29 Comments

FAQ: What roles should men play in feminism?

Just as there’s no easy answer to the question of whether or not a man should call himself a “feminist” or go by a different term, there’s no easy answer for what role men should play in feminism. Below are a collection of different thoughts and perspectives of what men can do to be good allies.

Michael Flood [XY-Online]

Although the following advice is from a piece specifically addressing the men’s rights movement, the excerpted parts are just as suited to be general advice to pro-feminist men:

(1) Assert a feminist-supportive and male-positive perspective.

Men such as ourselves, men with a concern for men’s issues and a sympathy for feminism, should be trying as hard as possible to take up space in the public arena and to affect social and political relations. We should be writing letters to the editor, lobbying politicians, sending submissions, being interviewed, phoning talkback, plugging XY, holding meetings, forming alliances, getting funding, doing deals and shaking hands.

One point of all this is to create an alternative voice on gender issues that is specifically male. Of course it is essential that women take up as much space as possible too, but pro-feminist men have a particular role we can play, and ironically, sometimes we may be listened to more because we are male. We need to show that anti-feminist men do not speak for all men. [...]

(2) TAKE up men’s rights issues, but differently.

[...] We need to take up the issues about which men’s rights men are vocal, offering an alternative analysis of their character and causes. We have to try to reach the men who otherwise might join men’s rights organisations and in some cases who have their pain turned into anti-women backlash. Doing so will be challenging, and it may involve questioning aspects of the feminist-informed analyses we have held so far. I believe that a recognition of areas of men’s pain and even disadvantage is compatible with a feminist understanding (that is, an understanding based on a commitment to gender equality and justice), but it may take some reworking for this compatibility to be realised. [...]

(4) Set up services.

Whether the issue is divorce or men’s health, we need to provide feminist-informed or at the very least feminist-neutral (and of course male-positive) services and resources for men. If men who have gone through painful divorces and messy custody proceedings, men who are hurting and confused, can find access to such services, they will be able to work through this in ways that are healthy and safe. In fact, I believe that this is happening in Brisbane, as a coalition of women’s and community groups respond to the Men’s Rights Agency and the Hillcrest murders.

geo [Feminist Allies]

Underneath these types of efforts women have largely created the modern feminist movement and done the work to push things forward with minimal male support and almost no parallel work done by men.

I don’t see this changing significantly until a lot more men start seeing traditional masculinity as problematic and seriously work towards change. I believe that to do serious work most men are going to need to do work with other men initially. As we learn to work with other men we can begin to become real allies of women and build coalitions with groups that are predominantly female.

Where we try to jump into women’s groups and work with women we often have problems. Most men have a lot to work out within ourselves related to our masculinity and how we relate to women as well as other men. When we try to work out our issues within women’s groups we repeat the pattern of women needing to educate men about our feelings and many other related issues.

When we’ve done serious work with other men we may become able to work with women’s groups either as a part of them or as their ally from outside.

Undoubtedly there are individual men who can work with women without going through the necessity of working with men. Since many of the problems related to feminism require work with men it would seem logical for most men supportive of feminism to try to work with other men.

Whether women and women’s groups should let men in depends greatly on many factors. There are situations like women’s health clubs where men intrude upon women’s space and make it much harder for women to focus on their physical and emotional health. [...]

As men I believe that we need to build a movement or a set of movements amongst ourselves to help allow us to be better allies of women, children and other men. While it would be nice if we could move in a “feminist” direction out of concern for women and girls, I think it far more likely that we will find paths towards our successful future looking initially at men and boys and how we are hurting. Until we can see how we as Males are hurt by our “Maleness” and understand the desirability of making changes in our own lives, it is difficult to see how we will en masse support women and girls in important and necessary ways.

Related Reading:

Introductory:

Clarifying Concepts:

  • In relation to “armchair feminism”:

    Some of the, shall we say, “tentativeness” with which I write about feminism comes from the complexities of being a feminist man, of wanting to carefully navigate space that has been created by (mostly) women, and in some cases is thought of as a safe space for women, a refuge from a sexist world. Which is not to say that I haven’t felt entirely welcome in some feminist spaces–in fact, I’ve felt very welcome in most feminist spaces, both online and in the Real World. But feeling comfortable doesn’t stop me from being careful, looking for blind spots related to male privilege, and making an effort to listen when my socialization encourages me to talk. My constructively critical friend might say that I’m too careful, and that may very well be so. Or perhaps I just haven’t learned (yet) how to navigate without being overly careful. Or, perhaps, I’m comfy in my Feminist Armchair, and I’m using this stuff as an excuse. Likely it’s a mix of all of this stuff.

