May 1, 2016

"The problem right now is that the masculine has no honor whatever in our culture."

"We’re in a period now where young people are being processed for the universities, and the gender norms are said to be that gender is a construct. It is simply the product of environmental pressures on people. There’s no... nothing in the body...."

Said Camillle Paglia, in a conversation with Tyler Cowen, who'd asked here "For America, what should an ideal of masculinity look like now?"
COWEN: We have a big culture. Not everyone goes to university, thank goodness. You can go to a NASCAR race and a few of the people there have not been to the Ivy Leagues.

PAGLIA: Working class culture retains an idea of the masculine. There’s absolutely no doubt about that. But, with that, comes static. So you have to have strong women in order to deal with masculine men. That is why masculinity is constantly being eroded, diminished, and dissolved on university campuses because it allows women to be weak. If you have weak men, then you can have weak women. That’s what we have. Our university system, anything that is remotely masculine is identified as toxic, as intrinsic to rape culture. A utopian future is imagined where there are no men. We’re all genderless mannequins. The movie The Time Machine is like one. We’re moving toward that, the Eloi. That’s how I see the upper middle class graduates of the Ivy League. They’re the Eloi. They’re completely bland. They have no ideas. They all get along very well with each other because they’re nothing. They’re eating their fruits which are given to them by the Morlocks, or the industrial class. That’s how I see the future — unfortunately. I began my career talking about androgyny and talking about the imaginative complexity of androgyny and how the artist and the shaman and the prophet have this androgynous component. But today’s androgyny, it’s just boring....
Here's the precise clip (from the middle of an hour-and-a-half conversation):



I encountered the conversation because a few days ago, a commenter, Kit Carson pointed it it out because of something she said something about travel that seemed, to him, "althouse-like": "I’m like Huysmans’s aesthete, des Esseintes. I am not a great fan of traveling. I just feel like it’s become too onerous. No, I’m a mind traveler."

Here's the Huysmans text — "Against the Grain" — in full. Relevant excerpt:
The pleasure of travel, which only exists as a matter of fact in retrospect and seldom in the present, at the instant when it is being experienced, he could fully relish at his ease, without the necessity of fatigue or confusion, here in this cabin....

Movement, after all, seemed futile to him. He felt that imagination could easily be substituted for the vulgar realities of things....  One could revel... in long explorations while near one's own fireside, stimulating the restive or sluggish mind, if need be, by reading some suggestive narrative of travel in distant lands.....

The secret lies in knowing how to proceed, how to concentrate deeply enough to produce the hallucination and succeed in substituting the dream reality for the reality itself.

Artifice, besides, seemed to Des Esseintes the final distinctive mark of man's genius. Nature had had her day, as he put it. By the disgusting sameness of her landscapes and skies, she had once for all wearied the considerate patience of æsthetes. Really, what dullness! the dullness of the specialist confined to his narrow work. What manners! the manners of the tradesman offering one particular ware to the exclusion of all others. What a monotonous storehouse of fields and trees! What a banal agency of mountains and seas!
Kit Carson may have thought Paglia sounded like me, but Paglia proclaimed that she was like Des Esseintes. Reading the text, I wonder if Paglia really intended to seem to be finding nature dull and boring and best replaced by artifice and imagination. Paglia tends to recommend that brainy folk get out of their cloisters and into the real world, and I don't think she looks down her nose at "the vulgar realities of things."

In fact, the part of the conversation that interested me most, about the draining of masculinity from the loftier realms of American culture, bemoans the lack of experience living in the world, living — as she put it — in the body. That's why she talked about the Eloi. Here's the scene with the fruit-eating:



"I'm going back to my own time. I won't even bother to tell of the useless struggle, the hopeless future. But at least I can die among men!"

What Paglia said that interested me most was that "masculinity is constantly being eroded, diminished, and dissolved on university campuses because it allows women to be weak." That's a variation on something I've been thinking lately. In my way of looking at it, "allows" is the wrong word. I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak.

111 comments:

David said...

Do you mean that masculinity serves the purpose of making women weak, or the erosion does? Not clear to me.

chickelit said...

That's a variation on something I've been thinking lately. In my way of looking at it, "allows" is the wrong word. I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak.

There's probably a chemical analogy in there viz. acid-base chemistry and especially strong and weak acids/bases and buffers. I'll think about it and get back to you.

Quaestor said...

I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak.

Who's doing the eroding? Women, mainly. So why would women want to weaken themselves? No, I see no intentionality here, just the predictable result of centuries of knowledge wisdom, primarily the product of masculine minds, being thrown aside by the ignorant and the arrogant.

rhhardin said...

My theory fits better. The ideal relationship

1. Woman sends man on a quest.

2. Man goes on quest, sometimes or often screws it up.

3. Woman shows man she's satisfied with him.

repeats those three steps forever. It was the reason for the popularity of TV Get Smart in the 60s. Step 3 was always reached.

Feminism addresses all men, not any man in particular, and so can't do step 3. In a one-to-onerelationship, that's called nagging, which doesn't reflect the nagging itself but that no satisfaction is ever shown.

The university has been taken over by feminism, and there you are.

Laslo Spatula said...

I just commented about this in the previous post. ...regular men and women have let you down with their mindless clinging to the ordinary.

I comment on posts that aren't even posted yet.

I am that good.

Quaestor said...

knowledge and wisdom

Fred Drinkwater said...

The masculine is being torn down for the same reason that famous gate by the roadside was torn down. Because the folk doing it have no experience of its purpose and can't be bothered to find out.

rhhardin said...

Import dragons.

Michael K said...

I like, "Men have feelings, too. Sometimes I feel hungry."

