The Student News Site of Van Nuys High School

The Mirror

vnhsMIRROR.com

The student website of Van Nuys High School
Van Nuys, California
The Student News Site of Van Nuys High School

The Mirror

The Student News Site of Van Nuys High School

The Mirror

Unmasking the sigma mystique in modern high school culture

Among Hollywood hits like “John Wick,” “Blade Runner 2049” and “American Psycho,” the iconic characters portrayed by Keanu Reeves, Ryan Gosling and Christian Bale emerge as prime examples of the sigma male archetype.

Each of these characters embody a blend of self-reliance, independence and a penchant for marching to the beat of their own drum and paving their own way in life. They are

Clockwise from top: Andrew Tate, Ryan Gosling, and Christian Bale from the Dark Knight trilogy and “American Psycho” have become figureheads for the sigma male culture. (GRAPHIC FOR THE MIRROR | MILLIE RESENDEZ)

incarnations of the lone wolf, questioning societal norms while remaining charismatic and enigmatic.

Media portrayal of the sigma often highlights their detachment from materialism, sometimes celebrated for promoting a less materialistic lifestyle. 

Some media outlets present sigma males as individuals who are comfortable with their mental health struggles, framing it as a sign of strength. While it’s positive to see mental health destigmatized, there’s a danger of oversimplification and romanticization that might inadvertently encourage some to view mental health issues as trendy or fashionable. 

Another aspect the media highlights is the non-conformist and rebellious nature of sigmas, promoting authenticity and self-reliance. Similarly, some portrayals imply a disinterest in traditional romantic relationships, which could diminish the value of healthy, supportive connections. These portrayals vary across media without a well-defined and descriptive explanation of a sigma as there are many complexities in individual personalities and behaviors. 

In the ever-evolving landscape of high school culture and beyond, the sigma male has been getting more and more attention. This archetype has left a lasting impact on the way young people perceive themselves and others. Often misunderstood as toxic masculinity, sigma male culture does have its benefits.

It is essential to understand that the sigma male is not an official classification, but rather a concept that has emerged from discussions around traditional masculinity. Unlike the alpha male, who is often seen as dominant and assertive, sigmas are often portrayed as lone wolves, preferring solitude and independence over conformity to societal norms. It’s crucial to recognize that these traits aren’t exclusive to males and can be found in individuals of any gender.

As a relatively new term, “sigma male” doesn’t have a long history in sociology or psychology. Instead, it has gained its popularity through internet forums, social media and pop culture. 

The emergence of the sigma male concept and its origins can be traced back to discussions around masculinity and societal norms. It appears to have arisen as a reaction against traditional gender roles and stereotypes. Men who didn’t identify with or aspire to the traits associated with the alpha male began to adopt the sigma male label as a way to express their self-reliance and resistance to conforming to societal norms. 

This culture is known for its encouragement of self-reliance and introspection. The movement strives to instill self-sufficiency in individuals and promotes the idea of taking responsibility for your actions and decisions. 

In many cases, this has led to people’s personal growth, as one learns to navigate the challenges of life without relying solely on external validation or approval. Many successful entrepreneurs exhibit sigma male qualities by charting their own paths and challenging traditional business norms. They often attribute their success to self-reliance, resilience and the ability to think outside the box. As an example, Elon Musk’s determination to disrupt industries like space exploration and electric vehicles demonstrates the power of unconventional thinking and self-reliance in achieving remarkable personal and professional growth.

Sigma culture champions authenticity and non-conformity. This aspect can inspire young people to break free from traditional gender roles and expectations. It fosters an environment where individuals feel empowered to be true to themselves, express their unique personalities and pursue their interests without fear of judgment.

The popular TikTok influencer known as “syrianpsycho” is closely associated with the sigma archetype, significantly influencing and redefining the sigma concept through his promotion of self-improvement in terms of physical appearance and confidence. Syrianpsycho exemplifies this sigma image through his own physically attractive appearance. He underscores the importance of self-confidence by encouraging self-reliance and expressing the significance of self-improvement.

The abridged version of this article appeared in the Fall 2023 print edition. This is an uncut version.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Mirror
$410
$20000
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Van Nuys Senior High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

About the Contributor
Cristian Mejia
Cristian Mejia, Associate Online Editor-in-Chief
Cristian Mejia is the Associate Online Editor-in-Chief. He is a sophomore in his first year of journalism. Aside from journalism, he is vice president of the ACSL club and enjoys coding projects. After graduating high school, he plans to attend a four-year college and major in computer science.  
Donate to The Mirror
$410
$20000
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

Comments are encouraged and appreciated. All comments are moderated. Please limit all comments to the topic of the post. Observe proper online behavior rules: No name-calling, profanity or personal attacks. ALL inappropriate content will be immediately removed.
All The Mirror Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *