HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Man of Steel and Velvet: A Guide to Masculine Development
Author: Aubrey P. Andelin
Publisher: Pacific Press; updated edition published in 1994
Language level: 1
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing and/or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing and/or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Recommended reading level: Older teen boys and adults
Rating: **** 4 stars (GOOD)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Andelin, Aubrey P. Man of Steel and Velvet: A Guide to Masculine Development (published in 1972 by Andelin Foundation for Education in Family Living, P. O. Box 3617, Santa Barbara, CA 93105; republished in 1978 by Pacific Press Santa Barbara, P. O. Box 3738, Santa Barbara, CA 93105). The purpose of this book is to teach men how to be men by helping the young, single man visualize the man he ought to be in full maturity and providing the mature, married man with a pattern to consider for more effectiveness in his role as a husband and father. Author Aubrey Andelin received his D.D.S. degree from the University of Southern California and has practiced dentistry in California and Idaho. He and his wife, Helen, are the parents of eight children and grandparents of fifty eight. Man of Steel and Velvet is the companion volume to Mrs. Andelin’s Fascinating Womanhood.
Following an introductory chapter on “The Ideal Man,” Part I discusses “The Steel” which represents strength, while Part II describes “The Velvet” which symbolizes gentleness. Every generation needs men of strong minds and courageous hearts who are not afraid of responsibility and hard work. But along with this fiber of steel there must also be a gentle nature with which men can appreciate beauty, love their families with honor, and adore womanhood. Basing his advice on Christian ethics as taught in the Bible, Andelin affirms that Jesus Christ “was the epitome” of masculinity, that “in no area was He lacking.” By carefully analyzing the needs of a woman, especially her needs in marriage, and correlating them with the masculine nature and temperament, the author comes up with an intriguing picture of a man with the combined traits of the firmness of steel and the gentleness of velvet.
The majority of those who have objected to the book seem to have been influenced to some degree by modern feminism which completely rejects the Biblical ideas that the husband is the head and the wife is to submit. And anyone who promotes such values is considered anathema to today’s leftists. They made such charges as it is “an acute example of Fifties male,” calling it “misogynistic” and “A bunch of holier-than-thou, self-righteous, sexist,…blowhard diatribes,” and saying that it is “Perhaps the most outlandish and misguided book ever published on the subject” and filled with “ultra-conservative hogwash.” One person even wrote, “I read this book back in college and just kept thinking to myself, how corny is this guy. Does he live in Mayberry and know Andy and Barn?” My, my. I thought the left was supposed to preach tolerance. They sure don’t practice it when they disagree! One may not concur with every single concept or suggestion made in the book, but generally it presents in a simple and forthright way what it takes to be a man and outlines the way to a man’s greatest fulfillment of his God-given roles.