Thus Spake Zuska

I warned Jon, I did. D00d, that thread is for MOCKING MANSPLAINERS.

Now, here I will repost Jon’s mis-directed comment. Zuskateers, you may feel free to read (warning: contains mansplaing) or skip right over to the comment thread and post your own examples of Men Who Cannot Follow Clear Directions From Women.

SKM,

I used the word “system,” for a reason. I’m not opposed to the idea that there’s a particular kind of gendered condescension on the part of males in response to females.

The problem I have is the way it’s being discussed, in the sense that there are a number of conceptual problems with how the behavior is being described, and what constitutes such a behavior.

The other issue is how criticisms are treated. Take for example the response that I’ve just written to your comment. It’s an explanation, isn’t it? I mean, I’m pointing out what I see as a flaw. I could have started off with that instead of my “passive-aggressive” response, but I wouldn’t have gotten anywhere with it based on the reactions I’ve seen in this discussion.

I doubt I’m going to get anywhere with it now either. You can just keep pounding on the idea that I don’t know what I’m talking about or refer back to any number of examples of ad hoc reasoning in this discussion.

I know, I know, I’m mansplaining. Who am I after all to point out conceptual problems? Who am I to come into this discussion and treat it seriously when it was meant for fun? The freakin’ audacity!

Here’s a thought experiment for you. Let’s say that I agree with the premise that there’s a particular kind of male behavior that is condescending to females.

Now, let’s say that while I agree that this behavior exists and has certain identifiable qualities, more conceptual clarity is needed, in that there needs to be some sort of boundary around this behavior.

For the sake of argument, let’s also assume the following:

(1) that not everyone has a clear idea of where this boundary is and some of their examples may not fit the initial definition.

(2) the possibility of error, i.e., that some of you are potentially incorrect in identifying certain behaviors as mansplaining when they’re better described as some other behavior (may or may not be related).

(3) a male is actually able to participate in this discussion and disagree without being a mansplainer and the same goes for a female without being a FemaleMansplainer

Okay, if you agree with that I’ve written, I want to you imagine your perfect interlocutor, presumably someone that’s well-informed about the issues and the arguments. Imagine that this interlocutor nonetheless disagrees with some or all of your arguments. What criticisms would they offer?

What constitutes the best possible argument against this idea of the Mainsplainer? Can you play devil’s advocate and come up with arguments? What would they be?

Posted by: Jon | January 25, 2010 4:56 PM

Jon followed up with:

Not sorry Zuska, already posted.

P.S. I’m female. I posted under a friend’s name to see what my response would be. Oh, I know, I’m terrible for abandoning the sisterhood. .

You’ll have to post the thread as “snooty women who cannot follow clear directions from other women”

Posted by: Not Jon | January 25, 2010 5:05 PM

Oh, Not Jon. You haven’t abandoned the sisterhood. You have to locate, comprehend, and join the sisterhood before you can abandon it.

Comments

  1. #1 SKM
    January 25, 2010

    P.S. I am…Bum-bum-BUHHHH! FEMALE111!!!1!!

    BWA-hahaahhaahah!!!!! Wow, Zuska, S/he sure smoked you! Bwah-hahahahh again!

    Also, this: did Jon/not Jon NOT see my comment about being ignored as a moderator when issuing direct requests before ignoring your direct request? Bwahahahah a third time!

    And finally:

    I want to you imagine your perfect interlocutor, presumably someone that’s well-informed about the issues and the arguments. Imagine that this interlocutor nonetheless disagrees with some or all of your arguments. What criticisms would they offer?

    What constitutes the best possible argument against this idea of the Mainsplainer? Can you play devil’s advocate and come up with arguments? What would they be?

    Jon/not Jon seems to think we are all first-year undergrads* who have not thought anything through. Also, s/he assumes that we are automatically judging all male interlocutors as mansplainers. The point: you are missing it.

    _______
    *apologies to all first-year undergrads who do in fact think things through. Way to go: you are ahead of the game!

  2. #2 Michael Hawkins
    January 25, 2010

    I tend not to read caricatures of feminists very often, so I hadn’t seen the other thread until I happened to glance at this one. Since the other one seems to be filled up (and since this is the same topic with a different target), I’ll put everything here. (Gosh! Did I just mansplain?)

    I still don’t see where you’ve bothered to tell anyone a damn thing about why that picture is sexist. All you seem able to do is screech and whine about sexism just because women were featured not in a professional setting.

    But I guess I’m mansplaining again. After all, a mansplainer is just a man who is wrong about something while speaking with a woman. What an awesome definition.

    And if you read my blog post, my assumption that your post was by a man actually had more to it; I did see your picture, but I very well knew mentioning your appearance would be viewed as sexist. (It isn’t, but I eagerly await your declaration that it is.) Besides that, you’ve confused explanatory claims with normative ones. I never said my assumption was good.

  3. #3 SKM
    January 25, 2010

    my assumption that your post was by a man actually had more to it; I did see your picture

    Whooo–zing! Never heard that one before, I bet!

    “Screech”,” whine”…..*yawn*

    And yeah, Zuska, that other thread is filled up. Didn’t you know–threads only hold 69 comments! Now you know.

  4. #4 Zuska
    January 25, 2010

    Hoo-baby! Somebody better call PZ Myers and tell him how blogs work what with threads getting filled up after sixty-some odd comments. Let’s see…who could do that for him…I know! I know! A mansplainer! I volunteer Michael Hawkins!

  5. #5 FrauTech
    January 25, 2010

    Thank MAN-ness, because here I was thinking those women’s bodies were being objectified and reduced entirely to their sexual organs. But I was wrong. Thank The Man my WRONG opinion could be righted by His correct opinion. It’s like those up the skirt photos, I mean if you use a mirror or take the photo from the ground, what else is the photo supposed to be of? Sheesh. I sure know how to overreact. Probably because I’m a woman. Maybe I’m PMSing. I have to go write Thank You notes for all of the men in my life so I’ll catch up with you all later.

  6. #6 Comrade PhysioProf
    January 25, 2010

    Besides that, you’ve confused explanatory claims with normative ones. I never said my assumption was good.

    HIGH-SCHOOL DEBATE-TEAM CHAMPEEEEN OF THE WORLD!!!!!!!!111!!111!!!1!!! KA-ZING!!111!!!11!!

  7. #7 Zuska
    January 25, 2010

    Not everyone has all day to be tutored at length by Noted Mansplainer Michael Hawkins. Here is a shorter version.

  8. #8 PalMD
    January 25, 2010

    I am so glad you’ve gotten into film making. I feel as if my work on this earth is done now.

  9. #9 Michael Hawkins
    January 26, 2010

    Hoo-baby! Somebody better call PZ Myers and tell him how blogs work what with threads getting filled up after sixty-some odd comments. Let’s see…who could do that for him…I know! I know! A mansplainer! I volunteer Michael Hawkins!

    Yes, I must have meant I literally could not post in the thread. I couldn’t have possibly been referring to the lengthy posts and back-and-forth already dominating the comment section. I’m just a dumb man, right?

    Anyway, you have nothing of substance to add then? It’s caricatures like you that undermine the value of feminism – and more importantly, the value of an equal landscape.

    Thank MAN-ness, because here I was thinking those women’s bodies were being objectified and reduced entirely to their sexual organs. But I was wrong. Thank The Man my WRONG opinion could be righted by His correct opinion.

