The Men Feminism Left Behind

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EMBRACE THE PROGRESS!

Snapshot in time: published 3 days before Donald Trump was elected to be the president

Problem

“While feminism has transformed American culture, our politics and the lives of women, men haven’t evolved nearly as rapidly. Women changed. Too many men didn’t. What happens next?”

Wisdom

“Men don’t need more masculine posturing or promises to restore them to forever-gone greatness. What they need is to make their own move toward gender equality, to break down the stereotypes and fetters of masculinity. Feminists, understandably, have focused on women; we have enough to do without being tasked with improving a lot of often-misogynistic men, too. If the white men who feel ignored, disrespected and most want to see their lives improve, they should take a cue from the great feminist strides women have made and start to embrace that progress. Life really is better with more fluid gender roles that allow individuals to do what they’re good at instead of what’s socially prescribed. Every feminist I know will tell you that men bring much more to the table than physical strength or a paycheck and that we would love a world in which men were free to be resilient and tender, ambitious and nurturing, expressive and emotional.”

CLICK HERE TO READ JILL FLIPOVIC’S INSIGHTFUL PIECE ON THE NEW YORK TIMES

Insights:
Feminism Update

“For women, feminism is both remarkably successful and a work in progress: We are in the workforce in record numbers, but rarely ascend to the highest ranks. Sexual violence is taken more seriously than ever, but women still experience it, usually from men they know, at astounding rates. Women are more visible in public life and create more of the media and art Americans consume, but we still make up just 19 percent of Congress and 33 percent of speaking roles in the 100 top-grossing films.”

The World Is Changing

“Still, young women are soaring, in large part because we are coming of age in a kind of feminist sweet spot: still exhibiting many traditional feminine behaviors — being polite, cultivating meaningful connections, listening and communicating effectively — and finding that those same qualities work to our benefit in the classroom and workplace, opening up more opportunities for us to excel. And while we do find ourselves walking the tightrope between being perceived as a nice bimbo or a competent bitch, there are more ways to be a woman than ever before. It’s no longer unusual to meet a female lawyer or engineer. No one bats an eye if we cut our hair short, wear pants, pay with a credit card in our own name, win on the soccer field, or buy our own home. Men haven’t gained nearly as much flexibility. The world has changed around them, but many have stayed stuck in the past. While women have steadily made their way into traditionally male domains, men have not crossed the other way. Men do more at home than they used to, but women still do much more — on an average day, 67 percent of men do some housework compared with 85 percent of women. Male identity remains tied up in dominance and earning potential, and when those things flag, it seems men either give up or get angry.”

Q: HOW CAN MEN ASK QUESTIONS ABOUT GENDER ISSUES WITHOUT BEING ATTACKED FOR IGNORANCE?
WRITE TO US BELOW.

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