The Mask You Live In


The Mask You Live In

5 years ago 5 years ago Published by Leave your thoughts
This video was produced by The Representation Project.


The Mask You Live In (MASK) explores how our culture’s narrow definition of masculinity is harming our boys, men, and society at large, and unveils what we can do about it. Compared to girls, research shows that boys in the U.S. are more likely to be diagnosed with a behaviour disorder, prescribed stimulant medications, fail out of school, binge drink, commit a violent crime, and/or take their own lives. From a young age, we teach our boys to ‘cut off their hearts from their heads,’ and to devalue authentic relationships with themselves and with others. We encourage them to compete, form hierarchies, and utilize aggression, regardless of the cost. Empathy, emotion, and compassion are considered signs of weakness, and to be a man is to be independent, stoic, and in control. When boys fail to prove their masculinity and adhere to this rigid code of conduct, they are shamed and policed.

Because we as a society have failed to recognize and address the social and emotional needs of our boys, we see a nation of young men who navigate adversity and conflict with an incomplete emotional skill set. As a consequence, they experience anxiety and isolation, and act out through risk-taking and/or violent behaviour.

Lee, J. (2014, November). The Mask You Live In [Video file]. Retrieved from

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