    Isn’t part of the argument here that one side (Franks’) is pro-feminism whereas the other side (mine) is crazy sexist? If that is so, then I’m not sure why you would want to reduce each position to mere opinion. I’m not willing to insult feminism so drastically. (Gosh, there I go having a point of view while carrying around all these pesky Y chromosomes.)

    Of course, you could always just point out reasons why those images are sexist. So far the focus on “boobs and crotch” has been pointed out, but that fails pretty hard given that the same areas are the points of focus in any TV news story on obesity – for both sexes. So what else is there? I’m willing to change my position in the face of a good argument, but no one is helping their cause by calling all my positions “mansplaining” just because I’m a man who disagrees.

  10. #10 nejishiki
    January 26, 2010

    Hey everyone. My girlfriend sent me here for some reason. What’s up?

  11. #11 Comrade PhysioProf
    January 26, 2010

    Hawkins, you hilarious fuckwad, who is it that you think you are even talking to at this point? I’m pretty sure all the high-school debate-team champeeeeeeenship judges are all in bed.

  12. #12 Rev Matt
    January 26, 2010

    “I never said my assumption was good.”

    If you don’t believe your assumption is good, then *why are you making that assumption and developing conclusions on what you clearly think may be a flawed premise*? And defending it so vociferously. Let me mansplain something to you: ex post facto declarations of “oh, well, I was just speaking hypothetically” or “that’s not what I really meant even though it’s exactly what I said” mark you as either intentionally dishonest when caught or just too dumb to bother debating with.

  13. #13 Michael Hawkins
    January 26, 2010

    Rev Matt,

    I used my assumption to point out that I could not be “mansplaining”. No one wants to address that. How could I be “mansplaining” if I thought I was disagreeing with another man? Whether the assumption is good or bad is another topic entirely.

    I have no idea how you think I’ve drawn any conclusions from my assumption. I thought the post was by a man because most message boards and blogs are populated by men. Furthermore, I believed Franks to be a man based upon her picture. What did I derive from this in my original post? How does this compose my premise that the CNN image was not sexist but instead was an objectification of the obese? Why does that depend upon whether Franks is a man or woman? And more importantly, why couldn’t a woman have drawn the same conclusion?

  14. #14 Rev Matt
    January 26, 2010

    @Michael I believe it’s been well established that it’s entirely possible to mansplain to another man just as well. Asserting dominance (to impress teh ladiez) by intellectually belittling other men is a long hallowed practice amongst men.

    I’m going to give you a free hint: If you think you might come off as condescending, you’re probably mansplaining regardless of who you’re talking to.

  15. #15 Comrade PhysioProf
    January 26, 2010

    What makes Hawkins’s douchebaggiosity so fucking hilarious is that he thinks the entire fucking world and everything in it exists to provide opportunities to WIN the high-school debate-team champeeeenship by CONVINCING other people with ARGUMENTS. It’s absolutely side-splitting that someone who acts like such a subtle rhetorician is so fucking pathetically ignorant of how real rhetoric–and not the stilted artificial rhetoric game of high-school debate-team–really works. Pure comedy gold!

  16. #16 eewolf
    January 26, 2010

    Of course, you could always just point out reasons why those images are sexist. So far the focus on “boobs and crotch” has been pointed out, but that fails pretty hard given that the same areas are the points of focus in any TV news story on obesity – for both sexes.

    Actually, there were excellent reasons posted in the other thread which you must have missed (maybe because they were written by women).
    The article was not about fat women. It was not about obesity. It was about access to health care for overweight women.
    The picture does not convey this in any way. Again, this was pointed out to you but you keep on like you didn’t read it.

  17. #17 Dick
    January 26, 2010

    Who is this “Franks” that Hawkins keeps jabbering on about? This blog is clearly written by Zuska, a d00d we can all respect. His picture is right up there on the left, clearly labeled as an “attack engineer”. Franks sounds like some whiney, earth-cookie (“gardening”), sickly bitch (migraines! give me a break! just an excuse not to please her man), and, as Hawkins has pointed out, blogs are written by men. Men! Always remember, folks, to assume that men (preferably white ones) are doing EVERYTHING, unless you absolutely forced into a corner and have no alternative. It is the way of the world.

    Even if Franks says she writes this blog, I’ll bet her husband REALLY does it for her. Men do everything. Amirite?

  18. #18 Michael Hawkins
    January 26, 2010

    Rev Matt,

    Franks went to the trouble of defining “mansplaining” (despite her claim that my request for a definition was irrelevant and silly). When she did, she was specific about it being explanation from a man to a woman. But I do see your point that it can be from a man to another man (and I did skim some of the comments from the other thread). Clearly, it’s far from “well established” that “mansplaining” can constitute any condescending explanation from a man, but how is that not sexist? Why is condescension such an inherent characteristic of men? Why can’t women “mansplain”? And if they can, then why have the term had all other than to trivialize any man who dares open his mouth about sexism?

    And how do you know I’m trying to impress any women by pointing out that news reports routinely show the mid-section of fat people while reporting on obesity? How do you even know my sexual orientation?

    But I’m still interested to know which part of my post couldn’t have been said by a woman and why.

    eewolf,

    Okay, the difficulty of health care accessibility for women was not conveyed in the image. So? That wasn’t conveyed in the Health.com image either. Why does a tenuous relation between image and article equal sexism? What about all the news reports which feature the mid-sections of fat men? Are those being sexist as well?

  19. #19 Zuska
    January 26, 2010

    Dude, you will please address and/or refer to me as Zuska or be banned from my blog, as amusing as you are.

  20. #20 Aqua of the Questioners
    January 26, 2010

    I just love (and by that I mean hate) the way this comment thread is so well-described by the post title.

  21. #21 SKM
    January 26, 2010

    Now Zuska, isn’t Hawkins better qualified to decide what your name is? After all, he is the Man of the thread!

  22. #23 Paulino
    January 27, 2010

    @RevMatt#14, I tried to mansplain* that in the previous thread, and broaden the notion to “rule-crapping”. “Rule-crapping” happens intrasexually and generally is dominance related.

    *-unjustly as I didn’t assume the concept was wrong

    Now, I also witnessed and was victimized by, what I now perceive as “womansplaning”, in circumstances that involved phraseology like “men are too simple to grasp it”, or “it’s a girl’s thing” and variations there of.

    Before accusing me of being a sexist bastard, please consider the following options:
    a)men are indeed too simple to grasp the intricacies of womanhood;
    b)it was just me projecting my sexist prejudices, while feeling left out;
    c)rule-crapping is a general social phenomenon with multiple applications and specifics;
    d)dude, shut your mansplaining hole already!!!

  23. #24 Michael Hawkins
    January 27, 2010

    I hadn’t realized scienceblogs promoted such unfruitful junk, so one can realize my dismay when I walked into this hornet’s nest. That said, now that I’ve got CPP freaking out and falling apart at the seems (oh, false bravado, what a fickle friend you can be), I guess I’m fairly satisfied.

    Oh, and since I’m just a caveman man and can’t follow clear directions: Toodles, Suzanne Franks.

  24. #25 Luna_the_cat
    January 27, 2010

    Or, in other words: declare victory! Proclaim that the people who keep beating you down are collapsed in disarray! and then scuttle away homewards, never to be seen again.

    Yeah, ‘cuz that always works and patently isn’t transparent as a retreat in the face of unrelenting exasperation with you.

