A self-identified male “feminist” wrote a more than 1,000-word piece about how much he hates that he loves to grill because he is “uncomfortable with the pleasure [he takes] in something so conventionally masculine.”
“I take food prep a little too seriously, curtly brushing others out of the way when I step up to the kitchen counter,” Jacob Brogan writes in a piece for Slate. “Am I shoving others out of the way because it makes me feel like a man? Have I become some sort of monster?”
Yes — he’s worried his enthusiasm for grilling may make him a “monster.”
Lest you think Brogan is overreacting, he offers a lot of reasons for why he’s so concerned about liking to do something so totally normal. One of them: Advertisers portray grilling as a form of male bonding, or, as he puts it, “enable what scholars call homosocial contact, a kind of same-sex intimacy that deflects the supposed danger of sexual contact between men but allows them to confirm their masculinity by excluding women.”
“Grilling, in other words, allows these characters to cozy up to one another while still maintaining their understanding of themselves as truly manly men,” he continues.
#related#Brogan also worries that since grilling happens outside, and other forms of cooking happen inside, the fact that grilling is seen as a “man” thing perpetuates the idea that women should stay inside or something:
“Unlike most other traditionally ‘feminine’ forms of domestic cooking, grilling typically happens outside, and hence in the public sphere,” Brogan writes.
“The putatively masculine quality of grilling may derive in part from the old public-private gender split,” he writes. “In that sense, it shares a common cause with the belief that women belong in the home.”
For the record, I do not grill — but that is not because the fact that I’m a woman makes me reluctant to go outside. It’s because I don’t want to.