The 8 Masculine Archetypes
Hello and welcome back to the blog my loves!
Today I felt like it was time to put into writing a few thoughts on masculinity that I've had floating around my mind palace for the past several months.
When I picture the "ultimate" masculine man, I immediately envision scenes of the Spartans from the movie 300. This unabashed and exaggerated version of masculinity is a true portrayal of physical and mental excellence, ambition, courage, and sacrifice. The men in this film (and history) fought to the death, sacrificing their lives to save their country and family, earning eternal honor and respect in the process.
But I believe that the Spartan man is not the only way for a man to portray masculine ambition, courage, and excellence. Today I want to portray a diversity within masculinity so that we might have a fuller sense of what it means to portray these traits, and be more aware of what masculinity looks like in a variety of men. So, let's dive into my 8 Archetypes of Masculine Men! Enjoy!
1. The Cowboy
(Aragorn Son of Arathorn, Ranger of the North: the ultimate Cowboy)
Now, I HAD to begin with The Cowboy as it is an oft-referenced masculinity trope in American pop-culture. The idea of the calm and collected "lone-ranger" has been cemented in the collective cultural memory, and honestly, it IS a really good example of masculinity.
The masculinity of The Cowboy is shown in his natural confidence, affinity for risk-taking, and fierce independence. The Cowboy welcomes adventure, danger, and opportunities to push his skills and strength to the limit because he knows who he is and what he is capable of. His view of self is completely built upon his own perspective, and he remains entirely uninterested in how the surrounding society views him.
The cool and collected focus of the Cowboy often means that it is difficult to rile him up, but it is not uncommon for him to be entirely misunderstood by others. His confidence might be mistaken for cockiness, and his independence might be mistaken for coldness. However, The Cowboy will always be fiercely protective and loyal towards those who have won his respect and trust.
Underneath all the bravado, The Cowboy has a warm and passionate heart, ready to remain loyal to the right woman. If you manage to lasso yourself a Cowboy, it's important to show him you TRUST and RESPECT him as much as you can. He will want to know that you trust him, even as he pursues his adventurous risks. He is going to want to feel supported to explore his freedom, but don't be afraid to remind him that you're his home base, and that he can build his ranch with YOU.
Being in a relationship with a Cowboy is not always easy, but if you're willing to take the dive with this confident man, life will DEFINITELY be fun. I would know: my husband is a Cowboy through and through!
2. The Intellectual
(Mr. Sherlock Holmes himself!)
Interacting with a man fully developed in his intellectual masculinity can be quite inspiring and invigorating: there is NOTHING like an intelligent man to get a woman's heart going! However, it is important to note that The Intellectual can take on many forms.
Instead of defining this archetype by a particular field, we should instead define The Intellectual as a man who pursues excellence in his chosen field. Not limited to sciences and mathematics, you can find The Intellectual in virtually any field. Intellectuals can be engineers, doctors, philosophers, pastors, historians, mechanics, businessmen, and SO much more.
Regardless of his chosen field, the common theme of The Intellectual is that he is always seeking complete knowledge and mastery. He seeks to ambitiously dominate his field, soaking up as much knowledge as possible while discovering new knowledge along the way.
These men are often very interested in spirited debates, ongoing studies, and changing their field of study as they master their interests.Remember, these men can be intellectuals of a VARIETY of fields, including philosophy, history, computers, cars, hunting, and so much more.
If you manage to snare yourself an Intellectual, make sure that he is humble! These types of men can be extremely knowledgable, but without humility, he's going to drive you, and everyone else, CRAZY! Always ask questions, remain supportive, and remember that when you marry an Intellectual, you're marrying his mind as much as his heart!
3. The Sergeant
(Captain America: structure embodied)
Ah, the Sergeant: the man who loves order, structure, and logic. He frames his life, his plans, and even his home in the organized manner of a man running a battalion, and yes, we love him for it!
In contrast to chaotic and energetic femininity, The Sergeant is precise, demanding, and extremely capable. He values logic over emotion and sees the world through an intensely black-and-white lens.
The Sergeant is admirable and attractive due to his fierce tenacity and cutting logic. He radiates masculinity through his rigid confidence, ability to create structure, and willingness to take the lead. His ability to see through the nonsense of life is incredibly attractive, especially to our more laissez-faire and creative sisters.
