Proust provides concrete example of what common sense tells us; some men are more masculine and some feminine than others. But what do the words masculine and feminine mean? Proust's traits suggest some possibilities. Femininity (the opposite of masculinity?) consists of emotional sensitivity; artistic sensibility; a focus on manners; a tendency to timidity and nonaggressiveness; a nurturant, attached orientation to

and sexual attraction to men. Admittedly, all of these feminine

characteristics are stereotypic. They reflect an essentialist view of femininity, that there are core qualities to femininity, a Platonic essence if you will, which exist despite cultural and historical variations.