In a 9.7 N.Y. Times book review of Michael Kimmel‘s Guyland, Wesley Yang summarizes the hows, whys and wherefores of the perpetually adolescent, emotionally walled off, under-educated, doughy-bodied, vaguely slobbish Seth Rogen-Judd Apatow male of 2008
“Back in 1960, 77 percent of women and 65 percent of men under 30 had attained the five milestones that mark a transition to adulthood: leaving home, completing one’s education, starting work, getting married and becoming a parent. In 2000, those figures had declined to 46 percent of women and 31 percent of men. One-fifth of all 25-year-olds live with their parents.
“‘The passage between adolescence and adulthood,’ Kimmel concludes, ‘has √Ǭ≠morphed from a transitional moment to a separate life stage.’
“Young middle-class white men feel the relative decline in their status particularly acutely, Kimmel argues. Their privileges are under siege. Women compete with them in the work force. Formerly deferential minorities demand respect. The values of consumption have eclipsed those of masculine production. And all of this new competition occurs in a context of general downward mobility. The response of these young white guys to such confusing conditions, Kimmel asserts, is to withdraw into a place he calls ‘Guyland.'”