I had lunch yesterday with a very impressive young man who is my wife's grandson. He and his uncle have a world renowned business called Emory Motorsports, which is thriving and has a two year waiting list for their projects of building and restoring antique Porsche autos for collectors. Their clients include Jay Leno and Jerry Seinfeld.

Manly pursuits with no evidence of pussification.

Read the history on the site. It tells the story.

Ann Althouse said...

"Do you mean that masculinity serves the purpose of making women weak, or the erosion does? Not clear to me."

I mean what it literally says. Don't change it on the theory that I must have intended to say something more bland.

Ann Althouse said...

My point is that the eroding masculinity has momentum because it is aligns with the long term tradition of subordinating women.

Rhythm and Balls said...

It's really quite simple. As we decided that wimmin should be dominant, they flooded the universities - replacing critical thinking with rote memorization and victimhood competitions, and replacing honor with sensitivity. Honor was necessary in economies where your word and your reputation was your bond, and men were the ones who traded with each other.

But wimmin simply don't have those values, and so they've gone away.

Ann Althouse said...

"Who's doing the eroding? Women, mainly. So why would women want to weaken themselves? No, I see no intentionality here, just the predictable result of centuries of knowledge wisdom, primarily the product of masculine minds, being thrown aside by the ignorant and the arrogant."

No one is consciously making this happen. It's cultural evolution. I am only suggesting why there's momentum in that direction.

And it doesn't make sense to see "no intentionality" and then to picture something "being thrown aside."

I think the masculinity of the men who go into higher education is being diluted and restrained and that it serves a wider goal of maintaining female subordination. Women go into this setting to acquire new strength, to equip themselves for the wider world, but if they are cosseted there, they do not get the strength. Some men are permanently stunted, perhaps, but most will either avoid higher education or take some and get out and into the competitive world. Only a minority are left in a permanently weak condition. But the women are all tricked out of the strengthening process they might have gained from education, and they're so inside the process that they imagine they are demanding it, making it happen, and benefiting.

buwaya puti said...

I understand it as feminism weakens (or tries to weaken) men, because it permits women to be weak.
If you have followed Stacey McCain for a while (which can be a challenge, he can be terribly repetitive), he has presented an enormous sample of opinion leaders in modern university feminism, not just the writers of textbooks or those teaching courses, but people, usually kids, popular in social media. In every case there is something seriously wrong with them. Mental illnesses are ubiquitous, unwise behavior is typical, strange sexual practices are, also.
In that world, the normal healthy human animal, capable of surviving catastrophes and continuing the species, is considered, perversely, defective. And the reason for that is that it makes the feminists, deficient as they generally seem to be as natural creatures, uncomfortable in their lack of status.
Modern (well, modern in some places) social conflict, largely class conflict, has perverted compassion for the afflicted into hatred of the normal.
This would be a silly thing akin to a fad for ugly clothes fashions, but intellectual fashions can cause serious damage, in this case mainly to women. How many have been led into lives of lonely futility as a result of this?

rhhardin said...

My point is that the eroding masculinity has momentum because it is aligns with the long term tradition of subordinating women.

Althouse has taken up a male definition of subordinating.

Read Vicki Hearne on this.

(Go back a a few pages to the beginning to get more comments on feminism as it's received today versus what it naturally was.)

gbarto said...

There is a Dilbert cartoon in which Dogbert wishes everyone would embrace peace and love. His parting thought is that then he could conquer the planet with a butter knife.

You may be on to something here.

rhhardin said...

The suggested Vicki Hearne reading (starting at the beginning) goes into masculinity and heroism and its relation to today, better than Paglia.

Chuck said...

The First Rule of Masculinity is that you never discuss masculinity. In fact, it should only be in extreme or technical circumstances, that the word "masculinity" should be employed at all.

Masculinity, by definition, would pretty much never even need the phrase, we need to consider masculinity... in any context.

Fred Drinkwater said...

The Eloi, of course, were not the local civilization. They were the food animals of the local civilization.

LYNNDH said...

Ok, Prof. Althouse what do you see in your students? Enquiring minds want to know.

Rhythm and Balls said...

I think the masculinity of the men who go into higher education is being diluted and restrained and that it serves a wider goal of maintaining female subordination. Women go into this setting to acquire new strength, to equip themselves for the wider world, but if they are cosseted there, they do not get the strength. Some men are permanently stunted, perhaps, but most will either avoid higher education or take some and get out and into the competitive world. Only a minority are left in a permanently weak condition. But the women are all tricked out of the strengthening process they might have gained from education, and they're so inside the process that they imagine they are demanding it, making it happen, and benefiting.

Jesus Christ - how convoluted an analysis do we need?

Wimmin prefer sensitivity and memorization to critical thought, they either don't know how to (or don't care to) use competition to positive ends, and they want to be in charge. The academy has become an adult kindergarten under their rule. The men who remained simply had no alternative but to either appropriate these perversions of priority, or rebel in the only (if ineffective) ways that such social tyranny allows. What else is there to say?

Men don't mind sensitivity, but until these hollow shells of what we once called "institutions" are turned into all-out hippie communes, there will always be a conflict between their former mission and current operation.

Of course, the exceptions are in the sciences and engineering, departments where wimmin have not figured out how to launch their passive-aggressive hostile take-over.

buwaya puti said...

R&B, what are you doing?

I have had to sit down for a minute.
An entire post I agree with.

hombre said...

Althouse: "I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak."

Really? Whose purpose is that?

Paglia's version implicitly assigns responsibility to women who wish to be "allowed" to remain weak. The Althouse version, in typical feminist fashion, implies that women are the victims of eroded masculinity. They are not. They are already weak.

hombre said...

BTW, the preferred antonym for "weak" is "strong." It is not "intelligent" or "accomplished" and it certainly is not "womanly."

Remember "womanly?" Sigh.

Rhythm and Balls said...

