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Exploring Male vs. Man With Dondré Whitfield, Will Smith & Kevin Hart
by Dontaira Terrell
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minutes

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May 5, 2020

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4 Minute Read

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Exploring Male vs. Man With Dondré Whitfield, Will Smith & Kevin Hart

In today’s society, there is a preconceived notion surrounding the definition behind a male and a man. Many of us have a hard time differentiating the two believing they are the same. However, Emmy Award-nominated actor Dondré Whitfield challenges this sentiment in his latest release, Male vs. Man: How to Honor Women, Teach Children, and Elevate Men to Change the World. The book takes a deep dive into the complexities, nuances, and cultural ideas surrounding manhood. 

“Men are healthy and productive servant-leaders who bring positive change to their communities. Males are self-serving and stuck in negative cycles that we hear and read about daily,” he explained. 

The inspiration behind this playbook stemmed from many hard-earned lessons, including past relationships within himself, others, and his father. A complex father and son dynamic always in limbo due to Dondré’s father’s inconsistent presence throughout his entire life. Looking back, Dondré realizes and often emphasizes that “You do not have to be fathered by your biological, but you do have to be fathered. Every MAN needs a MAN.”

Men are healthy and productive servant-leaders who bring positive change to their communities.

Dondré Whitfield (Courtesy image)
Dondré Whitfield (Courtesy image)

To help him further encourage healthy dialogues among the Black male community, the New York native enlisted a few Hollywood heavy hitters to speak on their intimate journeys of transitioning their minds, internal compass, and overall well-being. Subsequently leading each of them on a deep-rooted exploration to become the absolute best versions of themselves. From Will Smith to Boris Kodjoe and Kevin Hart, these men share their experiences in the hopes of inspiring Black males to cultivate life-changing practices that carry into their homes, communities, professions, and legacies. 

By peeling back layers of emotional wounds, mental ties, and spiritual connectedness, these men share the unfiltered stories that both stunted and propelled their matriculation into manhood. According to comedian Kevin Hart, a rule of thumb he’s come to learn and accept along his personal path is “Pride has no value.” 

Related: Black Love Live Los Angeles: Vulnerability

Shifting the conversation and changing the narrative is only the tip of the iceberg in bringing this much-needed discourse to the forefront of our day-to-day psyche. Most importantly, showcasing the genuine value in nurturing and holding each other accountable not just for the betterment of individual growth but collectively for our community. Speaking on such issues with full transparency helps break down communication barriers, past psychological effects and equip our men with the knowledge, skills, and toolsets to become men rather than merely “grown males.” 

You do not have to be fathered by your biological, but you do have to be fathered. Every MAN needs a MAN.

Reminiscent of the African proverb, “Each one teach one,” these discussions serve as a gateway to help cultivate both current and subsequent generations of men and women to positively influence the Black familial unit. 

If you’re ready to level up, be sure to pick up your copy of Male vs. Man playbook and also catch the weekly digital series taking place exclusively on BlackLove.com and Black Love’s accompanying social media platforms.

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