  25. #26 Comrade PhysioProf
    January 27, 2010

    That sad thing is that these pathetic loser fanbois that hang around PZ Myers’s and Greg Laden’s blogs have such feelings of pulsating cock-throbbing d00dly manliness as they root and cheer for their heroes to SMASH CREATIONISTS AND FIGHT FOR RATIONALITY AND SKEPTICISM, when they are really just ineffectual little boys still trapped in a world of adolescent fantasy.

  26. #27 Vicki
    January 27, 2010

    Luna–well put. “Declare victory and go home” worked so well for the U.S. government in the early 1970s, after all. (I’ll bet Hawkins would be flattered if I compared him to Henry Kissinger or Richard Nixon.)

  27. #28 Rev Matt
    January 27, 2010

    @Paulino: the important thing is you have a sense of humor about it. And I love the label ‘rule-crapping’. I expect to use that at work on a near daily basis. We already have a term for people who stop at a cube to monologue at the cube dweller with no concern for if the recipient is interested or cares: word bombers.

    And yes, the word bombers are all men. But this is an IT shop, so the vast majority of their victims are as well. And they’re not so much mansplaining as they are pontificating at great length about something they just read half a paragraph about on the internet. Closely related, but not identical. Mansplaining and word bombing. That would be an awesome album title.

  28. #29 Endor
    January 27, 2010

    unlurk

    “That said, now that I’ve got CPP freaking out and falling apart at the seems (oh, false bravado, what a fickle friend you can be), I guess I’m fairly satisfied.”

    Translation: I’m tired of getting my ass handed to me in ways I can’t even begin to comprehend. Therefore, I’m going home to where my Manly Meat Stick of Superior Intelligence ™ will be properly worshiped.

    /relurk

  29. #30 SKM
    January 27, 2010

    A note about “rule-crapping”: I love this expression and am going to use it. However, it is no replacement for “mansplaining”. I understand the urge to go gender-neutral, Paulino, but that would erase the very real effects of male privilege on communication. As I said in the other thread, women can be know-it-alls and rule-crappers, but society does not back them up in their assumed superiority. Men often get positive reinforcement for info-dumping, while women often get negative feedback (notice I say “often”, not always). As a result, a man can often just state an opinion and expect it to be taken with equal or better weight than a woman’s reasoned argument.

    Oh, one more thing: about the “womansplaining” stuff referring to men being too dumb to XYZ: those folks are anti-feminists, regardless of gender. Lots of folks love to talk about how feminists hate men, but time and again we see that it’s the mainstream status-quoers who think so little of men!

  30. #31 Shinobi
    January 27, 2010

    Can I please mansplain to you all how hilarious these threads are? I know you are not aware of their total hilarity, but I, being objective and unattached to them am totally aware of the fact that I am giggling like a schoolgirl in my cube.

  31. #32 JMS
    January 27, 2010

    Oh, my heavens, I will never stop laughing at Michael Hawkins. He took his balls and went home! I GUESS THAT SHOWS YOU, ZUSKA! WHAT WILL YOU DO WITHOUT HIS AMAZING COMMENTARY?

  32. #33 FrauTech
    January 27, 2010

    Thanks CPP for being both rational and hilarious all at once, I had to disguise my laughter as a coughing fit several times here in CubeLand.

  33. #34 Don
    January 27, 2010

    Ohhhh Zuzka…you have done it again! You are amazing. Thanks for the laughs!

  34. #35 Carlie
    January 27, 2010

    I’m with Shinobi – I can’t stop laughing. Now I’m just waiting for someone to come along to mansplain how my sense of humor is wrong in thinking that watching a mansplainer mansplain why discussing mansplaining is wrong is funny.

  35. #36 endor
    January 27, 2010

    Carlie – all we need are a few of the “I know Sexism! I know cuz I’m a MAN!” commenters from Pharyngula. You know who I’m talking about. The ones who claim they KNOW sexism exists, yet whenever the topic comes up, it’s all bitchez is crazy and whiny!

    I’m sure they could mansplain to us silly overreacting girls why laughing at mansplainers mansplaining is sexist (against men) and that mansplaining is the product of evo psych and therefore totally unavoidable! so stop being so sensitive!

  36. #37 SKM
    January 27, 2010

    all we need are a few of the “I know Sexism! I know cuz I’m a MAN!” commenters from Pharyngula. You know who I’m talking about.

    Ah yes, they are the ones who can’t possibly ever have a sexist thought or impulse, because they are totally nice to their wives!

  37. #38 Endor
    January 27, 2010

    “they are the ones who can’t possibly ever have a sexist thought or impulse, because they are totally nice to their wives!”

    Bingo. And the ones who KNOW example x isn’t really sexist because his female relatives/friends/colleagues don’t think so!

    And the one who is actually female yet immediately responds to every. single. instance of sexism with snide remarks and silencing tactics, while she desperately tap dances for male approval.

  38. #39 Carlie
    January 27, 2010

    I might start to throw that in at Pharyngula and see what happens: “Thank you for the mansplanation.”

  39. #40 Sweet Machine
    January 27, 2010

    Oh, and since I’m just a caveman man and can’t follow clear directions

    Woo, SNAP! What a card! Cavemen! No modern man could possibly ignore a woman’s directions! Oh, you men. You get us every time.

  40. #41 ginger
    January 28, 2010

    So is this the thread for discussing mansplanation, then? Because I admit it – I can’t tell the difference between mansplainers and condescending, sexist assholes. (Let’s face it: you might be a condescending, sexist asshole if you find yourself explaining repeatedly and at length to a variety of women that you’re not a condescending, sexist asshole.)

  41. #42 Endor
    January 28, 2010

    “I might start to throw that in at Pharyngula and see what happens: “Thank you for the mansplanation.””

    LOL. Oh yeah. You know you’ll have my support.

  42. #43 nuspirit
    January 28, 2010

    Oh wow. A gambit where the opponent instantly loses by responding at all. Sheer genius.

    Apologies in advance. For you know, the mansplaining. And existing.

  43. #44 AH
    January 28, 2010

    Asserting dominance (to impress the ladiez) by intellectually belittling other men is a long hallowed practice amongst men.

    Have you never seen a women cut someone else down to establish dominance?

  44. #45 Endor
    January 28, 2010

    WOW. It amazes me how men immediately turn in to whiny, pouting crybabies the moment women start talking about sexism.

    “Apologies in advance. For you know, the mansplaining. And existing.”

    Someone needs a nappy change. Yeah, nevermind that it’s been said 8,000 times that this isn’t about all men, we’re just Cra-zaaaay man-haters out to hurt your poor precious fee-fees.

    Crazy bitchez talking about their experiences are just out to hurt YOU and YOUR PERSONALLY. Yep, it’s all about you. You, you, you.

  45. #46 sloth
    January 28, 2010

    So is this the thread for discussing mansplanation, then?

    Appears to be. This is where I got directed to talk about it.

    Because I admit it – I can’t tell the difference between mansplainers and condescending, sexist assholes.

    Pretty much. Course, I can’t tell the difference between that and pretty much any other form of unsolicited and unnecessary advice.

  46. #47 Norvegica
    January 28, 2010

    @46 Sloth

    Because mansplainers make it clear from all get out that they need to drop their nuggets of festering turd wisdom on you because you are an ignorant little lady who can’t do anything right and can’t possibly know anything about the subject at hand, even though you majored/work in/work with/otherwise KNOW the subject in the first place.

