That's according to a Harvard psychologist quoted in yesterday's Los Angeles Times.
“As men have lost more economic power, more social power, they’ve wanted to look more pumped up,” [Emily] Fox-Kales said, pointing to the recent recession that disproportionately hit male-dominated jobs like construction and manufacturing. “Muscles have become an accessory, like pickup trucks.”
The piece in the newspaper is mostly fluff, focusing on the latest stars and their stupendous biceps, but it does include Fox-Kales interesting paradox, and a hilariously straight-faced graphic.
The piece also throws in some history, which helps make the point:
This isn’t the first time social forces have coincided with changing movie star aesthetics — the preponderance of bodybuilder action heroes such as Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone in the 1980s, for instance, came just as a generation of American women were marching off to work in record numbers.
Gotta love the remote in the American male's hand. Closest thing to a gun for a couch potato.