Michael Offutt asks:
Why do boys or men seem to like dark, grisly things?
Great question, Michael!
The reason guys like grisly things is multifactorial.
Testosterone (more predominant in men than in women) leads not only to a different body habitus (muscles, strength, facial hair, etc…I don’t need to go on, do I? 😉 ), but also influences brain development, including aggression (though aggression studies are inconclusive, meaning, some studies show increased aggression with increased testosterone and some studies show increased aggression with decreased testosterone. *sigh* It’s the way science is, sorry. *shrugs*).
Gender role theory states that boys and girls learn gender appropriate behavior from their family and culture. That means boys liking physical play and getting dirty and girls learning how to use their easy bake ovens is due to socialization.
Interestingly, early adaptive strategies led to men being the hunter/gatherers (because of their stronger physique) and women being the child-rearers and food preparers.
Don’t forget, a person’s masculinity and femininity falls on a spectrum. Some women cane be, well, masculine and some men, ahem, can be feminine.
For example, I preferred car toys and trucks over dolls and dresses growing up, but I am, most decidedly, a woman. 😉
(This last dude is Eddie Izzard, by the way. Very funny comic…and EXECUTIVE Transvestite. 😉 )