    Especially galling when some man explains to you how you are dealing with menstrual cramps incorrectly. When he isn’t even a gynocologist. How about somebody kick him in the balls and have some random woman standing over him while he’s in agony telling him to suck it up, it can’t be that bad? That’s a fraction of the ridiculousness women have to endure when being mansplained to all the time.

  47. #48 nuspirit
    January 28, 2010

    Someone needs a nappy change. Yeah, nevermind that it’s been said 8,000 times that this isn’t about all men, we’re just Cra-zaaaay man-haters out to hurt your poor precious fee-fees.

    I’d reply but that would just be more mansplainin’. Damn, I did it again. I keep forgetting it’s heads you win, tails I lose. Double drat.

  48. #49 Endor
    January 28, 2010

    “I’d reply but that would just be more mansplainin’. Damn, I did it again. I keep forgetting it’s heads you win, tails I lose. Double drat.”

    Sure, I’ll repeat myself, Captain Whinypants! “Yeah, nevermind that it’s been said 8,000 times that this isn’t about all men, we’re just Cra-zaaaay man-haters out to hurt your poor precious fee-fees.”

    Reading is fundamental, sweetiekins! Try it sometime! You know, after you get bored with you “pay attention to me!” temper tantrums.

  49. #50 sloth
    January 28, 2010

    Because mansplainers make it clear from all get out that they need to drop their nuggets of festering turd wisdom on you because you are an ignorant little lady who can’t do anything right and can’t possibly know anything about the subject at hand, even though you majored/work in/work with/otherwise KNOW the subject in the first place.

    Heh. I’m a vendor in the Women’s Health field, so I get to deal with docsplaining all the time.

  50. #51 DuckFeet
    January 28, 2010

    Sloth:

    People can be pedantic blabbering fools to each other and not be sexist in particular, yes.

    However, mansplaining was specifically defined as needless explanations made due to the idea that womenz just ain’t that bright. I will give some examples:

    Pedantic blabbering: When my friend turns to me and starts lecturing me on why the economy is broken, which I already understand. But the friend didn’t do it because I’m a woman, but because they like the sound of their own voice.

    Mansplaining: Well, you could go to the other thread and find dozens of examples. But here’s one. When you tell a woman she’s being “emotional” and needs to “calm down and be rational” about something during a debate, even though the woman is just as calm an rational as everyone else around who happen to be male.

  51. #52 DuckFeet
    January 28, 2010

    I’d reply but that would just be more mansplainin’. Damn, I did it again. I keep forgetting it’s heads you win, tails I lose. Double drat.

    “I would have posted a brilliant point that completely negates your arguments, but instead I think I’ll set up a ridiculous straw(wo)man! Hurray!”

  52. #53 sloth
    January 28, 2010

    Mansplaining: Well, you could go to the other thread and find dozens of examples. But here’s one. When you tell a woman she’s being “emotional” and needs to “calm down and be rational” about something during a debate, even though the woman is just as calm an rational as everyone else around who happen to be male.

    Could you calm down and be rational? ;)

    However, mansplaining was specifically defined as needless explanations made due to the idea that womenz just ain’t that bright.

    Seriously, I get what you’re saying. And I’ve seen that happen. I just like that we now have a couple-thousand new descriptions of pedantry to play with now – like mansplaining, docsplaining, femsplaining, bossplaining, punditsplaining, etc. And, really, when I say seriously, I mean seriously – I love adding new specialized words to our language :)

  53. #54 DuckFeet
    January 28, 2010

    Well, if you’re not being sarcastic Sloth, I too agree that coming up with new vocabulary is creative and fun!

    But one of the points about mansplaining that has been made, is that it’s backed up by social mechanisms that tacitly endorse it (otherwise known as sexism, the patriarchy, etc.) and while we’re definitely becoming (albeit slowly) more and more egalitarian, it still exists. Thus the frustration! While pundits and doctors can be frustratingly pedantic, pundits and doctors have not had control over society for thousands of years, and aren’t given special privileges (ignoring socioeconomic privs.). Perhaps I’m wrong, but this I think is the point of contingency.

  54. #55 nuspirit
    January 28, 2010

    after you get bored with you “pay attention to me!” temper tantrums.

    Oh wow, another “you lose just by replying/posting in the first place” gambit. I just keep ducking into the punch, don’t I. I realize now that I’m like a creationist who stumbled onto Pharyngula. Time for Brave Sir Robin to run away!

  55. #56 Endor
    January 28, 2010

    “Oh wow, another “you lose just by replying/posting in the first place” gambit. I just keep ducking into the punch, don’t I. I realize now that I’m like a creationist who stumbled onto Pharyngula. Time for Brave Sir Robin to run away!”

    Well, you outed yourself as a coward in your first comment. Big brave boys deal with the actual topic. Instead of the carefully constructed strawmen designed to protect them from any critical thought whatsoever.

    But, no, it’s not about responding *at all*. It’s about responding in the most douchey manner possible, while pouting. Which you did. Twice.

    Feel free to run. We’ll forget all about you and your pathetically transparent inability to think in seconds.

  56. #57 DuckFeet
    January 28, 2010

    Hey nuspirit, check this out.

    POST!

    Did I loose?

  57. #58 sloth
    January 28, 2010

    But one of the points about mansplaining that has been made, is that it’s backed up by social mechanisms that tacitly endorse it (otherwise known as sexism, the patriarchy, etc.)

    Mmkay. I’m not sure that meshes with my typical experience, but it certainly seems common enough in many other places and times.

    And, of course, my experience may be fairly atypical – like I said, I work in Women’s Health, so the vast majority of my clients and coworkers are women, from the docs to the techs to the managers to the office staff to the patients to the other vendors. There are fairly few men in the field, a number that rapidly approaches zero if you exclude IT geeks. That may well be a power-dynamic not experienced by most.

  58. #59 SKM
    January 28, 2010

    While pundits and doctors can be frustratingly pedantic, pundits and doctors have not had control over society for thousands of years, and aren’t given special privileges (ignoring socioeconomic privs.). Perhaps I’m wrong, but this I think is the point of contingency.

    I’m with DuckFeet here, Sloth–you speak as though “mansplaining” and “femsplaining” were phenomena on equal social footing–they aren’t. You are ignoring institutionalized privileges. They exist. A woman can be a know-it-all, but society will not support her in her presumption and discourage others from showing her up. Women, however, are raised to avoid embarrassing or showing up a boy or man, even if that means feigning ignorance. You propose an equivalence that does not yet exist.

    To paraphrase Carl Sagan: better to see the world as it really is than to live in an imaginary reality, no matter how comforting.

  59. #60 sloth
    January 28, 2010

    I’m with DuckFeet here, Sloth–you speak as though “mansplaining” and “femsplaining” were phenomena on equal social footing–they aren’t. You are ignoring institutionalized privileges. They exist. A woman can be a know-it-all, but society will not support her in her presumption and discourage others from showing her up. Women, however, are raised to avoid embarrassing or showing up a boy or man, even if that means feigning ignorance. You propose an equivalence that does not yet exist.

    Again, I’m open to your interpretation – it just doesn’t seem to accord well with *my* reality. I fully grant that it may accord quite well with *your* reality, and that a moment’s reflection leads me to realize that I have seen that reality – it’s just not where I normally live.

    I in no way intend to deny your reality (or tell you to be rational, or get your nappy changed, or change your statement to something it isn’t). I just have to say that’s not the world I live in, and it’s not a world I would want to live in.

