Why We Think Man Caves Encourage the Gender Binary

By: Kaitlyn and Sarah

When living at home, HGTV always seems to be playing on the television (we blame our moms). Basically most of the shows are about finding the perfect house to live in, interior decorating, spending money on weird things, etc.

One thing that keeps popping up on these shows is the need for a “Man Cave.” Some of the men on the shows base buying a house on whether or not it has a room for their 500” TV, epic stereo system, random collection of guitars that have never been played and pool table, because it’s important for them to have their own space to “escape.” They need a space that’s all their own, only male guests allowed. Really it’s just a grown-up tree house with a sign that says, “BOYS ONLY”.

This really rubs us the wrong way. First of all, all of the requirements that these men are looking for are complete stereotypes. The fact that men just like big televisions and pool is a complete assumption. The whole idea of a man cave in the first place is rather sexist and encouraging the gender binary. It’s the idea that men need to escape from their annoying significant others, and maybe children, to a space for their manly activities, to play some poker while smoking cigars and watching the tube. Is it assuming that the rest of the “home” is the woman’s domain? Or that women don’t also need an escape from time to time?

6a00d8341c630a53ef0168e8d8e04c970c-600wi Is it just presumed that a woman’s cave is the kitchen? Don't we all need an escape?

The whole house should be for both parties. This idea plays into the gender bias that men and women are completely different and have completely different interests. Heaven forbid if a woman wants to play video games or if a man wants to cook dinner.

A man cave doesn’t need to be completely filled with the assumed beer and footballs, just like a woman cave (or should we say cove?) doesn’t need to be completely filled with cosmos and fairies. If guy-friends are still making fun of a man for what he likes, we’d like to introduce them to the 21st century, where men and women can like whatever they want to like. The same goes for women-friends.

We’re all for the idea of having caves in the house (who doesn’t love to pretend to be a bear?), but we feel they shouldn’t be labeled with a gender, but instead just as “personal space” or something along those lines. Every person needs a getaway, but having a space forbidden to a member of the household seems a bit harsh.

Basically, if a man wants to blast Maroon 5 songs from his personal space, go for it. If a woman wants to lift weights in her haven, go for it. “Caves” shouldn’t be limited based on gender stereotypes. Men shouldn’t be the only ones who have getaways in the house. Women shouldn’t dominate the rest of the house causing a man to need a getaway space. If a cave is insisted upon, call it a “Bill Cave” or a “George Cave” or a “Hannah Cave” instead.

What are your thoughts on Man Caves?

Oh, hello!

Oh, hello!
We're Sarah and Kaitlyn, roommates from Milwaukee who started this blog to promote creativity and life.
Powered by Blogger.

Follow by Email

Blog Archive