Why Do The Youth Today Glorify This Toxic Ideal Of The ‘Alpha Male’?

Isn't it enough of a problem that violence is increasing in society? Why must we idolise toxic masculinity by glorifying the alpha male?

In the digital age, where every day introduces us to new phrases and terminologies, the terms “alpha male” and “sigma male” have been making the rounds, particularly among the younger generation. Intrigued by their frequent use, I delved into the online realm to decipher the true meaning behind these concepts, only to find myself confronted with a rather unsettling reality.

One of the initial search results defined an alpha male as “a male animal having the highest rank in a dominance hierarchy.” However, the deeper I delved, the more apparent it became that this definition merely scratched the surface. Articles with titles like “The Alpha Male Explained: 9 True Signs That You Are an Alpha Male” aimed to glorify this archetype, portraying it as strong, confident, assertive, and in control of its environment. According to these narratives, an alpha male possesses the ability to lead, motivate, and inspire, all while maintaining power over his peers.

A parallel narrative emerged in discussions about the dichotomy between alpha and sigma males. Alphas were characterized as extroverted, traditional, and aggressive, while sigmas were portrayed as individuals who kept to themselves, thought outside the box, and maintained a calm disposition.

There are real consequences of glorifying the alpha male

However, my curiosity was not merely academic. It was sparked by real-life instances, such as my queer brother’s encounters with his younger sibling, who, in heated arguments, identified himself proudly as an “alpha male.” This revelation prompted me to question the implications of such self-identifications, especially when used as tools for dominance, aggression, and, in some cases, as weapons against personal identity.

The articles I perused seemed to invest considerable effort in presenting the alpha male concept in a positive light, rooted in tradition and strength. Yet, as I pondered the experiences of my brother and observed the behaviours of many teenage boys in our neighbourhood, a sense of discomfort began to settle in.

The question that naturally arises is whether these self-proclaimed alpha males, particularly among the younger generations, truly embody positive personality traits. Are they really the leaders, motivators, and inspirations that the articles claim? Or are they unwittingly perpetuating toxic ideals that could prove detrimental to the future they are set to inherit?

As we examine the mentality fostered by the alpha male label, a troubling pattern emerges. The bravado, dominance, and aggression associated with this archetype may not be conducive to building a progressive society. In fact, it raises concerns about the potential reinforcement of regressive norms that prioritize power dynamics over empathy and understanding.

The discomfort intensifies when we consider the impact on future generations. What kind of society are we nurturing when young minds are indoctrinated with the belief that being an alpha male equates to success and superiority? Is this the blueprint for a future where collaboration, diversity, and understanding take a backseat to outdated notions of dominance?

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In a society already grappling with regressive norms perpetuated by patriarchy, the emergence of ideals like “alpha male” and “sigma male” is compounding the challenges faced by both men and women, including trans individuals. These notions, often celebrated in the name of tradition, pose a threat to the hard-fought battles for equality, equity, and feminism.

Why is this happening around us?

What happened to us – as a society, that we are in the point of such discomfort and helplessness? What has contributed so much to these ideas that younger generations are being dragged to make it a lifestyle.

Sure, movies & entertainment industry has a fair share in it as they promote content with exaggerated relationship dynamics, glorify dominance and submission, and often portray violence and foul language, making it look ‘cool’ – a statement of being a real man’ ! However, the question persists: can media content truly cause enough harm?

Well, it can indeed! The answer would have been different had the question been asked 15 years ago. In the booming digital era, content is not only easily accessible but also consumed incessantly. With the great power to access them, there is so little scope for guidance and discretion. As a result, algorithms are winning, and content is being crafted with similar genres and storylines, while alternate perspectives are losing, with no room for interpretation regarding problematic but cool ideas like ‘being an alpha male’.

The exploration of the “alpha male” and “sigma male” concepts reveals a complex and problematic landscape, especially within the younger generations. The examination of the alpha male mentality reveals troubling patterns – a reinforcement of regressive norms that prioritize power dynamics over empathy and understanding.

The question then arises: What can we do about it as a society?

Initiatives to raise awareness, promote critical thinking, and encourage open dialogue about these stereotypes are crucial. Education systems should emphasize emotional intelligence, empathy, and inclusivity. Media literacy programs can equip individuals, especially the younger generation, with the tools to critically assess the content they consume.

Furthermore, fostering positive role models and diverse representations in the media can challenge the narrow and harmful ideals perpetuated by the alpha male myth. As a member of the society, the content creators should also be held accountable and create content to actively engage in dismantling these regressive norms and promote a culture that values collaboration, diversity, and understanding over outdated notions of dominance.

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About the Author

Jimi Rani Duarah

Jimi Rani Duarah is a passionate and versatile writer who finds solace in the realm of words. With a keen interest in exploring various themes, Jimi weaves tales that provoke thought, stir emotions, and shed read more...

4 Posts | 14,652 Views

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