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Gilbert Blythe and Toxic Masculinity

  • jomarch
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3 weeks 18 hours ago - 3 weeks 18 hours ago #100 by jomarch
Gilbert Blythe and Toxic Masculinity was created by jomarch

Gilbert reached across the aisle, picked up the end of Anne’s long red braid, held it out at arm’s length and said in a piercing whisper:

“Carrots! Carrots!”


The first time I read this popular scene I thought it was just mischievous fun. I have watched this replayed in film and is, from the article I read on this website, part of a lawsuit. But now that I have been educated on male toxic masculinity it becomes clear how Gilbert Blythe is a bully and misogynist. Shortly before attacking Anne, Gilbert pins Ruby Gillis's braid to her chair so that when she stood up it pulled out by the roots, so it's just not exclusive to Anne.

Definition from Wikipedia:

The concept of toxic masculinity is used in psychology and media discussions of masculinity to refer to certain cultural norms that are associated with harm to society and to men themselves. Traditional stereotypes of men as socially dominant, along with related traits such as misogyny and homophobia, can be considered "toxic" due in part to their promotion of violence, including sexual assault and domestic violence. The socialization of boys often normalizes violence, such as in the saying "boys will be boys" with regard to bullying and aggression.


I told my Gender Studies teacher about this scene and she agrees completely and even suggested this book should be pulled from the library because it could traumatize young women. I wouldn't go that far because I think there are many fine qualities in this work. That said, I am definitely seeing Gilbert in a new light and it isn't a good one! Who else saw Gilbert as a bully?

“Tomorrow is always fresh, with no mistakes in it yet.” ― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
Last edit: 3 weeks 18 hours ago by jomarch.

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1 day 19 hours ago - 1 day 19 hours ago #102 by cordelia
Replied by cordelia on topic Gilbert Blythe and Toxic Masculinity

jomarch wrote: I told my Gender Studies teacher about this scene and she agrees completely and even suggested this book should be pulled from the library because it could traumatize young women. I wouldn't go that far because I think there are many fine qualities in this work. That said, I am definitely seeing Gilbert in a new light and it isn't a good one! Who else saw Gilbert as a bully?


Oh I don't think it should be pulled from the library. I'm a bit surprised that an educator would even support such an idea. I think Gilbert was being typical for some boys his age. It seems he was trying to get attention too from the other girls.
Last edit: 1 day 19 hours ago by cordelia.

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