The Althouse version, in typical feminist fashion, implies that women are the victims of eroded masculinity. They are not. They are already weak.

Perhaps in your household. But they aren't always evil.

The hold you want to have over them however is what ensures that they will lash out in evil ways.

buwaya puti said...

hombre,

That isn't true. Women are not by nature weak, in any moral sense (moral as in not material).

Paglia is right. Feminism is a system that justifies women of feeble character in their folly, that gives them permission to avoid reforming themselves, or permits vulnerable girls to fall into bad habits.
It also permits insecure adolescent girls an excuse not to grow up. It seems this is the key to its modern popularity in universities.

cubanbob said...

What Paglia said that interested me most was that "masculinity is constantly being eroded, diminished, and dissolved on university campuses because it allows women to be weak." That's a variation on something I've been thinking lately. In my way of looking at it, "allows" is the wrong word. I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak."

So somehow some group with an agenda has decided to erode masculinity, that is weaken men to serve the purpose of making woman weak? That's some convoluted logic.

Big Mike said...

Women go into this setting to acquire new strength, to equip themselves for the wider world, but if they are cosseted there, they do not get the strength.

You got it, Professor.

@cubanbob, I find no convoluted logic. There is this fiction that strong men want weak women, but really we don't. Strong men -- not the sort of fake man who demonstrates his machismo by crushing aluminum beer cans on his forehead -- desire strong women as their life partners. If you meet someone who seems to be a strong man, and his wife is spineless, then you're looking at a fake.

Fred Drinkwater said...

The paragraph of Ann's quoted by R and B above is profoundly perverse. I am quite shocked that she could think such things.

Roughcoat said...

Feminism is a system that justifies women of feeble character in their folly, that gives them permission to avoid reforming themselves, or permits vulnerable girls to fall into bad habits.

I never saw it this way. You're right. Feminism in its present form doesn't really empower women; or, rather, it empowers them in the wrong way.

mikeyes said...

I'm sure that the .000034% of the country that read this column are disturbed by the implications.

chickelit said...

Strong men and women titrate* one another like strong acids and bases do.

(*beware the syllabification of that word -- ed.)

The Cracker Emcee said...

Like a dysfunctional marriage where it's easier for the man to live his life on the sly, rather than put up with all the drama and nagging, feminism is pushing women outside the feedback loop. The treehouses still exist. They've just been moved to places where the gurlz can't find them. I see it all the time, especially at work, where as the women are leaned-in to one another, the men can craft processes and solutions unhindered by bullshit. And by men, I also mean the women who have no patience with the feminine wankfest.

Ann Althouse said...

"Ok, Prof. Althouse what do you see in your students? Enquiring minds want to know."

Do I ever talk about my students? I doubt if you could find any post in the 40,000+ on my blog that says anything expressing an opinion about them. Maybe an occasional anecdote of something that was said in class, but not in a way that would embarrass anybody or hurt anyone's feelings.

buwaya puti said...

Paglia is wrong as to the "why".
Feminism is a social status marker.
It is deployed in social competition.
Like all these things it is a game of trumps (hah).
Your pickup is trumped by my Mustang which is trumped by his Porsche which is trumped by that guys Bugatti.
This sort of thing is usually limited by some external factor, like physical impossibility or inconvenience or cost.
Ideological status markers are limited by their effect on survival, which makes them rather dangerous, partly because the feedback loop can take a very long time, like a womans 25 years of fertility.
We have no idea of the period of the feedback loop on environmentalism, another ideological status marker, which is likely to be much more dangerous.
Anyway, the present state of the social competition has permitted a "safe space" in universities for foolish, destructive attitudes and behavior. Paglia complains about the effects of the cause.

Ann Althouse said...

"Paglia's version implicitly assigns responsibility to women who wish to be "allowed" to remain weak. The Althouse version, in typical feminist fashion, implies that women are the victims of eroded masculinity. They are not. They are already weak."

I'm not pointing out victims and villains. I'm observing cultural evolution (as is Paglia). It's not a conscious struggle with winners and losers. In fact, I'm showing you how those who think they are pursuing ends that they want may in fact be participating in a dynamic that isn't in their interest.

Ann Althouse said...

Why does anything happen in the arrangements of males and females? I would assume that both see advantages in what they are choosing to do, where we have a decent amount of choice. Why does anyone go along with self-weakening or with letting someone else dominate and why does anyone bother to overpower and outfight someone else? Some of it is sexual feeling, I would assume.

Roughcoat said...


Two gems:

Like a dysfunctional marriage where it's easier for the man to live his life on the sly, rather than put up with all the drama and nagging, feminism is pushing women outside the feedback loop.

And:

Anyway, the present state of the social competition has permitted a "safe space" in universities for foolish, destructive attitudes and behavior.

This quite good. I'm learning new things.

Laslo Spatula said...

The Slightly-Less-Than-Average-Intelligence Althouse Reader says:

I know you Smart People.

You can call to mind any of a dozen arguments on why masculinity must be rigorously controlled and restrained. And this control and restraint is always to benefit women who feel unjustly controlled and restrained.

So the answer to their feelings is to give them the power to do to others what they believe is being done to them.

And what they feel is being done to them is always some form of Rape.

They feel emotionally raped by the Patriarchy: let them redefine Rape more loosely.

They feel emotionally raped by Biology: let them redefine gender roles.

They feel emotionally raped by Dissatisfaction, not realizing these two feelings for them are conjoined.

Meanwhile, ordinary men and women are doing it all wrong. They respect each other, acknowledge each other's strengths and weaknesses, help each other.

And the eternally Raped endlessly feel emotionally raped that they are not taken seriously:

I get it.

And I figure you don't get it.

Because you're Smart.


I am Laslo.

rhhardin said...