  • Example of behaviors men should avoid:

    Last week I attended the Forging Justice conference in Detroit, which was jointly sponsored by National Organization for Men Against Sexism (NOMAS) and HAVEN, a domestic violence and sexual assault agency in Oakland County, Michigan. [...]

    After the panel was over, Cristy from HAVEN came up to me and told me something shocking: minutes if not seconds before the panel was to begin, two white male co-chairs of NOMAS told her that the live-streaming of the panel would be turned off for my presentation after two other panelists spoke. She also told me that the men had indicated that, depending on what I say, they were prepared to step in and interrupt my presentation on the spot. [...]

    Worst of all, [NOMAS co-founder Robert] Brannon and other members of NOMAS did not bother to ask any questions at my presentation, or approach me privately to discuss their concerns or disagreements; they just censored my presentation, threatened to interrupt and shut it down, and talked disparagingly about me, not with me, as if I did not belong in the feminist conversations over issues that directly affect me and my community. [...]

    [NOMAS national co-chair Moshe] Rozdzial seems to think that he and other men of NOMAS get to define what feminism is, and censor women–in this instance, a survivor and a woman of color with first-hand experiences in the sex trade–because, apparently, women who disagree with NOMAS are not feminists. He also fabricates mutuality and consent where none existed, like any rapist who is confronted about violating another person without their consent, while blaming Cristy in the process. [...]

    Meanwhile, Brannon, clearly angry from all the women challenging him and his colleagues, rushed toward the only other (as far as I know) woman of color in the room, activist Lauren Chief Elk of Save Wįyąbi Project, who had given a wonderful keynote speech in the morning. Standing extremely close to her with his hands raised, violating her personal space, he kept telling her that she was wrong to criticize racism within first-wave feminism and suggesting that he knew more about her people and culture than she did because he has read history books, much the same way he acted as if his “social science” background made him an expert about sex trade over someone who has actual lived experiences in it. [...]

    To be honest, I never expected this conference to be that great. I have had enough unpleasant interactions with “feminist men” in the past, especially cis white men (which NOMAS mostly, although not exclusively, is), and never trusted them as a group. But I did not expect my experience at the conference to be this horrible: is this really what feminist and pro-feminist men do in the name of feminism? But once I disregarded their self-identification as feminists or pro-feminists, all the irony was lost: they are just bunch of racist, sexist, white men.

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29 comments on “FAQ: What roles should men play in feminism?

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  3. “to be good allies”

    Feminism isn’t owned by women. By having that mindset it’s pushing it away from males, into a struggle that only women have a part in.
    Mic check, all males have a mother, most a partner, and many female siblings. All men are affected by gender inequality , including the inequality that males have.

    The only way forward is in harmony.

    Of course men have a part in feminism. To say not to is absurd.

    By taking the truth that “its women against men”, like so many radical feminist do, is making a guilty gender!

    Which is pushing the “dream” of gendr equality even further from fruitition

  4. Paul, I would highly recommend that you read and go through all the links of the male privilege FAQ because what you’re doing right now is assuming a level playing field where there is none.

    No one here is saying that “it’s women against men”, but I think it would also be worth it for you to realize that doing what you did in this comment — which is dismissing the term “ally” out of hand (without even asking why I chose that term or what it means in this context) and then demanding that men be given “equal” say in a movement that, historically, has been one that has focused on giving women a voice that they are denied in the mainstream — is exactly why there are feminists who feel that men can’t call themselves feminists without dominating and effectively drowning out the women in the movement.

    And 99.9% of those men aren’t doing it on purpose, but rather it’s because they view that situation as normal and therefore don’t think about it. But not doing it on purpose makes it no less harmful, which is exactly why all of the visible men in the movement (such as the ones who I’ve quoted; who, by the way, individually either identify as pro-feminist or feminist, but all consider themselves to be “allies”) advocate first and foremost men working with other men. That way men can be free to work on the issues that affect them most closely without silencing the women who are trying to do the same.

  5. I would like to ask why feminists seem to think it is acceptable to simply silence people who disagree with them. I don’t care how uneven the playing field is, under no cirmcumstances should anyone who is discussing an issue with you be silenced. (I am referring to internet chats mainly, particularly banning or scrambling text so that the message is unreadable.) This doesn’t reflect well on feminism, in my opinion, if it’s acceptable to prevent people from speaking if they don’t say exactly what you think they should say. As a man, how can I possibly develop an interest in feminist philosophy if part of the philosophy is dogmatic, arrogant and disregards any opinion but it’s own?

