is a book that every aspiring Grand Master should read several times before he embarks on a "membership" program. There is a need in the American society for institutions that can assist men in achieving the "mature masculine", as Davis describes it. The institution that figures out how to deliver the solutions to the ills that Davis describes will not have a "membership problem" any time soon -- except for the wonderful problem of how to handle all the new members.
You won't agree with everything he has to say. But there is no denying that this book has plenty of good old-fashioned metaphorical rare meat for a man to chew on and draw nourishment from.