    Oh, and that I’m *totally* going to be unable to stop myself from using the word “docsplaining” in the future :)

  60. #61 Endor
    January 28, 2010

    “I in no way intend to deny your reality”

    And yet, here’s sloth’s first post

    “You might be deluded if…

    You feel the need to write a blog post about how sexist it is for anyone to question your analysis, even (especially?) when it’s obvious that they neither know nor care what your gender is.”

    Liar, liar pants on fire!

  61. #62 Vicki
    January 28, 2010

    Sloth–

    Unfortunately, we can’t just choose to live in the reality without mansplaining, any more than we can just choose to leave the reality that contains global warming, infectious diseases, or any number of other problems. We can identify the problems, and work to fix them, and warn each other about them, or we can ignore them, or try to. But that you don’t see mansplaining very often doesn’t mean it’s not there, any more than I can avoid influenza by saying that nobody around me right now is sick.

  62. #63 Endor
    January 28, 2010

    “or tell you to be rational, or get your nappy changed, or change your statement to something it isn’t)”

    Active translator: I just called you deluded (and therefore not rational) and denied yours and every other women’s experience on the thread until i couldn’t anymore and then I decided to play nice just long enough to lie and accuse you of bad faith. Cuz simply admitting to being completely wrong is impossible! I’m right – you crazy bitchez just haven’t seen it yet! Cuz you’re so busy being crazy!

    (man, this is fun).

  63. #64 sloth
    January 28, 2010

    Unfortunately, we can’t just choose to live in the reality without mansplaining, any more than we can just choose to leave the reality that contains global warming, infectious diseases, or any number of other problems. We can identify the problems, and work to fix them, and warn each other about them, or we can ignore them, or try to. But that you don’t see mansplaining very often doesn’t mean it’s not there, any more than I can avoid influenza by saying that nobody around me right now is sick.

    Fair enough.

  64. #65 sloth
    January 28, 2010

    So…
    Do we have a complete and functional definition of mansplaining now?

  65. #66 ginger
    January 28, 2010

    Yeah, I think we do: it’s the use of male privilege to justify condescending and unnecessary explanation to an equally or more knowledgeable female.

  66. #67 SKM
    January 28, 2010

    So…
    Do we have a complete and functional definition of mansplaining now?

    We already did.

    ginger puts it well: “it’s the use of male privilege to justify condescending and unnecessary explanation to an equally or more knowledgeable female.”

    As Zuska, Karen Healy, and Rebecca Solnit have established.

  67. #68 JWW
    January 28, 2010

    How is this drivel in a science blog? Is Zuska a secretary for some guys who do research?

    Now, now, no need to be rude. This is clearly a form of taxonomy, where we are classifying a form of speech. Specifically:

    “the use of male privilege to justify condescending and unnecessary explanation to an equally or more knowledgeable female.”

    Note 1: This applies even when the speaker has no clue that the recipient is female, and indeed when the genders of all participants are completely indeterminate.

    Note 2: There is apparently some sort of “male privilege” concept which holds between two anonymous bloggers of no discernible gender.

    Note 3: Some feel that this phenomenon can occur between men, though others disagree. Both sides agree that the concept that is inherently about minz talking down to wimminz because they are wimminz – even when the recipients are minz or presumed to be minz. It’s unclear whether the reverse holds true, ie, whether a valid charge of mansplaining can be upheld when the anonymous speaker is actually and/or presumed to be a wimminz – more testing in this area may be required.

    Note 4: Questioning why anyone feels the need to inject sexism as an explanation into a situation completely devoid of gender roles or identity is sexist, and a form of mansplaining.

    Note 5: On balance, mansplaining seems to be more of a convenient label which describes the *response* to dialog rather than the dialog itself. Overall, it seems to be a specific solution of the “why can’t [subgroup] just shut up and realize how right I am all of the time?” for cases where [subgroup] == men and [speaker] = female. Of course, many such solutions exist, including the converse for [subgroup] == women, [subgroup] == foreigners, [subgroup] == [members of hated political party], etc.

    Recommend further testing to validate this hypothesis.

  68. #69 ginger
    January 28, 2010

    Waitasecond, JWW – when were any of the examples given in the Mansplaining bitch-session part of “discussions between two anonymous bloggers of no discernible gender”? Are you talking about the back-and-forth between Michael Hawkins and Zuska? Because they’re both pretty evidently non-anonymous, gendered bloggers. Or are you talking about the incomprehensible Jon-NotJon thing? If so, fine, I don’t understand how it’s mansplaining, because I can’t even figure out what the hell happened.

    The reason this “drivel (is) in a science blog” (and just where did that quotation come from, anyway?) is that frustrated female scientists need to talk about the shit that bugs them, and when what bugs them is male privilege, well, there we go. And inevitably, because this isn’t a closed environment, a bunch of guys will show up looking for reassurance they’re nicer than the irritating men, or looking to stir the already irritated female scientists up some, or just looking to give the sisters some support. As far as I’m concerned, the last group can keep up the good work and the other two groups can just fuck off.

    I’m definitely not right all the time (see: scientist; see also: scientific method, hypothesis testing, uncertainty, error) and I don’t want other people with whom I disagree to shut up, as a rule. However, people who are condescending and rude, especially people who have power conferred on them societally because of their genitalia, should just shut the hell up once in a while and let other people talk, if only because it makes them look smarter.

  69. #70 JWW
    January 29, 2010

    Waitasecond, JWW – when were any of the examples given in the Mansplaining bitch-session part of “discussions between two anonymous bloggers of no discernible gender”?

    All of them. Consider that number 3 (of 4) of Zuska’s examples of mansplaining was “you might be a mansplainer if you explain that you thought you were talking to a man.”

    Actually, Hawkins’ statement was poorly worded – he should not have said “I assumed you were a man,” what he should have said was “I assumed you were a blogger and your gender was completely irrelevant to the discussion.” That would be more accurate, because to this point, those of us who have not met Zuska and/or Hawkins in person *still* do not know their genders, and can only treat the one with the default English position of using male pronouns and the other with female pronouns because he/she/it has expressed a preference for that mode of address. However, it’s worth noting that Zuska had expressed *no such preference* through the majority of her/his/its conversation with Hawkins, and thus he/she/it had no reason to treat Zuska with any particular gender-identity.

    Are you talking about the back-and-forth between Michael Hawkins and Zuska? Because they’re both pretty evidently non-anonymous, gendered bloggers.

    Perhaps you should reread the exchange. It’s clear that Hawkins never filed Zuska into the “female” category until somebody complained that Hawkins was “mansplaining.” Up until that point, Hawkins was operating in a completely gender-free mode, so it’s rather silly to accuse Hawkins of being sexist in this exchange. Indeed, downright unscientific.

    On that note, it’s interesting that the one person who actually addressed the topic in a scientific manner (csrster) was completely ignored by the rest of the posters.

    The reason this “drivel (is) in a science blog” (and just where did that quotation come from, anyway?)

    From the primary article of which this is a spinoff – it appears to be an effort by an outside agitator to out-troll Endor. I decided to respect the blogger’s request to sequester discussion about manpsplaining rather than mockery of mansplainers to this thread instead of the main one. Though, really, I guess I am mocking mansplainers after all.

    is that frustrated female scientists need to talk about the shit that bugs them, and when what bugs them is male privilege

    You seem to be missing a point here: There is no gender online except that which you make. Nobody knows if you’re male, female, androgynous, canine, andromedan, etc, unless you make an issue of it. And, for the most part, NOBODY CARES.