However, The Sergeant can also become extremely grating to be around if he fails to learn how to compromise his rigid personality. As The Sergeant grows and matures, it will be important for him to include a little more complexity and nuance into his naturally inflexible worldview.
In total, a Sergeant who is acutely aware of his overwhelming rigidity, and willing to make concessions in his world-order for those he loves is an ASSET and a delight to be around. I know a few Sergeants in real life, and they make incredible fathers, with their affinity for structure coming in handy amidst the chaotic reality of children and family life. The key for these men is to use their excellent ability to take control in a way that blesses others, rather than frustrates them.
These men are incredibly important in our world, and it would be tragic if they were not here to help us stay in order! If you find yourself married to a Sergeant, don't be afraid to let him take the lead, but remember that he might need a gentle reminder to include you in his world-building every so often!
4. The Artist
(Singer-Songwriter John Mayer)
The Artist... The Poet.... The Musician... call him by what name you will; this man is a CREATIVE at heart, potentially emotional or even introspective. He might have more moods and feelings than your average man, but the Artist can hold his place in the masculinity ranks as well as the next man!
Ultimately, The Artist's masculinity resides in his creative drive; the mastery and building up of beauty, ingenuity, and thoughtful expression through word, visuals, music, or art. His emotions may drive him towards creation and expression, and more likely, his desire could be to EVOKE emotion through the craft of his work.
These men are incredibly important, as they can turn the world on its head through design, musicality, and expression of the written word. The depth of the human experience can be interpreted and described by The Artist in ways that other men could never describe. This difficult feat takes massive amounts of masculine courage, ambition, and excellence.
Remember, masculinity is not just about dominating situations or life; it is about excellence, performing skills and ambitiously conquering them. Some of THE most inspiring masculine men in history have been Artists; Leonardo DaVinci, Michelangelo, and Mozart to name a few! The mastery of an art form is no small task, and should be treated with respect and honor.
The Artist's intense drive to express, create, and innovate language, music, and visuals is absolutely an expression of masculine excellence and mastery. If you find yourself with a sensitive Artist, try to encourage him in his craft, creativity, and accomplishments. It is important for him to feel seen and understood! Creating art, written works, or music is NOT easy, and it's important for these courageous creatives to feel encouraged and stimulated.
5. The Connector
(Leonardo DiCaprio playing Jordan Belfort, disgraced former Wall Street stockbroker and subject of the film Wolf of Wallstreet)
The Connector is ultimately a man who is skilled in communication. He could be the "funny guy," an entrepreneur, a counselor, a teacher, or a skilled investigator. Just as The Intellectual comes in many forms, The Connector cannot be defined by occupation, but rather by a common theme and motivation.
The Connector is a man who knows PEOPLE.
His masculinity resides in the confident and persuasive charm behind his every word. The Connector is a master of people, and if gone down the wrong path, could certainly be a master manipulator. His charm, confidence, and ambition often allows The Connector to navigate a variety of social and professional situations with ease. He is comfortable on stage, at the head of the dinner party table, or managing large groups of people.
He has a knack for understanding people, but he also LOVES people. Connectors are MASTER communicators, and this can manifest in very different ways. He could be your favorite comedian, able to express the human experience in that PERFECTLY hilarious and self-deprecating way, or he could be a pastor or priest; willing to walk alongside people in the darkest times of life, providing advice and wisdom. The Connector could be dominating the business world, charming his way up the corporate later, or using his business acumen to run his own online company.
All charm and all class, this kind of guy is always interested in telling you a joke, brightening your day, and creating CONNECTION. My dad is the ultimate Connector; successful in friendships and business, outgoing, extroverted, and the life of the party. These kind of men provide a lot of stability to their environment through their easygoing and fun-loving nature.
Their confidence, ambition, and leadership skills often showcases their masculinity in a very impressive way. Lucky is the woman who gets to call a Connector her man!
6. The Challenger
(Martin Luther challenged the authority and office of the Pope by teaching that the Bible is the only source of divinely revealed knowledge)
The Challenger is the debater, the protector, and the voice of reason in our modern world. While he shares similarities with some of the other types of masculinity, the Challenger is set apart by his desire to share his voice, his thoughts, and to remain unchanged by the thoughts of others.