    I of course do not mean that all feminists are like this- there are too many strands of feminism for that to be possible. But I never encounter the “oh just go away, i don’t want to hear you any more” argument more than when i’m talking to feminists, and it really does make me want to go away and write the whole thing off as some wonderfully abstract nonsense with no relevance to reality.

    I post this question here because it seems to me that men are unable to play any role in feminism at all. if you start asking questions, god help you if they reveal a masculine attitude towards anything, because then you’ll be banned and silenced and told to go away. You’re just a man, you’ll never understand. Well, ok, ‘ll go away and stop trying. Mission accomplished(?)

  6. I don’t care how uneven the playing field is, under no cirmcumstances should anyone who is discussing an issue with you be silenced.

    I haven’t been following your exploits in great detail, but I do know that your comments have been moderated/deleted on at least two feminist blogs in the last week. I have no interest in examining the decisions of moderators on other blogs, but I will mention that at some point a person with any habit of self-examination might start to wonder whether a repeated pattern says more about other people or more about themselves.

    You make a lot of objectionable assertions above, assertions painted with such a broad brush that addressing them would be a wasted effort. Do you consider it arrogant to note that broad-brush assertions are not worth engaging? Because I think it is simply pragmatic.

    Nobody has to listen to anyone who they feel is being a jerk, and website owners are under no obligation to publish any content they find unacceptable. Anyone these days who can comment on a blog can go and start their very own blog, at no expense, if they feel that they are being silenced.

    There are plenty of roles for men as feminist allies, working with feminists for a more egalitarian society, and the starting point is simply taking on the broad proposition that constrained gender roles hurt all of us in terms of limiting individual expression, and then beginning to work with other men to broaden accepted masculine roles that eschew misogyny. Nitpicking more abstract aspects of feminist theory is not especially productive unless you have taken these beginning steps first.

  7. “and the starting point is simply taking on the broad proposition that constrained gender roles hurt all of us in terms of limiting individual expression, and then beginning to work with other men to broaden accepted masculine roles that eschew misogyny. ”

    True. I find it quite odd when men or women fully embrace gender roles that do limit their individual expression, so much so that their adherence to notions of being a “man” for example, actually hinder their development as people. It seems the above proposition is not so easy to put into effect.

    “at some point a person with any habit of self-examination might start to wonder whether a repeated pattern says more about other people or more about themselves.”

    I agree, and I did wonder if it was me being incredibly insensitive or if it was simply my particular style of presenting my argument which came across as insensitive that was the problem. But if that was the case, I don’t see why it’s not possible to reply to such posts with scrutiny, as you have done, rather than telling me to go away. You’re reply here leaves me with no option but to admit that my comment was too broad and that it was probably more of an unreasonable angry rant than a genuine opinion. This seems to me a far more reasonable response than banning me.

    “Nobody has to listen to anyone who they feel is being a jerk, and website owners are under no obligation to publish any content they find unacceptable.”

    Don’t you think that can be used as an excuse for people to simply ignore what they don’t want to hear? I agree that if a person is saying truly stupid things, or even not saying anything at all, simply insulting everybody, then there’s not really any point in letting them post. But if you have a genuine opinion that you try to argue (with someone who probably knows more about the subject than you do) so you can get to the bottom of an issue, that’s not something that should be ignored and deleted. Calling it “trolling” is also a cop out- there is a big difference between someone who just wants to annoy you and someone who thinks there’s a genuine hole in your argument.

    “Do you consider it arrogant to note that broad-brush assertions are not worth engaging? Because I think it is simply pragmatic.”

    Well, I agree. If the person is making big generalisations, as I was above, it isn’t arrogant to move on to something else. But it certainly doesn’t hurt to engage with them and make them see what they’ve missed.

  8. Don’t you think that can be used as an excuse for people to simply ignore what they don’t want to hear?

    Of course it can be used as an excuse. Almost anything can be used as an excuse. That doesn’t mean that it is always used as an excuse. People may have a whole heap of reasons to deem a comment unacceptable that have nothing to do with whether they are capable of effectively rebutting the argument or not.

    Calling it “trolling” is also a cop out- there is a big difference between someone who just wants to annoy you and someone who thinks there’s a genuine hole in your argument.

