Masculine ideology embodies a feeling of the inherent superiority of the male of the species. He has an intrinsic right to dominate females and to lead his family. He must always appear to be morally upright, strong, ambitious, energetic, virile, brave and able to direct. He should not appear effete, or have a preference for homosexuality, or do any work which he considers to be in women's domain. These very rigid role ideas cause social inflexibility and constitute a barrier to progress. Male chauvinism relegates women to subordinate roles in all spheres, while it does not actually deny them entry. Consequences for women may be alienation, apathy, stress or impoverishment. Attitudes of male supremacy may also induce a certain amount of discrimination against men as a direct result of the broad discrimination against women that is generated.
In Soviet Russia men were permitted to be selfish and passive and to avoid all responsibility. Communism gave women the right, and the necessity, to work as equals, but a notion of male superiority remained. Women worked at their paid jobs and did all the housework and child-rearing. Men did not help, nor were they expected to help in the home.
1. Macho attitudes have been linked to maltreatment of animals, insensitivity to the environment, and suppression of instincts of compassion.
2. The universalization of masculine values has led to the instrumental and anthropocentric concepts which shape current relationships between people and with nature, as well as to ideologies which promote military solutions. The blueprint for masculinity is a blueprint for self-destruction. It is a process so deeply embedded in the male consciousness, that awareness of its course and of its end has been lost. The masculine imperative, the pressure and compulsion to perform, to prove himself, to dominate and to live up to the masculine ideal has superseded the instinct to survive. This androcentric definition of reality continues to be used to justify hierarchy, militarism and capitalism as being either inevitable or as necessary to control human impulses.