Much discussed

Masculinity is a much discussed subject nowadays, and many have their thoughts about the subject. I could go on and try to put on ‘paper’ what I think, what is means to be a man, but Jack Donovan wrote a book called ‘Becoming a Barbarian’, in this book he describes Masculinity very good, in my opinion. Read this exert on Masculinity and let me know what you think about it.

Jack Donovan is the author of the The Way of Men — a straightforward, politically incorrect theory of masculinity that became an underground hit around the world.

He has appeared as a guest on The Art of Manliness, The Art of CharmMating GroundsRenegade RadioBlunt Force Truth and countless other podcasts to talk about his work.

Donovan has been blogging, writing and speaking about masculinity and tribalism since for over a decade.

He lives in the Pacific Northwest, where he leads a chapter of the infamous Wolves of Vinland  — an esoteric tribe of Germanic pagans.


Masculinity is tragic. Masculinity is a life long struggle, a gauntlet run against nature and other men, to demonstrate virility and to prove ones worthiness as a man in the eyes of other men. Masculinity is a challenge to honor, that ends only in death. A challenge to win, coupled with a guarantee that eventually even the best men will lose. Masculinity means being born a boy, who can only become a man, by becoming stronger, by overcoming fearfulness by becoming more competent and confident in his abilities, and by earning the respect and admiration of other males.



Every boy, is born cursed. Every boy will be tried and measured against others and he soon per sieves or understands instinctively. He soon knows, that the way of men, is the way of competition and strive. The way to manhood, is through the gauntlet and there is no end to it.


A title to be defended

Manhood is not a destination, but a title to be defended. The idea that a man should be secure in his masculinity is a bourgeois fantasy, invented by therapists and repeated by women. Every king, every chief, every world record holder and every silver-back gorilla, looks over his shoulder. Being good at being a man, just means that challenges get dialed up and the challengers become more formidable. This gauntlet must be run whether a boy likes it or not, whether he accepts it or rejects it. To reject the struggle is forfeiture, avoiding the struggle is an acceptance of defeat and a demonstration of spiritual cowardice. There are some who will applaud this kind of forfeiture as if it where courageous, but their despise-rs of masculinity and strength, they are foolish women or failed men or deceitful manipulators, who prefer men to be passive, for reasons of their own. However, accepting the faith of men and running the gauntlet of manliness means understanding that the fight is never truly fair, and that all men are not born with the same strengths.


Rigged fight

Accepting the faith of men, also means understanding that the fight is rigged and that every man will either die early or live to see himself decline. Every man who does not die in his prime, will live to see his body fail and become weaker, making him more reticent. Most men will live to see their fathers competence falter, then their own competence falter, and they will live to see themselves lose the esteem of men, the best an older man can hope for is to, have his achievements remembered and to be respected for his wisdom and consulted for his experience.

Understanding masculinity means, understanding that men can only reach their greatest potential through vital conflict and competition with other men, the way of men, is the way of the pack-hunt and Man is the most dangerous game.

Human masculinity is the evolutionary product of gang selection of bands of men who hunted and fought their way through far more perilous and demanding ages. Human masculinity, the testing and proving of strength, courage, mastery and the desire to earn the respect of a given group of men, requires conflict to thrive, but also to survive.

Eternal peace, is the death of manliness, the peace sign, is a death-rune


Strength can only be tested against resistance and courage can only be tested through risk. Competence matters most, when it is most desperately needed. Honor requires an honor group, a finite group of men, to stand in judgement of each-others virtues. No man can prove himself to every man, everywhere, and the expectation that men should have to prove themselves to every man and woman, creates a sense of utility. If the number of judges and the challengers is infinite, why bother? If every man is, both a brother and a potential threat, who do you fight for? Who do you become the strongest and the most courageous and the most competent version of yourself, for? How much can any one mans honor matter, when he must answer to, and be compared to billions of other men, of other strangers who do not and can not care what he does or how he lives, or whether he lives or dies. A man and his honor get lost among the numberless hordes. Because a man can not be accountable to everyone, without an honor-group, without a tribe, he is accountable only to his own ego.

A man without a Mannerbund can flatter himself freely, and he will be more likely than others would be, to except his own excuses



Most religions defer the final assessment of a mans deeds to the gods, but the judgement of the gods is far to conveniently postmortem.

Brothers judge you to your face, in the here and now

This phenomenon of masculinity, is a human universal, men all around the world and throughout history have shared the faith of men. In every dominant culture known, men have pushed each-other to be stronger, more courageous and more competent, they have tested each-other and shamed or expelled men who refused to be tested, who made them look weaker as a group. Manhood has always been demanding, it has always been a trail that ends only in death and it has always been tragic.

Tragedy of manhood

To compound the tragedy of manhood, masculinity is a human universal something that all men have in common, but universal-ism, destroys masculinity. Without separation, there can not be conflict and without conflict, there can be no vital masculinity. To say that you love every man as your brother, is not only a lie, but a resignation to impotence and a forfeiture of manhood. It has been said that many enemies bring much honor, and it is also true that without enemies, there can be no honor. Without outsiders, there can be no insiders, without them, there can be no us. Without us, there can be no honor-group, and therefore no honor.


Friends and enemies

The experience of being a man, is something all men have in common an experience shared and understood by friends and enemies alike, but the very nature of masculinity demands, that we go to our corners and fight it out. This drive to conflict, is the faith of men, it is tragic, but all life is tragic. We live, but we are destined die. All of our life stories, are a collection of highs and lows, of victories and defeats, of struggles and of overcoming. Without conflict no life-story is worth telling, without conflict and struggle, the answer to the question; ‘What happened?’ is nothing.

Like Odin and Thor, we know that we will die, but unless we fight, we are already as good as dead. Better to live vigorously, better to fight, than to simply wait for the end, in peace…



What is your opinion on masculinity, after reading this exert? Do you agree, or not?

Make sure to check out Jack Donovans websites:






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