Why does anyone go along with self-weakening or with letting someone else dominate and why does anyone bother to overpower and outfight someone else? Some of it is sexual feeling, I would assume.

Skipping the "shows the male she's satisfied with him" step in what's an otherwise natural sequence, is the bad idea formalized in feminism.

exhelodrvr1 said...

"No one is consciously making this happen."

It is absolutely being done consciously and intentionally. In politics, in the school systems, in the military. It is clearly deliberate.

exhelodrvr1 said...

Feminism empowers women relatively speaking, by decreasing the value of masculinity, not by increasing the value of feminism.

Roughcoat said...


Laslo, I'm just a simple unfrozen caveman. You modern ways frighten and confuse me.

buwaya puti said...

It's conscious on one level, but not so on another.
In detail, it is deliberate - specific rules and policies to "solve" some perceived problem.
The unconscious parts are the context - of the perception of the "problem", of the value judgements of cost vs benefit, of the temporal value orientation - I prefer to avoid some minor annoyance now vs dealing with some disastrous outcome in the seemingly distant future.

dreams said...

I think its the result of modern society, life in the nineteenth century/early twentieth was hard and labor intensive and so the roles of men and women reflected that reality.

Saint Croix said...

Humanist, not feminist.

That's a very gentle, very feminine, scorching rebuke.

But she's a girl so don't listen.

cubanbob said...

@ Big Mike, of course it's a circle-jerk. Go to university to become what? Less capable of dealing with the real world than if not have gone to university? Since when is the campus real life? Maybe for the few who parlay a career in academia but for the rest eventually the real world it is.

You are right about strong men wanting strong woman in a marriage. What strong guy wants an incompetent and incapable wife?

Kate said...

Goodness. Paglia says the opposite of what I'm reading here: masculinity allows women to be weak. Feminism, which calls for a stronger woman, erodes masculinity because the feminists don't want the weakness that comes with it. Whether or not she's right, I don't know. But I don't think you're arguing her position.

Sebastian said...

"we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak" Done. Consider it wrong. Consider it an instance of Althouse Law corollary: any problem that can be presented as harming women, will be. Here, the issue is the undermining of masculinity. Why is it bad? Because it is bad for women! Insinuation: sinister forces are trying to keep women down. Unintentionally. By weakening men. Sure.

Here's what's actually been happening, for oh, the past half century: using the faux trope that women-are-human, as if that had never occurred to any Christian created in the image of God, "feminism" has been in the deliberate, conscious, consistent business of devaluing anything masculine previously valued as part of the established social order. Women are always put upon. Women always need more. Men are always at fault.

But Paglia doesn't go far enough. The masculinity issue is just one aspect of the progressive transvaluation of all values. We've passed that station. Next stop: transgenderism. Anything and everything needs to be broken down, down to an unaccountable subjectivity ruled over by a caring Leviathan. Progs aren't done yet.

Achilles said...

AA: "I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak."

Ann, you are so close to figuring out what the Statists like Obama and his predecessors like FDR or Wilson have long been after. Progressivism is nothing more than a means to turn the population into sheep to be easily managed by the state.

A crappy public "education" system here which you literally go to jail if you fail to get your child into in Washington State. A little Eugenics/planned parenthood there that weeds the poor/violent black people out. A publicly funded university system that loads debt on young people while indoctrinating them and giving them largely useless skills.

Achilles said...

Rhythm and Balls said...
"It's really quite simple. As we decided that wimmin should be dominant, they flooded the universities - replacing critical thinking with rote memorization and victimhood competitions, and replacing honor with sensitivity. Honor was necessary in economies where your word and your reputation was your bond, and men were the ones who traded with each other.

But wimmin simply don't have those values, and so they've gone away."

When you say "we decided" I assume this refers to progressives who are the only people who espouse that. The ones at the top realize it is a foolish path and that all it will result in is roll insecurity for both men and women and will just foster resentment between the 2 groups. But our plutarchs have been busy building resentment in the population for the balance of human history and their weapon of choice has always been government monopolies on force in the end.

Lem said...

The problem right now is counting to 99...

Gahrie said...

I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak.

Masculinity eroded..women hardest hit.

My point is that the eroding masculinity has momentum because it is aligns with the long term tradition of subordinating women.

Oh God..it gets worse...now eroding masculinity is a plot to subordinate women! I suppose alimony is a plot to keep women dependent?

I think the masculinity of the men who go into higher education is being diluted and restrained and that it serves a wider goal of maintaining female subordination. Women go into this setting to acquire new strength, to equip themselves for the wider world, but if they are cosseted there, they do not get the strength. Some men are permanently stunted, perhaps, but most will either avoid higher education or take some and get out and into the competitive world.

What about all the women who don't go to university? How do we men manage to subjugate them?

EDH said...

PAGLIA: That’s how I see the upper middle class graduates of the Ivy League. They’re the Eloi. They’re completely bland. They have no ideas. They all get along very well with each other because they’re nothing. They’re eating their fruits which are given to them by the Morlocks, or the industrial class. That’s how I see the future — unfortunately.

Malia Obama to attend Harvard in 2017

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama’s daughter Malia will take a year off after graduating high school in June before attending Harvard University in 2017.

‘‘The president and Mrs. Obama announced today that their daughter Malia will attend Harvard University in the fall of 2017 as a member of the Class of 2021,’’ said a short statement issued Sunday by first lady Michelle Obama’s office. ‘‘Malia will take a gap year before beginning school.’’

... Malia, the eldest of the Obamas’ two daughters, is a 17-year-old senior at Sidwell Friends, an exclusive private school in the District of Columbia that helped educate another first daughter, Chelsea Clinton, in the 1990s. Malia’s younger sister, Sasha, 14, is a freshman at Sidwell. Malia is set to graduate high school in June. She turns 18 on the Fourth of July...