    The one and only “privilege relationship” here is that between the blogger and the posters on the blog.

  70. #71 Endor
    January 29, 2010

    “There is no gender online except that which you make. Nobody knows if you’re male, female, androgynous, canine, andromedan, etc, unless you make an issue of it. And, for the most part, NOBODY CARES.”

    Well, now, THIS is a whole new level of crazy clueless. No one cares, huh. Tell that the countless women who get rape, torture and death threats for merely being female and voicing an opinion on the web.

    Sexism does not disappear if we ignore it. Shining a bright light on such worthless stupidity certain helps the worthlessly stupid show their true colors.

    And, of course, *I’m* a troll. I’m a silly chick who doesn’t allow mansplainers to mansplain without mocking them. Obviously, if I just sit like a pretty docile flower and let them talk down to every women, ignore every women and lie, then I’d totes be not a troll! Weeeeeee!

  71. #72 Endor
    January 29, 2010

    “And inevitably, because this isn’t a closed environment, a bunch of guys will show up looking for reassurance they’re nicer than the irritating men, or looking to stir the already irritated female scientists up some, or just looking to give the sisters some support.”

    Silly ginger, thinking silly chicks get to talk about stuff that affects them without the permission of d00ds, without the approval of d00ds, and without the agreement of d00ds!

    Ooops – that makes a troll too doesn’t it. Damn this ladybrain and it’s opinions, making me all trollish!

  72. #73 Comrade PhysioProf
    January 29, 2010

    Perhaps you should reread the exchange. It’s clear that Hawkins never filed Zuska into the “female” category until somebody complained that Hawkins was “mansplaining.” Up until that point, Hawkins was operating in a completely gender-free mode, so it’s rather silly to accuse Hawkins of being sexist in this exchange. Indeed, downright unscientific.

    On that note, it’s interesting that the one person who actually addressed the topic in a scientific manner (csrster) was completely ignored by the rest of the posters.

    Jeeezus motherfucking keerist, it’s another motherfucking high-school debate-team CHAMPEEEEEEEEEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You’d think the total cockslapping Hawd00dche received would have given these douchebags pause for thought.

  73. #74 Ruth
    January 29, 2010

    “There is no gender online except that which you make.”

    Actually, I think you’re the one who is missing the point. In practice, online, you will be assumed to be male unless you make it explicit that you are female. Case in point, Hawkins assumed that Zuska was male, even though the name ‘Suzanne’ appears in her brief bio, because he hadn’t bothered to read it.

    That is hardly the same as ‘no gender’.

  74. #75 Vicki
    January 29, 2010

    The other thing JWW is missing, or choosing to ignore, is that we do not live our entire lives online. Zie may actually be unaware of gender online, but if zie works in a lab, JWW is seeing people as women and men, not as ungendered abstractions sending packets via TCP/IP. Actual women have to deal with sexism in the rest of our lives, even if we manage to avoid it online. (And if we do, it’s often by “passing” as male, either deliberately or because some men assume everyone they run into online is male.)

    Yes, women can censor what we talk about to make men happy, to avoid upsetting men who don’t like having their privilege pointed out. But why should we?

    That would mean avoiding any topic via which our gender might become apparent. It would mean not calling out sexism in any way that might lead someone to think “hey, she’s a woman!” Convenient for the men who would like to pretend that women have nothing to contribute, or aren’t in their part of the world, but it doesn’t benefit women, or decent, anti-sexist men.

  75. #76 SKM
    January 29, 2010

    Oh but Ruth, men have no gender, just as white people have no race or ethnicity! Heterosexual white well-off male is the default norm–everyone else is a special interest identity group. Glad I could clear that up. /snark

  76. #77 Carlie
    January 29, 2010

    And SKM, not only do men not have gender, they don’t see gender. Why, they talk the same to everybody! They’re sure they do.

  77. #78 JMS
    January 29, 2010

    Nobody knows if you’re male, female, androgynous, canine, andromedan, etc, unless you make an issue of it.

    HA HA HA HA HA HA

    Yeah, using your name and photograph is “making an issue” of your gender.

    Oh, Zuska, how dare you go around being all FEMALE at people, what with your female name and female pronouns and photograph of your female self?!?! The nerve of you! You should just be pretending to be a middle-class white heterosexual cis man, just like all the illustrations of scientists we had in our elementary-school readers!

    IF YOU AIN’T PROFESSOR HONEYDEW, YOU AIN’T A REAL SCIENTIST, YO!

  78. #79 Carlie
    January 29, 2010

    Nobody knows if you’re male, female, androgynous, canine, andromedan, etc, unless you make an issue of it.

    I’ve read of several experiments where people switch between avatars with feminine or masculine handles and see how differently they’re treated in various online environments. I saw this myself with my children on a child-specific site: one son had a black avatar with a sporty name (say “baseball93″), the other had a yellow avatar with a more cutesy name (say “shinystar”). Even with such minor potential gender cues, the yellow one was talked to about 5 times more often than the black one, and often asked to be friends and go shopping and the like. So really, even without “making an issue of it”, people assign you a gender that they think fits.

  79. #80 Cara
    January 30, 2010

    Or, in other words: declare victory! Proclaim that the people who keep beating you down are collapsed in disarray! and then scuttle away homewards, never to be seen again.

    I read this in the voice of Butters when he’s being Commander Chaos. Unfortunately, it didn’t make Commander Debate Team or Sidekick Sloth more endearing to me.

  80. #81 thebewilderness
    January 31, 2010

    This was absolutely splendid. Thanks.

  81. #82 Ole M.
    February 2, 2010

    While reading these comments, I was thinking of some kind of big argument to make, but it’s obvious that it wouldn’t make any difference.

    Michael Hawkins tried to maintain a proper tone and make some valid arguments, but he was just ridiculed and accused of “mansplaining”, often in very sarcastic ways.

    When nuspirit tried to counter your arguments in the same sarcastic tone, he was mocked as well. Like some have said before me, there really is no possible way for men who disagree with you to avoid being ridiculed.

    At first, I actually thought you might have a point about “mansplaining”, but gradually, all those mocking comments have made me change my mind. Now it just seems to me that many of you are using this thread to vent a general hatred towards mankind. Feminism does have a lot of good sides, but the way you act makes it look bad as a whole, which I think is a shame.

    This post will probably be ridiculed as well, or I will be accused of “mansplaining”. I don’t really care, since I won’t be returning to this blog.

  82. #83 Endor
    February 2, 2010

    “Like some have said before me, there really is no possible way for men who disagree with you to avoid being ridiculed.”

    There is no way to mansplain away mansplaining, that’s true. Since neither Hawkins nor nuspirit ceased with the mansplaining, they were mocked.

    “At first, I actually thought you might have a point about “mansplaining”, but gradually, all those mocking comments have made me change my mind.”

    Thank you for admitting that you are so completely dishonest that you are willing to ignore the 300+ posts on the other thread detailing examples of mansplaining in favor of your hurt fee fees.

    Run away now, poor little hurt fee fees boy.

  83. #84 nicole
    February 2, 2010

    I have to say, the men who post here that gender is irrelevant and that no one cares anyway are a lot like my Brahman Caste Indian friends who tell me that they don’t care about the class… or wealthy folks who say that money isn’t important to them. You cannot objectively say you don’t have any privilege if you’ve never lived without the privileges you have.

