From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
A boy is a young male human (usually child or adolescent), as contrasted to its female counterpart, which is called a girl; thus in the wide sense of both terms all mankind, and in the strictest sense youth, can be seen as the complementary pair 'boys and girls'.
The term "boy" is primarily used to indicate biological sex distinctions, cultural gender role distinctions or both. The latter most commonly applies to adult men, either considered in some way immature or inferior, in a position associated with aspects of boyhood, or even without such boyish connotation as age-indiscriminate synonym. The term can be joined with a variety of other words to form these gender-related labels as compound words.
Ongoing debates about the influences of nature versus nurture in shaping the behavior of girls and boys raises questions about whether the roles played by boys are mainly the result of inborn differences or of socialization. Images of boys in art, literature and popular culture often demonstrate assumptions about gender roles.