    There may be a world of difference in the intents inside the skulls, but none of that is necessarily conveyed through text on the screen unless people take special care with how they write.

    If your intent is to be an ally, or at least a genuine seeker, but others are consistently reading you as vexatious instead, then the problem may well be with the way you are writing, in that the terms you are employing don’t distinguish you from the commentors who do just want to annoy feminists.

    Are many feminists prickly? You bet, but that doesn’t mean that the prickliness is unjustified. If the feminist commenting communities can’t tell the difference between some genuine interlocutors and the trolls, then perhaps the interlocutors being “misunderstood” need to read a lot more so that they can stop using terms which are so loaded with potential for misunderstanding.

  9. “then perhaps the interlocutors being “misunderstood” need to read a lot more so that they can stop using terms which are so loaded with potential for misunderstanding.”

    That seems to be true. It is, however, a rare man indeed that would take the time to read enough feminist literature to be able to get to that point (in fact I would also say a rare woman too, particularly today in a “post-feminist” situation, if that is a reasonable name for what we are in now. None of my female friends are at all interested in feminism, and think me quite quaint to be spending time on feminist sites)

    I will confess that the only real feminist writer I’ve read is Germaine Greer, and I would bet that if she posted on some of these sites she’d probably be banned as well. (Her assessment of rape as one of the “least destructive assaults,” for example, would probably not go down well.) (To clarify, I don’t agree with that assessment)

    So it seems to me that, as you say, men should read feminist works yet unless we talk to feminists, this is never required of us. A situation that seems fixed, unfortunately

    i will also admit that I often forget how my persistence in an argument (here I am, posting again, and we’re not even disagreeing that much) can come across as irritating. So feel free not to reply to this if you don’t want!

  10. [...] Feminism 101: “What roles should men play in feminism?” [...]

  11. Who cares about men? Feminism isn’t about men. It’s about women.

    Yes, Paul, women do own feminism. Aren’t there any small countries left in the world for you boys to invade, colonize and take over?

    Feminism also isn’t about the equality of women with men. It’s about the liberation of women *from* men and their system.

    I find this blog disturbing. This is not feminism 101. This is liberalism as applied to women 101. Liberalism is not the same thing as feminism. And no, there’s no such thing as a liberal feminist. Any more than there’s any such thing as a male feminist. Which is an oxymoron.

    [comment edited to remove commenter's URL]

  12. luckynkl, you may have a technical problem with your site. When I tried to read it the browser window was locked and an attempt was made to download files to my computer. You may have been hacked somehow (or else you’ve done it yourself and are trolling here).

    Taking men out of the feminism equation entirely is counterproductive when many feminists have heterosexual partnerships, and also live with fathers and brothers and sons. I wouldn’t argue that this blog so far has concentrated more on equality and less on liberation, but I don’t think that the two are mutually exclusive. Surely part of liberation from patriarchal systems is working with men to show them a better way.

  13. Hm, after a bit of research, I’m starting to wonder whether luckynkl isn’t actually Tony Palmyra.

  14. I WISH luckynkl was actually Tony Palmyra. At least that would explain why she makes such ridiculous arguments.

  15. Luckynkl was the person publishing the extreme transphobic comments on Twisty’s blog, while Twisy wasn’t either around or able to moderate it (she was undergoing chemotherapy), and she got the blame for the whole mess and many bloggers de-linked her to this day.

    Sample:


    “I’m supposed to believe men in drag are women. And if you put on a werewolf mask, will you also expect me to believe you’re a werewolf?” (Luckynkl)

  16. Luckynkl unnerved me slightly, but you know that post’s almost worth preserving -speaking as a former WATM-thinker. It’s worth saying ‘okay, have you ever heard a *real* feminist actually say something like this?’.

  17. “Assert a feminist-supportive and male-positive perspective.”

    Wow, now there’s a contradiction in terms.

    The answer to the question of why so many men hate feminism is quite simple: we are sick and tired of having the evils of our very existence pounded into our heads from the time we are young boys. I for one cannot imagine how any man who doesn’t feel the need to slit his own throat for having the audacity to take up space on the planet could possibly call himself, or worse yet, *aspire to become* a feminist.

    I think the more interesting and telling question is why so many intelligent, competent women I know have both a positive view of men and a negative view of feminism. Hiding behind “backlash” or “media propaganda” doesn’t explain it, either. More likely they are as sick as the rest of us of the incessant victim mentalities and hate-speech.