The first lady has said Malia wants to be a filmmaker. Malia spent last summer in New York City interning on the set of HBO’s ‘‘Girls,’’ starring Lena Dunham. She spent the summer of 2014 in California working as a production assistant on ‘‘Extant,’’ a now-canceled CBS sci-fi drama that starred Halle Berry. Malia has also had internships at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo in Washington.

The president turned down an invitation to speak at Malia’s Sidwell graduation because he will be too emotional.


‘‘I'm going to be sitting there with dark glass, sobbing,’’ he told Ellen DeGeneres during an appearance on her talk show.

Obama grew up without his father, who was born in Kenya and is now deceased, and has spoken of his desire to be there for his kids. The bond between Obama and his children was readily apparent, as he often was seen holding hands with either daughter getting on or off the presidential aircraft or on the family’s walks through Lafayette Park to attend services at St. John’s Episcopal Church.

AReasonableMan said...

I blame nuclear physicists. In creating the Bomb they largely eliminated manliness from war-making and turned it into a technocratic endeavor dominated by a small coterie of poorly coordinated men. All we have left is sports, and the entertainment industry has largely fucked that as well.

Joe said...

Feminism doesn't just help weak women, but allows weak men to survive in places they shouldn't. My last boss was one such man--nice and smart, but so weak he couldn't tolerate any dissent of any kind. The end result was a team of sheep and a project that was the biggest train wreck I've ever been involved in. Wouldn't be so bad except the project helps protect lives.

This is the most extreme example. Unfortunately, this bullshit "kumbaya" attitude about teams has pervaded all of business. Even the most mild criticism is met with disapproval.

(Some years ago, I was dealing with a vendor who was treating us like shit. I wrote a very strongly worded email, slept on it, softened the email and then sent it. Turns out I'd made a mistake and accidentally sent the first draft. The account manager at the vendor, a woman, started to cry and threatened to quit because of my email. My boss immediately reprimanded me, but then looked at the chain of emails and admitted I was right, though I shouldn't have used "[no] fucking [clue]".

As they say, you don't cry in baseball. You also don't cry when you treat your customers like shit and they get pissed off.)

bagoh20 said...

As in many other species, dissatisfaction is how the female human exerts power over males. Feminism has just overplayed that dynamic to where the dissatisfaction is generic rather than specific. That generic form is what we call erosion of masculinity. It's like the detrimental effects of any addiction. Women have become addicted to the power play of dissatisfaction, because they can now afford to alienate all men, at least economically. In the long run, it's dysfunctional for the species as a whole and each sex in different ways.

BDNYC said...

Feminists want to erode masculinity, and therefore male confidence, because a self-assured man is more likely to take women seriously and question what they think or do. Feminists do not want women judged by men on their merits. They want men cowed and silent because in their opinion men are oppressors by nature. Masculinity is the problem.

This has nothing to do with people wanting women to remain weak. Feminists may want women to suffer no consequences from their weakness -- because that's the fault of patriarchy of course -- but they probably believe their full-spectrum assault on masculinity is an assertion of strength that will result in the empowerment of all women. Including the weak ones.

Fernandinande said...

"Eloi" twice in one day - what are the chances of that never happening?

"Western civilization is collapsing. We see that as the Islamic invasion of pampered Eloi Europe continues apace, meeting little resistance, and, in fact, often welcomed with open arms and wallets."

buwaya puti said...

It is a problem for women much more than men, even the idiotic university policies. Nature doesn't care about justice.
Men are expendable, by nature. Some will lose, some are weak, but the remainder, who are strong enough to survive the feminist fashion, get all the women.
The big loss is women, as they aren't expendable. The worst of it is that many of the best, the talented and intelligent, are the worst affected.

Achilles said...

AReasonableMan said...
"I blame nuclear physicists. In creating the Bomb they largely eliminated manliness from war-making and turned it into a technocratic endeavor dominated by a small coterie of poorly coordinated men. All we have left is sports, and the entertainment industry has largely fucked that as well."

It wan't nuclear physicists that did that. It was people like Ashton Carter and also Obama who selected him. In 2008 and even 9,10 and 11 Ranger Battalion was very well coordinated and very effective at our job. Speed, communication, violence of action are all still there at the enlisted level.

It is the college educated leadership that is falling apart. Obama has culled the generals. But do not underestimate the readiness at the platoon and company level. That readiness is mostly based on the NCO core and they are still top notch.

n.n said...

Women have been enlisted, not only to promote evolutionary dysfunction, but also to demoralize and destroy their male complement. As far as conspiracies go, there could not be a more ingenious strategy to conquer a technologically superior civilization. In order to circumvent natural and moral orientations appeal to greed, lust, sloth, and fear.

The war between sexes is promoted for the same reason as [class] diversity schemes, which are designed to marginalize individuals and promote prejudice in order to reduce cohesiveness in a community and society.

dreams said...

Maybe the Instapundit can help.

"ANALYSIS: TRUE. Matthew McConaughey explains why Knoxville, Tennessee has the most beautiful women."

http://pjmedia.com/instapundit/

chickelit said...

buwaya puti said...

It is a problem for women much more than men, even the idiotic university policies. Nature doesn't care about justice.
Men are expendable, by nature. Some will lose, some are weak, but the remainder, who are strong enough to survive the feminist fashion, get all the women.
The big loss is women, as they aren't expendable. The worst of it is that many of the best, the talented and intelligent, are the worst affected.


And a few weeks' paid "meternity" leave is small recompense for what they spurned.

tom swift said...

The Time Machine a movie? Well, yes ... two of them, at last count. I seem to remember a book first. Wells was speculating about the ultimate development of the English class system. He wasn't so much concerned about gender wars.

But no matter.

