Sunday, September 9

Stereotypes (part II)

***Continued from Part I***
In part one, we have explored how stereotypes may often be the result of over simplistic analysis and unrealistic fantasies, which are unlikely to be met in real life. In this new chapter, I would like to assess the nature of the Italian men and how they can be categorized. Specifically, we will analyse the Neapolitan men as they are my prime source of observation. Like Neapolitan ice-cream, they come in three flavours: Lo Scugnizzo, il Macho Latino and il Figlio di Papa'. The fist category is what we will call, for ease sake, the "Scugnizzo"literally rendered into English as "Street urchin"; traditionally this term acquires a completely different meaning, however, we shall utilize the word "scugnizzo" to describe a category of Neapolitan men characterized by the following qualities: scugnizzi are incurable 'grown up kids' who generally tend to despise higher education, people in authority and all that law and knowledge encompass. They make a cult of their outward appearance: all of their clothing items are carefully selected in the respect of the latest trends and their hairstyles modelled upon the newest fashion - paying no attention to whether a certain style will suit them or not, neither to if the cost of the item may cause them to go in debt or even steal. Their image is identifiable amongst many: gel hard hair, structured like an engineering master piece (ideally sleek flat side parting and spikes at the back); piercings (generally one diamond on the left year); over-powering after shave fragrance, big labels tops, trousers, shoes, coats. They drive brand new scooters (most likely stolen) and listen to neo-melodic Neapolitan music or techo/house - loud. Tendencies to chauvinism, violence, rudeness, sleaziness and illegality. Expressive and extroverted emotional outbreaks to be expected. However, it is to be highlighted that the "scugnizzi" can be tender lovers, respectful sons and responsible parents, able to live by "honour"...whatever it takes.
The second category is every foreign woman's dream, il Macho Latino, the super hot, perfect body, sexy talking bold, daring and reckless ultimate manly man. Il Macho Latino, like his scugnizzo cousin, places a great deal of attention to his outer persona. Every item of clothing is indeed chosen with maximum attention to detail, tailored like a fitted glove to accentuate and valorize every secret of manly charm. Labels and brands mean very little compared to how something is supposed to make him look. The Macho Latino's, like their Barbie sisters, do not give much importance to their "inner beauty" - they may read about philosophy, history and poetry but that's because, of course, history has proven that it always works to pull. Jewelry is worn like a winning prize, with pride and arrogance, the more the better. The gym becomes a real sanctuary of beauty and beauty parlor's their weekly confessions. The Macho Latinos are witty, handsome, proud, self-confidence yet often lonely, shallow and dissatisfied. Commitment is,for obvious reason, not an ability on the Macho's list. Does it need to be?
Last but definitively not least is the "Figli di Papa'" category, the "Daddy's boys". Life has been fine and dandy for them: they come from a good, often excellent household. They have attended the best schools, lived in the best homes, eaten the most delicate foods, travelled the globe, speak several languages, wear fine clothes, go to university. Their summer attire consists of white linen trousers, striped white and blue shirt, blue pullover over their shoulders, designer trainers, big sunglasses, golden tan, golden Rolex, soft long-ish hair gently blown away by the sweet sea breeze as they sit onto their boat. Characteristics? They have everything, but rarely comprehend the value of what they have. They can be sleezy strong of daddy's money ~ not knowing that money doesn't always buy everything.


Tanya Heasley said...

ooo, where can I get one of those 'figli di papa' men?

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