  18. Feminism criticises traditional gender roles and expectations for both sexes, Michael. Traditional expectations cast women as killjoys, drama-queens, nags and manipulators while casting men as domestic tyrants, sex-obsessed, selfish and unfeeling. BOTH sets of roles are ugly and destructive and need to be undermined and rejected for a saner model of interpersonal interaction between the sexes.

    Traditional gender roles suck rocks for all of us. Femininity and Masculinity are equally toxic constructions when they demand that we stifle ourselves as persons to conform to restrictive notions of Men and Women.

    If when you read feminist criticism of gender roles all you see is criticism of Men, I suggest that you are not paying close enough attention.

  19. That would be fine and dandy if that’s what de facto feminism actually did. Contrary to your assertion here, the problem is that I’ve paid far too much attention to not only the likes of Daly, Dworkin, Steinem, etc., and even bell hooks with her affectatious lower-case moniker (it was she who brought to light my new status as a terrorist in addition to rapist and barbarian), but also to the pundits of feminism with their so-called quest for equality. I’ve been told everything from my inherent status as a rapist to my innate moral inferiority to my personal favorite of the Enlightened One who refused a drink from me as a guest in my house because she would be tainted by my maleness. Ironic coming from people who are supposedly criticizing this very dynamic.

    The quest for equality is one thing (and not incidentally one that goes FAR beyond gender); feminism is quite another.

  20. Michael,

    It sounds like you’re conflating feminists with Feminism. I agree that much of what certain feminists say and do is reprehensible, but I also think Feminism is, as tigtog says above, a useful approach for improving the lives of both women and men. In particular, I’ve found that moving away from blog-land Feminism (no offense to our hostess, who runs one of the finer sites) and reading academic works addressing masculinity from a Feminist perspective has been enormously helpful in my own life.

  21. You are still left with the question of sexual gratification. Having personal sexual freedom need to be accomplished without chains. That you would have to relinquish part of yourself to gain sexual fulfillment just causes relationships to be bargaining venues. I give you this, you give me that. That is not sexual freedom.

  22. marcus, your view of freedom seems almost nihistically individualisic. We are a gregarious species, and without other people isolated humans tend to become mentally deranged.

    Interacting with other people always involves some sort of relinquishing of any of our own personal impulses which other people wouldn’t like: simply having a conversation with another person usually involves refraining from speaking every single word that comes into one’s head unless one wishes to be regarded as either weird or at the least, ill-mannered. Then other people avoid you.

    Sexual interactions require manners, and the give and take of social etiquette and courtesies, just as much as any other social interaction. Sexual interactions shouldn’t perhaps require any more etiquette than any other interaction, but surely sex should require at least as much in the way of etiquette and manners as shaking hands or sharing a table at a restaurant? That you are expected to refrain from crushing another person’s hand during the handshake, or that you wait to start your meal until the other person’s meal arrives doesn’t threaten your freedom, does it?Such conventions don’t make sexual relationships either mercenary or lacking sexual freedom either.

  23. I don’t see that the etiquette for sexual relationships that permeates the society is good enough to meet society’s sexual demands. The etiquette itself, even ones that seem to be implied by feminist critiques of gender roles, are themselves insufficient to provide people with sexual fulfillment.

    I agree that isolationism is bad. But I do not believe that building relationships should contain a sexual undercurrent. I believe this is also a feminist critique of relationships, especially professional ones. Even though a person is attempting to build a normal relationship with their co-worker, for example, if the person is suffering from lack of sexual contention there will be a sexual undercurrent to all of their interactions. This is not good for the person because his honest desire for normal relationship is sabotaged by the sexual, while the other person is going to reject any relationship the moment this sexual undercurrent becomes evident. This is where you get into the real feminist critiques regarding aggression and domination.

    And lastly. Sexual gratification can and should be supported even in situations without a partner, or a relationship. I don’t see having that as a cause for negative for the society or the individual. I know this is where feminism complains about objectification, but you cannot escape the fact that most people (including feminists) pick their sexual partners based on the sexual organs they carry. I see that as definite objectification–one that extremely few people would argue against.

  24. [this comment is quite a bit longer than the standard to which I ask commentors to generally aspire, but I'll let it through because it asks some good questions - try and keep the next one a bit shorter? ~tigtog, moderator]

    I’m struggling with the question about what role male pro-feminists should be filling with relation to the feminist movement, and this article (comments excepted) gave me some food for thought. But one thing keeps nagging at me… aren’t all of these men you quoted basically saying that men should focus their energy on helping men rather than helping women?