A crippling problem in any sort of analysis is the automatic assumption that any differences under discussion must be evaluated in terms of superiority or inferiority. But the essential feature of differences is not relative superiority or inferiority, but that some things are more suited to certain tasks or positions or functions than others.

Conquering a frontier is an example. North America, mechanical flight, transoceanic telegraph cables, shipyards, steel mills ... these are vast projects which have been started and completed by men. A major part of the ultimate success of these projects comes from a simple credo: never surrender.

Once the job is done and women start complaining that it can't have been all that difficult and that they should be in charge now, that masculine credo dies. But it's still indispensible; without it, we see the modern world; Europe succumbing to the expansion of barbarous medievalism (it's not by chance that Charles the Hammer and Jan Sobieski were men, and Angela Merkel is not), America spiraling down the bottomless pit of socialist totalitarianism.

The cure? Men. Annoying, stubborn, inflexible men who never give up. Is that good? Sometimes not obviously, just as amputation might easily seem to be worse than the medical problem it's intended to fix. But that's the cure, nevertheless.

Obviously, men are also the threat; Suleiman and Marx were men. But once the threats are established, they have to be fought, and they're much more effectively fought by other men.

Women are much better than men at a great many things. But building and maintaining civilization ... usually, not so much.

Quaestor said...

And it doesn't make sense to see "no intentionality" and then to picture something "being thrown aside."

History is full of examples of traditions, agreements, understandings being quite deliberately being thrown aside with predictable yet at the time ignored or discounted consequences. One example comes to mind because it is the subject of some of my current reading. Under William II Germany abandoned her previous naval policy of a coastal defense fleet to acquire a navy capable of contesting the control of the Atlantic against the British. The intent was to increase German prestige and to compel Britain to acquiesce to Germany's "place in the sun". The predictable result was war, but William and his navy minister Tirpitz discounted the obvious in favor of the theoretical "fleet in being" concept.

The policy of emasculation in force in our universities is quite intentional, but the parallel result seen by Paglia — weakening of women — is not intended. This is just an example of the law of unintended consequences in operation, and makes perfect sense to anyone using history as a guide.

No one is consciously making this happen.

By this haven't you admitted my observation of "no intentionality" is correct?

Rusty said...

Quaestor said...
"I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak."

"Who's doing the eroding? Women, mainly. "

Weak women. Feminists. Especially the ugly ones.

Birkel said...

I still cannot understand what all the fish are doing, arguing over a bicycle. It makes no sense to me.

And this is all intentional. The Long March Through the Institutions happened on purpose, by international communists/socialists who wanted to tear down the institutions of the West (and the United States foremost) and replace them with the unworkable, false and deadly dream.

In the end, many will recognize that they were useful idiots. Even some really smart useful idiots may at the last see their folly.

The biggest threat to this country comes from within - the Leviathan State.

AllenS said...

Women do fine... in nations rooted in Western Civilization. Not so much any where else.

chickelit said...

There never should have been a woman's equality movement. Instead, there should have been woman's equivalency movement. True equality between sexes is demonstrably false. Equivalency is the better goal anyways and is in line with nature, right down to the atoms.

Robert Cook said...

Wells' Eloi and Morlocks were his extrapolation of the ultimate end result of the class system, with the Eloi representing the ultimate form of the decadent upper classes, corrupted by their lives of ease and leisure, and the Morlocks the ultimate form of the working classes, divorced from access to education and culture, reduced to brutishness.

THE TIME MACHINE is a great book...the movies, not so much. The penultimate section of the book, with the Time Traveler at the far end of the earth's life, is eerie and haunting, the world now but a perpetually twilight world, with little apparent life but large, nearly motionless crab-like creatures on a forlorn shore.

Cath said...

I've always thought it's weak men doing the eroding of masculinity, especially on campus. If Pajama Boy can convince the girls that all the Tom Brady types on campus are potential rapists - or better still, get lots of those guys expelled on bs rape accusations - then Pajama Boy has a better chance to get the girls.

Of course Pajama Boy can't do it all on his own, so the cooperation of the bookish nerdy male professors and administrators, who also want a shot at the girls, is required and obtained.

The corresponding weakening of women does occur, but is a by-product.

eric said...

That was some terrible editing. I haven't seen that movie for a long time, but surely that wasn't how it was originally? The guy asking "Why" over and over again was just the same scene cut and replayed. And it didn't even fit with the rest of the scene some of the time.

Please tell me that clip isn't the right clip and there is a better one out there somewhere.

Ann Althouse said...

Paglia referrred to the movies. She's into the visual arts and music mostly.

Birkel said...

Cath,

How clever Panama Boy must be, to have convinced Andrea Dworkin and Kitty MacKinnon to be born in 1946!

And how powerful to convince them to argue on his behalf so that weak men could get laid!

There are none so blind as those who will not see.

pm317 said...

I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak.

Kind of socialism in the gender realm.

buwaya puti said...

Based on reports from the front lines - the campuses of the UC - "pajama boy" does rather poorly on the whole, in spite of the girls complaining about the lack of boys.
Also the idea of unisex bathrooms is very unpopular.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

As Fred Drinkwater noted, the Morlock's ate the Eloi.

Talk about why masculinity is being devalued, is it to help create weak women, is rather beside the point.

In the end people who have not devalued masculinity are going to assert themselves. Screeds on the patriarchy are not going to persuade those people. Who then is going to stand up to them?

hombre said...

Althouse: "I'm not pointing out victims and villains. I'm observing cultural evolution (as is Paglia). It's not a conscious struggle with winners and losers."

I don't buy the "shit happens" theory of eroding masculinity on campus and I don't believe Paglia does either, hence, "... masculinity is constantly BEING eroded ...", not, "... masculinity is constantly eroding...."

