The Curiosity to Explore Masculinity Episode 205, September 29, 2020
Speaker, writer, and storyteller, Vika Viktoria, is insatiably curious about men. She joins us to discuss intersectional masculinity, what it means to be a man these days, and what success and freedom for a man look like.
“Why do I care about men? — We do what we love, what we’re fascinated by, and what we’ve been hurt by. We’ve got to make sense of our pain.” ~ Vika Viktoria
Vika’s father was her first best friend, and that laid the groundwork for her seeing the potential for other men to be her best friends. Later, her grandfather’s loss inspired her to find a way to keep learning from men, so she started a series of global diners where she asked men, “What does it mean to be a man today?”
From years of leading global conversations with men, Vika lets us know what she’s seen as the top three values of modern masculinity, and what men report as the things most missing in their lives. Vika calls these dinners “a celebration of the best men in my life.” Vika also opens up about her “maneater” period when she decided to treat all men like the assholes she thought they were.
Vika and Andy discuss the power of story, including the many false narratives that create a stigma on men expressing their feelings. We must become conscious of the stories we believe are true because they serve as our foundation. Those beliefs are what we communicate to the world, whether we want to or not. Vika is an ideal example of how women can guide men to be more.
Grab the Real Men Feel Guide to Friendship for a list of places you can meet more male friends and get on the Real Men Feel weekly newsletter.
Topics and Questions Include:
- (2:44) What do you mean by intersectional masculinity?
- (3:58) Why are you so interested in talking to men?
- (6:23) Tell me about your underground diners for men?
- (9:26) You weren’t traveling the world speaking about masculinity, these dinners were a side gig?
- (13:14) Have you only met wonderful men like your grandfather in your travels?
- (14:06) The tendency for people to have a bad experience and “they’re all like that.”
- (16:00) Wanting to tune out when you hear “love yourself.”
- (23:52) The benefits of being well-traveled.
- (24:54) What are some values of contemporary manhood that your conversations brought up?
- (30:49) How does storytelling play a role in growth or healing?
- (33:26) Is there a need for women to be involved in men’s work as teachers and guides?
- (35:49) What are some of the stories men have been told about why they shouldn’t feel?
- (38:28) Andy, on the worst thing a young man can be told.
- (47:40) Is there anything you were taught about men when you were growing up that proved to be incorrect?
- (51:21) What do you wish more men knew?
- (52:28) What do you wish more men knew about women?
- (54:10) What do you wish more women knew about men?
- (56:04) What can you tell us about the book on masculinity you are working on?
- (58:46) What are you most proud of?
- (1:00:45) What’s the best way to learn more about Vika?
- (1:02:30) Vika takes over and asks, what am I most proud of?
“My father was my first best friend… that gave me this deep understanding that every man has the potential to be my best friend.” ~ Vika Viktoria
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