  84. #85 Endor
    February 2, 2010

    “You cannot objectively say you don’t have any privilege if you’ve never lived without the privileges you have.”

    Bingo. it’s like white people who say “I’m color blind. I don’t see race”. Weeeelllll, aren’t you just a special snowflake!

    That’s what these boys are, esp the “men can’t say anything in response” boys. What they’re really saying is “I don’t know how to talk to women without being a condescending sexist douche! be nice to me anyways!”

  85. #86 thebewilderness
    February 2, 2010

    Ole, your assertion that an argument is valid does not imbue it with validity. Further, there is no proper tone that will magically change mansplainin’ into not mansplainin.

  86. #87 JAM
    February 2, 2010

    This question is for Zuska and anyone else that may have some insight:

    Is it possible that some women can also be Mansplainers to the women and men around them?

    And, isn’t it sexist to say things like, “I am not going to listen to anything you say or even try to have a constructive conversation with you, because you are a white privileged male”?

  87. #88 JAM
    February 2, 2010

    This question is for Zuska and anyone else that may have some insight:

    Is it possible that some women can also be Mansplainers to the women and men around them?

    And, isn’t it sexist to say things like, “I am not going to listen to anything you say or even try to have a constructive conversation with you, because you are a white privileged male”?

  88. #89 Cara
    February 3, 2010

    This question is for Zuska and anyone else that may have some insight:

    Is it possible that some women can also be Mansplainers to the women and men around them?

    No.

    And, isn’t it sexist to say things like, “I am not going to listen to anything you say or even try to have a constructive conversation with you, because you are a white privileged male”?

    No. Avoiding conversations with certain men is a rational conservation of a woman’s time–specifically, those men who refuse to acknowledge that her lived experience is valid simply because she’s lived it.

  89. #90 Vicki
    February 3, 2010

    JAM–To add to what Cara is saying, when someone says that “I am not going to have a conversation with you because you are a white privileged male” she almost certainly is saying “because you are a white privileged male asshole who refuses to listen.” But hearing/acknowledging that undercuts the point.

    There is a difference between “I don’t get this, where can I find out more?” (in this case, reading the thread on “you may be a mansplainer” and thinking about the experiences women are describing would be a good place to start; in others, you might be pointed to a feminism 101 or racism 101 site); “I don’t get this, and I insist that you answer all my questions about it, rather than pointing me to a book or web site, because I want to hear your experience” (which is itself an act of privilege, demanding that you get it explained by this person, even though she can point you at plenty of good explanations that won’t use up lots of her time); and “This hasn’t happened to me, therefore it isn’t real or important.” That third is the one that is most likely to get “I am not going to have a discussion with you.” Because you have demonstrated that you cannot or will not have a discussion on the subject: you will hector or undercut, but not actually listen to the woman in question.

  90. #91 SKM
    February 3, 2010

    OK, Hector Undercutt is my new nickname for folks who use those particular silencing tactics. Thanks, Vicki!

  91. #92 JAM
    February 3, 2010

    After reading the entire threads, both the former and this one, it seems there is a fine line between generalizing an entire category of individuals skirting on prejudice and judging a specific individual on their character in person.

    Call me crazy, but I do not see the difference between the Mansplainer and the woman know-it-alls. They are one in the same besides their gender.

    Thanks to those that took the time out of their busy lives to respond to my question.

  92. #93 Cara
    February 3, 2010

    Call me crazy,

    Not crazy, just (willfully, I submit) not getting it.

    but I do not see the difference between the Mansplainer and the woman know-it-alls. They are one in the same besides their gender.

    Mansplainers MAKE THE GENDER THE DIFFERENCE. Women aren’t fabricating the condition, only reporting it (though the distinction is lost when talking to a mansplainer, since they believe a woman’s perceptions are automatically invalid).

    Thank you and goodnight.

  93. #94 Citizen Jane
    February 3, 2010

    JAM,

    You don’t see any difference between men who use their male privilege to their benefit and women who don’t enjoy that privilege?

  94. #95 JAM
    February 4, 2010

    Cara & Citizen Jane,

    Quite possibly I do not see the difference between The Mansplainer and the woman know-it-alls, because in my experience, they mansplain or act like know-it-alls to everyone equally. They are, in essence, both d-bags.

    When I have seen a man mansplain to a woman, I have seen the same man mansplan to the men around them as well.

    It is also quite possible that too many women look toward these men as if there is an underlying reason for their behavior that is directed at them specifically because of their gender. It is called reflection; “I know there is nothing wrong with me, so this guy must have deep rooted issues with sexism to explain his behavior.”

    Sometimes, a jerk is just a jerk. Not that I am saying that there are not some men out there that are intentionally treating women badly through expecting them not to understand what they already know. But, this idea that all men that Mansplain do it because of privilege, I believe, is a bit exaggerated.

    When you hear your dog barking out in the back yard, sure, it could be because someone is trying to break into your house. It also could be because of a cat running across the lawn, the wind, the moon, or the dog is just barking to bark. Who knows?!? But, to be dead set on one reasoning is wrong and harmful to both sides.

  95. #96 jc
    February 4, 2010

    *knock knock*
    who’s there?
    P-R-I-V-I-L-E-G-E
    privilege who?
    JAM
    JAM who?
    JAM who doesn’t know what PRIVILEGE is.

  96. #97 Citizen Jane
    February 4, 2010

    Why is it impossible for a feminist to point out a cultural phenomenon without someone picking apart every example, and claiming that since you can’t prove every single example the whole observation is invalid? Also, discrimination doesn’t exist systemically because there are some instances in which a woman gets passed over for a job for non-sexist reasons. Come on, it’s pretending to refute the point when all you are doing is tap dancing around the actual point. You cannot refute the observation of a flaw in the system by picking apart people’s examples of the result of that flaw.

    Since you seem to like analogies, here’s one:
    Feminist: There’s an epidemic of the bingalongaboozala virus. Symptoms include dizziness, coughing, and rash.
    JAM: There are some cases where people get dizzy, cough, or get a rash without being infected with the bingalongaboozala virus. Therefore, there is no epidemic of the bingalongaboozala virus.

    Also, it is a privilege you enjoy that when something like this happens, you don’t have to wonder and worry about whether it is happening because of your gender. I would be thrilled to have such a privilege. If I lived in a world where people weren’t constantly being sexist, I wouldn’t have to pick apart encounters to figure out if I’m getting treated a certain way because I have boobies. That would be fricking wonderful.

  97. #98 Endor
    February 4, 2010

    “Why is it impossible for a feminist to point out a cultural phenomenon without someone picking apart every example, and claiming that since you can’t prove every single example the whole observation is invalid?”

    Privilege. The bitchez are talking, therefore they’re nagging, whining and complaining – not talking about anything REAL and IMPORTANT, and so they need to be set right by d00ds and wanna-be d00ds who Know Better(tm)!

  98. #99 Cara
    February 4, 2010

    It is also quite possible that too many women look toward these men as if there is an underlying reason for their behavior that is directed at them specifically because of their gender. It is called reflection; “I know there is nothing wrong with me, so this guy must have deep rooted issues with sexism to explain his behavior.”

    Anyone have a spare card? Mine’s full.

  99. #100 JAM
    February 4, 2010

    jc, Citizen Jane, & Endor:

    I am not saying that privilege doesn’t exist.

    I am not saying that sexism doesn’t exist.

    I am not saying that mansplaining doesn’t exist.