There are people doing the "eroding", the "identifying" and the "imagining" of which Paglia speaks and they are doing it intentionally.

The Eloi may not have been conscious of being mindless drones, but you can be sure the Morlocks were consciously and intentionally taking the steps necessary to keep them that way.

Fernandinande said...

Robert Cook said...
THE TIME MACHINE is a great book...the movies, not so much


Well, it was filmed in Culver City. Wells had another story of the future wherein the environment was essentially a big, harmless civilized park, animals, such as tigers, were tame and friendly and everyone did what they felt like, and what they felt like doing was scientific research.

Wells was big on socialism:
"So long as the consideration of types is not raised, the eugenic proposition is very simple: superior persons must mate with superior persons, inferior persons must not have offspring at all, and the only thing needful is some test that will infallibly detect superiority.
...
I am inclined to believe that a large proportion of our present-day criminals are the brightest and boldest members of families living under impossible conditions, and that in many desirable qualities the average criminal is above the average of the law-abiding poor and probably of the average respectable person. Many eminent criminals appear to me to be persons superior in many respects--in intelligence, initiative, originality---to the average judge. I will confess I have never known either."

Quaestor said...

I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak.

Is it just my imagination, or do I detect a whiff of post-feminist paranoia?

hombre said...

R&B: "Perhaps in your household. But they aren't always evil. The hold you want to have over them however is what ensures that they will lash out in evil ways."

"Your household"? "Evil"? "The hold..."? "Lash out"?

Old grudges give rise to non sequiturs. And you were doing so well.

Birkel said...

Check your nose, Quaestor. You and Althouse may both be suffering anosmia if all you smell is a whiff.

Michael said...

The good news is that real men and real women do not spend one second thinking about this or engaging in this crazy talk. They are too busy supporting each other, making and educating children and generally being normal. And this yapping is not normal outside of ten miles from any major university. Not normal at all. Real men are sucking it up doing what they must to make the wheels of life turn as smoothly as possible. Real women are supporting them either at home or in their own jobs. Everybody sucks it up in the real world.

There is no "erosion" in the real world.

Birkel said...

Michael:

The Leviathan State is throwing sand into 'the wheels of life' as quickly as their girlie arms will let them. Real people have not shrugged yet. From my vantage point, the question is whether people are ground down before they begin to resist en masse.

The "coming middle class anarchy" will arrive. I hope it arrives before the State is able to diminish the middle class sufficiently toward their purposes.

Quaestor said...

Notice I used the term post-feminist in my last comment.

Feminism is dead, and we live in the post-feminist era. It mayn't seem dead on first glance as it continues to flutter and scamper about like a guillotined chicken, but dead it is. It started coughing up blood when the likes of Bill Clinton got his get out of jail free card thanks to Steinem, Allred, et al. But the movement truly flatlined on 9-11.

Feminism is dead because feminists refuse to see the clear and present danger to women, and instead invent fables and mythologies about so-called rape culture, yet on those same campuses where feminists hysterically assault masculinity, females students go about in shadors and even burkas without comment, even though these are deliberate symbols of female subjugation.

Unless virility regains its virtuousness in the West, the kind so admired by the Stoics, the real subjugators of women will soon dominate. Those of you preoccupied by reproductive rights and transsexual restroom privileges are going to wonder where the rough men ready to do violence have gone.

Quaestor said...

Check your nose, Quaestor.

Maybe it's like doggie — when there's too much of it about you don't notice it so much.

Balfegor said...

Re: Quaestor:

The policy of emasculation in force in our universities is quite intentional, but the parallel result seen by Paglia — weakening of women — is not intended.

They might not intend it as weakening of women, but they do specifically intend 90% of what comprises that weakening of women. They didn't accidentally arrive at the notion that when a drunk man and a drunk woman have sex, the man has retained his faculties and the woman is a victim of rape, or the notion that the gentler sex are naturally so timid and subservient that they need "safe spaces" to be able to express themselves freely, or indeed that their tender psyches are so fragile that certain topics oughtn't be broached in their presence for fear of "triggering" a bout of hysteria (keep some sal volatile on hand).

These neo-Victorian mores were arrived at quite consciously and intentionally. We mustn't let ourselves be misled by the way their proponents dress them up with rubbish about feminism and female empowerment.

Michael K said...

"In creating the Bomb they largely eliminated manliness from war-making and turned it into a technocratic endeavor dominated by a small coterie of poorly coordinated men."

That was true briefly in the 50s but Vietnam showed us that it doesn't work. The Army went on to rebuild under the all-volunteer force. It is working well, no matter what metrosexual men like Kerry say. Kids want to go into the Marine Corps, especially, to test their manliness. Most of the Marine recruits I see are 17 and straight out of high school.

The BS about women in combat is an affectation of women officers who want a ticket punched for promotion. Surveys of active duty women show that 98% do not want combat assignments.

I just got home from an air show today that was well attended by lots of young couples as well as old farts like me. I was asking my wife what she thought the percentage of Trump voters was.

Pretty high, I would guess.

The idiots like this one are freak shows that people will look at and then go on with their business.

Feminism is becoming a curiosity instead of a movement based on reality. Young men, like my wife's grandson, are getting on with their lives and they will find nice girls who want what they want.

My son and grandson were with us at the air show. Lots of fun.

traditionalguy said...

Billy Bob Thornton's version of The Alamo from 2004 was on cable today. It was
a reminder that 200 years ago there were very strong men from Andrew Jackson at New Orleans through Sam Housto at San Jacinto who were the actual founding fathers of America.

Joe said...

Andrew Jackson wasn't a founding father and a bit of an ass.

Lucien said...

If you're looking for a lesson in masculinity you could do worse than watching what Austin Rivers did the other night.

Birkel said...