These men, throughout history, have been the voices of reason, of change, and of the weak. I believe that Jesus himself could be categorized as a Challenger, in the sense that he went completely against society, created massive waves of change, and involved himself fully in the world around him.
The Challenger is similar to the Cowboy in the sense that he does not mind going against the grain of society, but instead of removing himself from the fight to pursue adventure or ambition, the Challenger is in the MIDDLE of the fight, voicing his concerns, defending the weak, and helping history get back on its feet.
He is unable to remove himself from the conversation, and finds himself championing the cause. The Challenger is uninterested in fitting into the culture, and finds his focus rather on getting the culture to shift and change towards a higher or more evolved way of life. He is NOT a "yes" man, and would rather die than go back on his beliefs.
The Challenger will champion moral and religious causes, refusing to back down from a mammoth confrontation or task, especially if it is close to his heart. He is often seen in the midst of fights around religion, morality, politics, or societal norms. In our changing cultural climate, I believe that The Challenger is one of the most valuable types of men we can have in our world, and I hope to meet many more throughout my life.
7. The Inventor
(Elon Musk, engineer, business magnate, investor, and philanthropist)
The Inventor is of course a man who INVENTS! But invention is so much more than the lightbulb or quirky basement-built mouse traps; it is deep innovative thinking and the ability to view life through a different lens. The Inventor could encapsulate engineers, architects, designers, auto-mechanics, and many other kinds of men.
Ultimately, The Inventor is a man who loves to build and create. He could do this with his physical hands, or even with more abstract mediums like binary code or mathematics. The crux of The Inventor is not so much in the idea of creating something new as it is in the idea of INNOVATING. You can find these types of men exploring new ideas and ambitiously taking risks in their pursuit of their imaginative vision. The world is FILLED with Inventors, and thank the Lord it is, otherwise I would not have this computer to type to you on!
It is important to note that the Inventor is different from The Artist in the sense that he is more focused on creating from a place of thought, logic, and reason, rather than from a desire to create beauty or evoke emotion. I would even consider Tolkien an Inventor, in the sense that he invented an entire WORLD with his writing.
So, as you begin to identify Inventors, remember that it isn't just about inventing little gadgets or innovative apps; Inventors are involved in the creation of things, whether that is in the physical tangible world or more philosophical realms.
As you engage with an Inventor, remember that it is important to support his vision and work, but don't be afraid to challenge him along the way! These men can become quite tunnel-visioned if they are onto a good hunch, and need to be taken back down to reality once in awhile. But above all else, provide him encouragement and show interest in HIS interests! You might be surprised what you learn.
8. The Island Man
(Matthew McConaughey playing Ben "Finn" Finnegan, treasure hunter in Fool's Gold -2008-)
Now, I could have evened this list out at a nice long list of 7, but we CANNOT finish without including The Island Man.
The Island Man's masculinity teems out of his general laid-back confidence and relaxed attitude. He is open to adventure, laughter, and connection with others, and while he prefers to stay in a relaxed and peaceful mental space, he will definitely take up a new adventure or life experience if it means connecting with nature, people, or building a memory.
He is different than The Connector in the sense that his enjoyment of life and others comes from a desire to live a peaceful and relaxed life. He does not have as much of an interest in hard-core ambition, but he maintains his masculinity through his pure and unfaltering confidence. The Island Man is a rock to those around him, and often very confident, even when he might not have the credit to be!
The natural chilled-out personality of the Island Man can be a really great match for women who find themselves constantly anxious or stressed out in life, and in need of a peaceful companion. His relaxed demeanor and fun-loving attitude can add SO much joy and spark to life, however, it must be noted that this type of masculinity may falter if the Island Man fails to find inertia. It's good to be confident and laid back, but that doesn't mean slacking or giving into meaningless shallow pursuits like partying, or laziness.
With a good foundation and positive direction, the Island Man's cool demeanor and peaceful presence is a JOY to have around.
Alright my loves! That is all I have for today! I have officially run out of writing steam. In total, I hope we can remember that men are incredibly diverse in their personalities. I believe that by paying attention to the different needs of our men based on their personalities and interests, we can become better wives, lovers, and companions.
Let's never forget that just as God created women to be uniquely different within their femininity, He also created men to fulfill different roles in this big beautiful world.
I hope you celebrate your man today; appreciating his different quirks and encourage him the way he needs most.