    I have never claimed that “the whole observation is invalid”.

    What I am saying is this; there are many reasons for PEOPLE to act the way they do. There is no one set solution to fall back on like “privilege” as the end-all-be-all reason to explain people’s behavior.

    Brush the chips of the shoulders girls. I did, and it made a world of difference. If you live your life believing that everyone is “constantly being sexist”, then you are negating everything that the feminist movement stands for. Life is not easy. It takes hard work to make changes. Walking around slapping one reasoning onto every similar experience is short sighted, and it does more harm than good.

  100. #101 SKM
    February 4, 2010

    There is no one set solution to fall back on like “privilege” as the end-all-be-all reason to explain people’s behavior.

    Nobody here said there is. Who are you talking to?

    Brush the chips of the shoulders girls.

    That is dismissive and disrespectful.

    If you live your life believing that everyone is “constantly being sexist”,

    Again, who are you talking to? Nobody here said that.

    then you are negating everything that the feminist movement stands for. [...]and it does more harm than good.

    This reads as classic trolling. Become aware of that, in case you are not already. Telling feminists that they are doing it wrong is a real cliche of a silencing technique.

    Life is not easy. It takes hard work to make changes.

    Really, Sherlock?

    Again, who are you talking to here? Nobody here said life was easy, and we are working for change.

    It really sounds like you are talking to yourself here, because your remarks are unrelated to the actual post and thread.

    Consider reading Johnson’s The Gender Knot (and discussions here). HINT: this is not the thread to come back and explain why Johnson is wrong, or that his observations don’t apply here, etc. I don’t want to contribute to a derail.

  101. #102 Endor
    February 4, 2010

    “Brush the chips of the shoulders girls. I did, and it made a world of difference. ”

    So, you’ve decided being condescending, sexist and disrespectful was going to make us listen to you? Good choice, really.

    “If you live your life believing that everyone is “constantly being sexist”, then you are negating everything that the feminist movement stands for. Life is not easy. It takes hard work to make changes. Walking around slapping one reasoning onto every similar experience is short sighted, and it does more harm than good.”

    LOL. Douchebag gets funnier and funnier. Let’s activate the translator: No, I didn’t absorb anything any woman posted. I’m just going to pretend you all said things you didn’t to justify my not listening and acting like a jerk.

  102. #103 JAM
    February 4, 2010

    SKM,

    There is no one set solution to fall back on like “privilege” as the end-all-be-all reason to explain people’s behavior.

    Nobody here said there is. Who are you talking to? (Oh common now, scroll upward and look at how many times people talked about privilege as if it was the underlying reason for mansplaining.)

    Brush the chips of the shoulders girls.

    That is dismissive and disrespectful. (No, that was a suggestion on how to make things better for a number of you including myself.)

    If you live your life believing that everyone is “constantly being sexist”,

    Again, who are you talking to? Nobody here said that. (Read #97 – seems to me that you are the one being dismissive of my observation.)

    then you are negating everything that the feminist movement stands for. [...]and it does more harm than good.

    This reads as classic trolling. Become aware of that, in case you are not already. Telling feminists that they are doing it wrong is a real cliche of a silencing technique. (No, it is not a silencing technique. It is a suggestion that looking at some of the good, as well as the bad, strengthens the position of the fight.)

  103. #104 JAM
    February 4, 2010

    Don’t even bother tearing this comment apart as I am simply restating it from many other sources across such academics as psychology, ethics, and group management practices:

    The problem that occurs all too often with many business and political organizations, as well as civil rights groups, gay rights groups, and the feminist movement, among others, is that they fall prey to group-think, which leads to the inability to incorporate new ideas from outside that group. This ultimately undermines their efforts as they become dismissive and trapped into one mode of thinking.

  104. #105 Ariel
    February 5, 2010

    I’ve been lurking this thread for a while…mainly for laughs as Mansplainers get their asses handed to them. However, if Endor doesn’t mind, I’d like to try a translation.

    Ahem.

    “The problem that occurs all too often with many business and political organizations, as well as civil rights groups, gay rights groups, and the feminist movement, among others, is that they fall prey to group-think, which leads to the inability to incorporate new ideas from outside that group.”

    Translation: You need to listen to the privileged people for no other reason than because their view is more significant than your everyday life, philosophy, and logic.

    Translation of the translation: You don’t let me into your club just because I want to tell you why you’re wrong.

    Note: that was harder than I imagined, but still fun.

  105. #106 Cara
    February 5, 2010

    Don’t even bother tearing this comment apart

    Pfft.

    as I am simply restating it from many other sources across such academics as psychology, ethics, and group management practices:

    The problem that occurs all too often with many business and political organizations, as well as civil rights groups, gay rights groups, and the feminist movement, among others, is that they fall prey to group-think, which leads to the inability to incorporate new ideas from outside that group. This ultimately undermines their efforts as they become dismissive and trapped into one mode of thinking.

    Shorter JAM: Women are so stupid they won’t notice I’m mansplaining even as I mansplain, and EVERYONE AGREES WITH ME SO SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP.

  106. #107 Cara
    February 5, 2010

    Brush the chips of the shoulders girls.

    Is this in code or something?

  107. #108 Vicki
    February 5, 2010

    Or: “The problem with groups I disagree with is that they are human, and can make the same mistakes as the groups I’m part of. But it’s okay for me not to listen to you, because I already know everything.”

  108. #109 SKM
    February 5, 2010

    (Read #97 – seems to me that you are the one being dismissive of my observation.)

    JAM, I didn’t write comment #97, nor indeed any of the surrounding comments. If I said that everyone is “constantly being sexist”, you’re going to have to quote that comment for us.

    Again, nobody here said that. Certainly not Citizen Jane in comment #97.

  109. #110 Endor
    February 8, 2010

    “However, if Endor doesn’t mind, I’d like to try a translation. ”

    I do not mind! I fully encourage all women to translate dipshit misogynists like JAM at every opportunity. JAM will learn nothing, of course, but it’s amusing to mock people like JAM. Think of your audience – there are lurkers who might not be as seasoned in dealing with dipshit misogynists like JAM and who might not know how to counter them. Do it for them.

  110. #111 JKL
    February 19, 2010

    75% of you are incredibly immature. Quit bitching and get a life.

  111. #112 Endor
    February 22, 2010

    JKL -call em crazy, but whining that everyone else is whiny on a thread that died two weeks ago is the epitome of needing a life.

  112. #113 Cara
    February 25, 2010

    You’re checking for troll puke too, Endor? ;)

    It’s like dusting–you wonder if it needs DOING AGAIN, and it always does.

  113. #114 veganrampage
    March 21, 2010

    May I (I may) just add that living at large in the great unwashed patriarchy is tantamount to living in an insane asylum where everyone else is psychotic, yet screaming at you all day and all night how crazy you are. The P invalidates all your experiences, from the largest to the smallest, until you begin to doubt yourself.

    Then when I come upon sites like this one, or “I Blame the Patriarchy”, I read thoughts and feelings aligned with my own.

    I cannot express what a relief it is read a lifetime of inner thoughts expressed so well and and for once, to be a member of the majority instead of the only member of a club that society seeks to invalidate, crush and kill at every turn.

    It may not be much but it is all some of have. Thanks to the founder, and to the great lay-dee “commentators” with their large lobed lay-dee brains. Gee willikers, raggazae (plural female default, screw the rules, I just made NEW rules), you may have saved more than you know.

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