    I mean, we have all the power and all the wealth a society could ever possibly thrust into our hands, whether we like it or not. If we were keen on being fixed, we’d’ve fixed ourselves already. If men, as a whole, were capable of being reached by conciousness-raising sessions and entry-level education on feminist principles, wouldn’t we see less hostility already, since men have had the power to educate themselves and take the proper road on their own for hundreds of years?

    Will focusing my energy on letting men vent to me emotionally, stop him from raping women, sexualising children, dismissing women’s opinions, using pornography, and engaging in other misogynist behavior? I don’t know the answer to that question, except to say that I’m not sure I believe Patriarchy and Male Priviledge and all the associated atrocities are in existence just because men can’t share their emotions freely or discuss the right way to treat their wives with pro-feminist dudes.

    Or maybe I’m just engaging in the practice of dissing someone else’s ideas without offering any of my own. I admit that I have used my wife, and other women around me, as emotional vending machines and professors, and they allow such use simply because they’re kind of stuck with me, not because they have the extra energy available to teach me. But there were always resources I could have availed myself of instead; I just chose to remain ignorant of them. Most men will. And those that don’t probably don’t need an emotional venting point so much as they need to engage in internal self-examination and reshaping.

    And I guess pro-feminist men could help with that. And maybe help them to that recognition. But… well… you know, it just seems so… male-centric, to say that we should focus our energy on helping men break gender roles than on trying to stop rape and misogyny more directly. Somehow. But I don’t know.

    Oh, and something else nags at me too… why don’t you have any quotes from women on what they think mens’ roles should be in relation to the feminist movement? I’m sure someone has said something about it, and I agree with luckynkl insofar as feminism was created by women, for women, about women. Is it our responsibility to ask a feminist “How can I help?”, or is it burdensome, like when men say “What should I clean?” when time comes to field-day the kitchen? That we should just find a way to help, because the things that need done are obvious and manifold, and then do it, like we should find something that needs to be clean, and then just clean it, without making a woman be our supervisor?

    I think I just answered my own question, on that one. Hmm.

  25. My girlfriend, being the feminist she is that I love, directed me to this FAQ. I have to say that a lot of it makes a whole lot of sense. It’s sometimes difficult to accept certain turn of phrases, but like my mom used to tell me, when you’re at someone else’s place, you wipe your shoes, you say please and thanks, and you flush twice, just to be on the safe side.

    I find, as a man with quite the open mind, that wrapping one’s head around the presence of men in feminism remains a tricky business. My pragmatic side tells me that feminism can succeed better using socio-political positions and legislation and whatnot, but the observant, artistic side of me sees that no amount of lawmaking can proactively prevent *some* men from viewing women everywhere, from ads to television to fashion, as little more than trophies. Despicable and counterproductive behavior, of course.

    I wouldn’t say that Feminism belongs to women exclusively: anything that endeavors at revolutionizing society as a whole concerns everyone. I do believe, however, that the vast, vast majority of men lack the perspective to fully grasp the more involved, personal and female-centric details of the struggle. After all, if post-modern Feminism states that you can’t generalize and address women’s issues throughout different societies, no way can a man properly identify with all issues discussed in Feminism.

    Not always, but at times, it’s better to let a woman speak about certain feminist issues, and remain on the sidelines as the “ally” ready to jump in should it be needed.

  26. [...] What roles should men play in feminism? Why? This FAQ has some interesting suggestions about what men's role could be in feminism-what do you think of these ideas?http://finallyfeminism101.wordpress.com/… [...]

  27. I’ve been reading a number of the pages here over the last few days. There seems to be a common theme that when discussing women’s issues you don’t bring up men’s issues.

    The key quotes here would suggest that women and men need to work on themselves individually, with men and women respectively occupying the supporting role in each case.

    Yet there are many issues of inequality that represent disadvantages to both men and women where (at least to me) a co-operative approach seems called for. (I can give an example if needed.) And further that an awareness of the other sex’s disadvantage (even if it is comparatively minor) in that situation is instructive for forming an idea of how to deal with the inequality. Additionally, the way an inequality is combated often can have implications for both women and men.

    Yet the culture here seems to be you look after your problems and let us look after ours. How do we create an environment where each sex feels comfortable to bring up their issues when they feel they are relevant to solving the problem as a whole?

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