Tuesday, December 3

What Men Like in Men: An Argument from 1902

Quite an interesting article son even though this was written in 1902, 110 years back. I quote the last para 

What then is the conclusion? Men like in men these traits: the honour that ennobles; the justice that insures the right; the reasonableness that mellows and makes plain; the courage that proclaims virility; the generous instinct that disdains all meanness; the modesty that makes no boast; the dignity that wins respect; the fineness and the tenderness that know and feel. But when one thinks of it more carefully, may he not sum it up in just a single sentence, and accept it as truth, that all men like a gentleman?

There isn't any definition of a gentleman although the above characteristics do apply son. You can't be born as a gentleman although upbringing helps. Some traits can be learnt as well. One thing which I missed above and that's a sense of humour and the ability to laugh at yourself and others. How about optimism? Surely a vital trait? Passion? The burning desire to do something?



What Men Like in Men: An Argument from 1902

Editor’s Note: The following article appeared in a 1902 issue of Cosmopolitan Magazine (which started out as a quality family magazine before becoming a women’s rag). I think it raises an interesting question: What do men like or admire in other men? Lots of articles these days are about what men find attractive in women or what women find attractive in men, but rarely discussed are the qualities that men respect and admire in each other. It seems like men sort of intuitively know what traits we respect in other men, but we often cannot articulate them. This article attempts to put such thoughts into words.
I’d be curious to know if you think the same traits that the author found noteworthy in men over 100 years ago are still ones that modern men admire in each other. What traits would you leave out or add in? Share in the comments!Please remember as you read this article that it was written in 1902. So the author has some opinions — particularly about women — that might offend modern sensibilities. “What Men Like in Men”
By Rafford Pyke
Cosmopolitan Magazine, August 1902

If you were to ask the average man to tell you offhand just what qualities he likes in other men, he would probably boggle a good deal over his answer. His first impulse would be to say, “Oh, I don’t know!” which is with men a convenient formula for avoiding thought upon unexpected or (to them) uninteresting topics. A little later, after turning the matter over in his mind, he would give you a catalogue of qualities to which he would be willing to swear. His list, however, would bear a strong resemblance to the “hundred-best-book” lists made my persons who sincerely believe that they are expressing their own literary preferences, but who are actually indulging in a bit of intellectual pose. Just as these individuals mention the books which they feel they ought to enjoy reading rather than those which they really read, so the average man will name a number of qualities which he thinks he likes, rather than those which in his heart of hearts he actually does like.

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