Stoic: Not affected by passion; unfeeling; manifesting indifference to pleasure or pain. Webster’s American Dictionary of the English Language.
Throughout history this has defined the typical, or rather, the stereotypical man; it has even been the definition of the ideal man at times. Men had to be unfeeling leaders due to the harsh and brutal reality of their time, living conditions were less than ideal, children died young, wives died in childbirth, and the men were expected to provide for their families often in difficult working conditions. The question is, why has this stereotype continued into current times even in first world countries? Even the “poor” are extremely rich when compared to the age of the Roman Empire. Men today have a significantly decreased need for this self preserving character trait and, while it is slowly becoming less prominent, often when there is a large group of men together you will find them hitting each other as hard as they can and claiming it doesn’t hurt; is this to appear more “manly”? I believe that this can, in fact, be traced back to ancient times; men were designed to be providers or bread-winners, protectors, and leaders. Having been created this way it is not a trait easily abolished even when it is much less necessary.