Andrew Jackson ignored the Supreme Court and attempted to subjugate a nation. Democrats don't change much. Curious that traditionalguy admires Democrats from Andrew Jackson on through time to Donald Trump.

Odd.

rhhardin said...

Nietzsche said that feminism wants a castrated woman, not a castrated man.

tim in vermont said...

Thanks God Walt Whitman has brought a fresh load of rhetorical ammunition in defense of manliness.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Yes. Well, a mind that can't follow things is definitely prone to seeing non-sequiturs.

wildswan said...

"The policy of emasculation in force in our universities is quite intentional, but the parallel result seen by Paglia — weakening of women — is not intended."

I agree. Women who work get in among men who are accustomed to shoving at each other and taking blows and not crying. Either you learn to take it or you lose. BUT you have to learn to take it in a way that doesn't disqualify you as a wife and mother; you can't accept being mean or even being "business-like" as a family-life style or as foundations for a love life. The easy way is to force men to stop being aggressive at college and at work rather than having several roles as a woman. But then you never learn to live up to an impersonal challenge - and women cannot enter the work force and avoid impersonal challenges. A lot of them do not see that and so they get out of college and still they don't know what "just do it" or "handle it" means.

Laslo Spatula said...

Quaestor said...
"Is it just my imagination, or do I detect a whiff of post-feminist paranoia?"

In Sweden and Germany it smells like knock-off Drakkar Noir in the subway stations.

I am Laslo.

Laslo Spatula said...

Charles Bronson.

I am thinking that we have no modern equivalent to Charles Bronson.

Benicio Del Toro might come close visually in a pretty boy way, but he has no presence of Eternally Doing The Manly Thing.

And The Eternal Manly Thing is to protect the Women.

Women before being protected and rescued by Bronson would not look at him twice.

Once protected and rescued, they would fall in Love with The True Man of Men, and never be able to look at another man in quite the same way. Maybe he would stay with them, maybe he wouldn't: that was the Way of the Bronson.

Don't get me wrong: I love the Clint Eastwood. But he always knew the women loved him, even before he took action.

Bronson knew the women reflexively veered from him, yet he took to their Rescue Every Damned Fucking Time.

Women of the Seventies knew the need for a Bronson; today's ladies not so much.

Pity.

I am Laslo.

Laslo Spatula said...

If I awake in the morning without at least one "Hell Yeah!" for the 7:16 Charles Bronson comment then I will be left to sadly realize that there is nobody left but pussies.

Vote 'Charles Bronson 2016'.


I am Laslo.

traditionalguy said...

Consider that University Administration mega salary rip off game has championed Women but all that power has gone to Dominant Lesbian Women; Who are the instinctive predators of the weak young female prey and competitors of the strong men for them.
Now does it all make more sense.

Michael K said...

" all that power has gone to Dominant Lesbian Women"

This is nothing new. Fifty years ago, at LA County Hospital, the director of surgery nursing was a lesbian and young nurses who resisted her advances worked the night shift. Everybody knew what it took to get the day shift,

Laslo Spatula said...

'What Would Bronson Do?'

"Mr. Bronson?"

"Yes, child? Call me Charles."

"Uh...Charles?"

"Yes, sweetie?"

"My boyfriend beats me something fierce."

"He does what?"

"He beats me, night after night. And he's got me hooked on drugs."

"He's strung you out on Dope?"

"Yes. I am so ashamed..."

"There is no reason for you to be ashamed. Once he is dead you will be able to clean up from the Dope and live a productive, happy Life. Have some children. Smile."

"Oh! You can't KILL him Mr. Bronson! He's just lost his way."

"Sweetie, men like him don't lose THEIR way: they have lost THE Way. They are driving the wrong way down a city street full of innocent children playing. And you know what has to happen then?"

"Hope for a Policeman?"

"The Police will never be their in time, sweetie. Children will be run over like cats. He has to be parked... Eternally parked."

"If he is dead he can't hurt me anymore, right Mr. Bronson."

"He'll never be able to hurt anyone else again, sweetie."

"You won't hurt him when you kill him, will you?"

"Only for a second, Miss: only for a second...."

I am Laslo.

Qwinn said...

So women collectively demonize all things male... and yet, somehow, amazingly, women are the real victims.

"Women hardest hit", indeed.

Something tells me that this particular thought experiment isn't going to lead to stronger women.

Andrew Pardue said...

Lasso I will give you that Hell Yeah

Andrew Pardue said...

Sorry Laslo

David said...

"Do I ever talk about my students? I doubt if you could find any post in the 40,000+ on my blog that says anything expressing an opinion about them. Maybe an occasional anecdote of something that was said in class, but not in a way that would embarrass anybody or hurt anyone's feelings."

One of the marks of a strong woman-or man--is restraint. Most of the strong women I know don't have much affinity for the whiners.

Fen said...

"I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak."

It serves the purpose of making women dependent on the State. Its why the Marxists co-opted feminism and made her their bitch in the first place. Notice how all the rad fems are likewise big supporters Statism? Uncle Sam is their Sugar Daddy.



"I think we need to consider -"

Most of us on the Right already knew this. And in our 30s. Better late than never, I guess.

EMD said...

Death Wishes, Charlie Bronson

Jupiter said...

"I think we need to consider whether masculinity is constantly being eroded because it serves the purpose of making women weak."

Whose purpose would that be?

tim in vermont said...

Jupiter is right. Either we need more explanation, or change it to "has the effect of" or something similar.

If course for eons, women have selected men to support them in their struggle for survival. Now these men's emotions, selected for over millions of years of evolution, are considered retrograde.

Those people who say that women have had no agency in human evolution, that sexual selection has not been a huge factor, as one of my daughter's young friends, a sociology major does, do not account for the fact that women hold most of the cards in sexual relationships when it comes to evolution.