In this age of toxic masculinity, it’s safe to say the game has changed. Men today have evolved beyond identifying with the tired stereotype of a macho man that has to be virile, leading, decisive, strong, and controlling.
#WhatMakesaMan is the hashtag launched by Italian label Ermenegildo Zegna for its new 2019 Fall/Winter campaign. The aim is to build a community by asking a question that appears deceptively simple—and ultimately tap into a topic at the forefront of our collective consciousness.
So, what defines a man today? Ermenegildo Zegna attempts to answer this question in its latest campaign, starring the two-time Oscar-winner Mahershala Ali, in a fearless exploration of modern masculinity. The goal? To start a movement that redefines the outdated stereotypes and inspires a new generation of men to set their own rules.
According to tradition, a man should be brave at all costs—a standard that’s nearly impossible to achieve. The #WhatMakesaMan campaign suggests that recognizing and accepting your fears is the first step to overcoming them.
The fear of failure is one that many men experience in all aspects of their life, but the new Zegna campaign suggests that it’s all a part of the journey.
#WhatMakesaMan campaign is an invitation to change your perspective while offering a reflection on gratitude, playfulness, risk-taking, and dreaming: All essential trademarks of the modern man.
Yet the most delicate, raw, and ungoverned theme in the video is that of love, acknowledging the power that love has on men and their inability to control it.
The campaign is a wake-up call to accept the idea that you may need to let go, to allow yourself not to be in control. Its message suggests that you take things as they come, for better or worse, and enjoy the fascinating mystery of instability.
As a brand that’s been designing menswear for over 110 years, Ermenegildo Zegna’s mission is to guide men towards their social evolution. The campaign is an effort to rewrite the values of contemporary men, or at least inspire them to accept that “being a man” isn’t one-dimensional.
Watch the campaign videos at zegna.us.